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Astronomist Career Information

What an Astronomist does

Abilities & Traits Required


Education wise you need a BSc in Physics/Mathematics/Computer Science or a BE/BTech in related disciplines to be eligible for the master's course in Astronomy. You can also complete your master's programme in the above subjects and then apply for a PhD programme in Observational Astronomy, Astrophysics or Space Sciences.

Apart from IIT’s, a good starting point would be the Centre for Space Science and Technology Education in Asia and Pacific (CSSTEAP) that is affiliated to the United Nations. The Introductory Summer School at the Inter-University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics, Pune gives you an excellent opportunity to find out if you are cut out for this job. You can enroll for this 5 weeks programme in the first year of your master's course/ 3rd year of engineering. In this course a series of lectures, workshops and field trips are organised through which you will be acquainted with the basics of astronomy and astrophysics.

Young students with an interest in astronomy can appear for the nation wide Indian Astronomy Olympiad tests organized by the IAOP and about 50 selected students are then invited to the Indian Astronomy Training Camp. The best student in the camp then represents India at the International Astronomy Olympiad (InAO). The Indian Astronomy Olympiad Program (IAOP) is designed to encourage students with good foundations in physics and mathematics and an interest in astronomy.


There is enough money for a decent living but you cannot dream to be a Bill Gates or a Richard Ellison. The average starting salary in this field with a BE degree is around Rs 20000-25000, which can grow with experience. Accommodation and traveling allowances are among the additional benefits that you can avail of.

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