Overview

The Master of Science (Astronomy) is suited to students who have an advanced knowledge of contemporary astronomy. The course provides individuals with the necessary academic knowledge, science communication, and research skills across astronomy and its related fields.

After graduating, students may work in a range of astronomy related fields for professional practice or gain a scholarship in this area.

View Master of Science (Astronomy) course handbook
Looking at postgrad in 2024?

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Upgrade your skills

  • Assessing astronomical knowledge
  • Critical thinking and problem solving
  • Communication skills
  • Conducting research projects

Stretch your career further

Students can enhance their career opportunities by gaining additional leadership and management skills – an important asset in a today’s complex and changing business environment. The below examples demonstrate the types of roles graduates can attain.

  • Astronomy Education Officer
  • Pathway to further learning
  • Astronomy Outreach Manager
  • Astronomy Communication Manager

Strong industry connections and co-creation

  • Government agencies (NASA, BOM, ATNF, AAO)
  • Melbourne Planetarium
  • Leading secondary/tertiary organisation
  • CSIRO
International student visa

International students in Australia who hold student visas are required to study full-time and on campus. Courses that are taught entirely online are only available to international students studying outside Australia or those in Australia who are not on a student visa. Online courses are not available to international students in Australia who hold a student visa.

Why Swinburne?

The median income for PG graduates five years out is $89K

Top 200 universities worldwide for Physics and Astronomy

QS World University Rankings by Subject 2023

90.8% of PG graduates found employment within 4 months of completing their course

Top 20%  for PG teaching quality in Australia

Qualifications

Standard Entry 

  • A recognised Bachelor degree (AQF level 7 or 8 or equivalent) in a cognate discipline aligned to astronomy and/or astronomy-related fields, within:
    • mathematical sciences
    • physics and astronomy
    • earth sciences
    • computer science
    • information systems
    • aerospace engineering and technology
    • radiology
    • optical science
    • radiography
    • other cognate disciplines assessed to be appropriate; or
  • successful completion of the Graduate Certificate of Science (Astronomy) or the Graduate Diploma of Science 
    (Astronomy) 
     

Non-Standard Entry 

Completion or partial completion of an approved postgraduate qualification (including Graduate Certificates, Graduate Diplomas and Masters). Additional performance criteria and prerequisite requirements may also apply.

Students admitted to the course with prior tertiary studies that satisfy part of the academic requirements of this course may be eligible for academic credit.

The University may determine selection criteria and restrictions in respect of courses to apply in addition to these entry requirements

Standard Entry 

  • A recognised Bachelor degree (AQF level 7 or 8 or equivalent) in a cognate discipline aligned to astronomy and/or astronomy-related fields, within:
    • mathematical sciences
    • physics and astronomy
    • earth sciences
    • computer science
    • information systems
    • aerospace engineering and technology
    • radiology
    • optical science
    • radiography
    • other cognate disciplines assessed to be appropriate; or
  • successful completion of the Graduate Certificate of Science (Astronomy) or the Graduate Diploma of Science 
    (Astronomy) 

Non-Standard Entry 

Completion or partial completion of an approved postgraduate qualification (including Graduate Certificates, Graduate Diplomas and Masters). Additional performance criteria and prerequisite requirements may also apply.

Students admitted to the course with prior tertiary studies that satisfy part of the academic requirements of this course may be eligible for academic credit.

The University may determine selection criteria and restrictions in respect of courses to apply in addition to these entry requirements

Admission requirements

Meeting the minimum entry requirements for the course does not guarantee an offer of a place. See admission requirements for general information about the admission process.

English language requirements

Satisfactory completion of one of the following:

Need to undertake an English assessment for entry?

A prerequisite for many courses, the Pearson Test of English (PTE Academic) can now be done at our Hawthorn campus.

Credit transfer

Credit is granted in recognition of previous study and/or experience and allows students to gain advanced standing towards their course. Applicants are assessed on a case-by-case basis.

Recognition of prior learning

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) allows students to gain credit (advanced standing) towards their course in recognition of skills and knowledge gained through work experience, life experience and/or formal training. Applicants are assessed on a case-by-case basis.

Finding your fit

At Swinburne, we recognise that not one size fits all. If this course doesn’t meet all your study criteria, check out these alternatives.

How credit points work

To qualify for the award of Master of Science (Astronomy) students must complete

  • 12 core units of study (150 credit points).

Your units

Graduate Certificate

Completing 4 core units entitles you to the graduate certificate.

4
Core units
=
Graduate certificate
Units of study Unit code
Core units
Exploring Stars and the Milky Way
Core unit, 12.5 credit points
AST80004
Exploring the Solar System
Core unit, 12.5 credit points
AST80005
Galaxies and their Place in the Universe
Core unit, 12.5 credit points
AST80006
Astrobiology and the Origins of Life
Core unit, 12.5 credit points
AST80001
Learn more about the Graduate Certificate of Science (Astronomy)

Graduate Diploma

Completing an additional 4 core units entitles you to the graduate diploma.

