Astronomy and Astrophysics
Astronomy is the scientific study of celestial objects. Astronomers explore and strive to understand the universe beyond the earth.
The introductory level astronomy courses provide a non-technical overview of the scientific approach to questions and our current understanding. At the more advanced level a quantitative physical understanding of astrophysical systems is developed.
- Astronomy and Astrophysics Department
- Calendar Listing: Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Calendar Listing: Planetary Science
- Apply to the Physical & Mathematical Science admission category on the St. George campus
- Six Grade 12 U or M courses, including English and Calculus and Vectors are required
- Senior high school Physics is required preparation for first-year courses
- A background in chemistry is strongly recommended, but not required
- Computer programming knowledge is also important
- Students outside of Ontario should have the equivalent senior high school credits
Honours Bachelor of Science Programs
- Astronomy and Astrophysics (major and minor options)
- Astronomy and Physics (specialist)
- Planetary Science (specialist)
- AST 101H1 - The Sun and Its Neighbours
- AST 121H1 - Origin and Evolution of the Universe
Advice for First Year
The required first-year courses for the astronomy and physics specialist program are MAT 137Y1 – Calculus!, either of two algebra courses (MAT 223H1 or MAT 240H1) and PHY 151H1 and PHY 152H1 – Foundations of Physics (two halfcourses). For the astronomy and astrophysics program, students must take either of two calculus courses (MAT 135Y1 – Calculus I or MAT 137Y1), and either sets of the two physics half- courses PHY 131H1 and PHY 132H1 - Introduction to Physics, or PHY 151H1 or PHY 152H1.
An undergraduate degree in astronomy and astrophysics may prepare you for a career in teaching or for work in a planetarium or science museum.
If you want to become a professional astronomer, you should take post-graduate studies.
Some of our graduates have chosen careers in other disciplines such as computer science, biophysics, geophysics, atmospheric physics, aerospace studies and remote sensing.