4
Core units
+
4
Core units
=
Graduate diploma
Units of study Unit code
Core units
Astrophotography & CCD Imaging
Core unit, 12.5 credit points
AST80002
Planetary Science
Core unit, 12.5 credit points
AST80015
Studies in Space Exploration
Core unit, 12.5 credit points
AST80017
Professional Tools for Astronomical Observation
Core unit, 12.5 credit points
AST80018
Learn more about the Graduate Diploma of Science (Astronomy)

Masters degree

Completing an additional 4 core units entitles you to the masters.

8
Core units
+
4
Core units
=
Masters degree
Units of study Unit code
Core units
Cosmology and the Large Scale Structure of the Universe
Core unit, 12.5 credit points
AST80003
Major Project - Computational Astrophysics
Core unit, 12.5 credit points
AST80011
Major Project - Observational Astronomy
Core unit, 12.5 credit points
AST80013
Stellar Astrophysics
Core unit, 12.5 credit points
AST80016

2024 fees

Yearly fee* ($AUD)

$24,800

Total fee* ($AUD)

$37,200

2024 fees

Yearly fee* ($AUD)

$24,800.00

Fees are estimates only

The student tuition fees as published are subject to change given individual circumstances at enrolment. These fees apply for units studied in 2023 only and may change for units studied in future years. If part-time study is permitted, annual fees will be proportionally lower based on the number of units taken per semester.

Fees are estimates only

The indicative course fees shown apply to international students for the relevant year only. They are based on a standard study load per year. However, please note that fees are assessed according to a student's study load in each semester, and variation to study load will result in an adjustment to tuition fees. International tuition fees are generally inclusive of Student Services and Amenities Fees (SSAF). All fees are subject to annual review and may be adjusted.

How do I pay my fees?

FEE-HELP is a loan given to eligible full-fee paying higher education students to help pay part or all of their tuition fees. The Commonwealth Government pays the amount of the loan directly to Swinburne.

International students need to pay tuition fees up-front by the relevant due date. You can find the due dates on your Statement of Account.

To pay your fees:

  • log in to My Finances
  • check your Australian bank account details are correct 
  • check your Statement of Account to see how much you owe 
  • pay using your preferred payment method.

Eligibility for FEE-HELP

You’re eligible for a FEE-HELP loan if you are studying an undergraduate or postgraduate degree, or UniLink or OUA course at Swinburne, and you:

  • are an Australian citizen doing at least one unit of your course in Australia; or
  • hold a permanent humanitarian visa and will be living in Australia for the duration of your course; or
  • hold a New Zealand Special Category visa and meet the special eligibility requirements for New Zealand citizens
  • are undertaking bridging study for overseas trained professionals and will be living in Australia for the duration of this study
  • have not exceeded the new combined Help Loan limit.
     

The HELP limit is the maximum amount you can borrow from the government in your lifetime towards your education costs. It is fixed and cannot be topped up.

Student services and amenities fee

This funding serves to improve the student experience at Swinburne. You may use many or just some of the services and amenities that the fee provides.

The fee shown in the capped amount for 2024.

This funding serves to improve the student experience at Swinburne. You may use many or just some of the services and amenities that the fee provides.

This amenities fee is included within your annual tuition fee listed above. The fee shown in the capped amount for 2024.

Please refer to the Student Services Amenities Fee page for more information.

SSAF fee* ($AUD)

$351.00

SSAF fee* ($AUD)

$351.00

Scholarships

Scholarship applications for 2023 are open. Scholarships at Swinburne are about providing opportunity, promoting equity and recognising excellence and achievement. We want you to reach your potential and achieve your life and career goals. 

Our handy guide will assist you to gather documents for your application.

When you apply for a Swinburne course, we automatically consider you for an international scholarship of up to 20 per cent off your course fees – no separate application required! Just apply for your Swinburne course of choice and when we review your course application, we will also assess you for an international scholarship.

Apply through an agent

Most international students use an education agent to help them through the application process. Swinburne has agents all over the world that can help you with your application to study. Search for a Swinburne representative in your country. If your country is not listed, please contact us.

Representatives and agents
MA-SASTRO
Search for agents

Apply directly

Ready to take on a new challenge and reach your academic goals? If you already know which course you want to study and understand the entry requirements, what are you waiting for? Apply online! 

Please note: This online course is not available to on-shore international students holding a student visa.

Start dates
Location
Last date to apply
Start dates
Study Period 1
Location
Hawthorn
Last date to apply
21-February-2024
Start dates
26-February-2024
Study Period 3
Location
Hawthorn
Last date to apply
21-August-2024
Start dates
26-August-2024
Start dates
Location
Start dates
Study Period 1
Location
Hawthorn
Start dates
26-February-2024
Study Period 3
Location
Hawthorn
Start dates
26-August-2024
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