what degree do you need to become an Astronomer
majors for Astronomers


Other names for this job might include Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, Astronomer, Astronomy Department Chair, Astronomy Professor, Astrophysicist, Lunar and Planetary Institute Director, National Radio Astronomy Observatory Director, Observatory Director, Physics and Astronomy Professor

  • $110220
  • 69%
    Job satisfaction
  • Hard
    Becoming one
  • Medium
    Job growth
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Be An Astronomer: What You Really Need

In this requirements guide for Astronomers, you will find out what do you need to become an Astronomer and what it takes to become one.

After reading this, you will be able to plan for your future if you want to be an Astronomer.

Degree required

Recommended degree level

Post-Doctoral Training



Master’s degree

No degree

High School Diploma

Generally, employers are looking for Astronomers who have a Post-doctoral. They also prefer someone who is good in Science and Reading Comprehension.

1 common question that we always get is what major or degree do I need to become An Astronomer or what courses do I need to take.

We did a survey to ask other Astronomers what did they major in college or university and here are the most popular majors that came up.

Planetary Astronomy and Science
Astronomy and Astrophysics, Other

A Ph.D. in physics, astronomy, or a related field is needed for most Astronomers jobs, especially jobs that do basic research or for independent research positions in industry.


schools for Astronomers

Interested in becoming An Astronomer? Find the right schools that can help you to become one. You will need some of your details to get you matched with the right college or university. This service is free thanks to our sponsors.

Questions to ask the university or college:

  1. How many students are in the program?
  2. Is your program accredited?
  3. How many faculty members do you have? Do they hold the right credentials?
  4. What is your job placement rate?
  5. Does your school hold career fairs or other on-campus events with employers? How many employers typically attend?
  6. How many of your students have at least one internship by graduation?

Click to start becoming an Astronomer

How long does it take


You will need a considerable amount of skill, knowledge and experience to be An Astronomer. Normally you will be required to have more than five years of experience.

For example: A surgeon have to complete 4 years of college plus an additional 5 to 7 years of specialized medical training to be able to do his/her job.

In terms of on-the-job training, you may need some training however you will be assumed that you will already have the necessary skills and work experience to perform the job.

How long does it take
2 to 4 years

Work experience
2 to 4 years

2 to 4 years

No experience

4 to 6 years

1 to 2 years

8 to 10 years

Job training
0 to 1 month

No training

0 to 1 month

1 to 3 months

1 to 2 years

6 months to 1 year

Most Astronomers have 2 to 4 years work experience and 0 to 1 month job training.

To increase your chances of getting a job, you can look for job training while studying to be one.

License and certifications

Do you need any license or certification
Not required

Astronomers with the federal government, such as those involving nuclear energy and other sensitive research areas, may require applicants to be U.S. citizens and hold a security clearance.

Skills required

We asked other Astronomers if they could only have 5 skills, what would they be. Here is what they said.

1. Science what does this mean
2.Reading Comprehension what does this mean
3.Critical Thinking what does this mean
4.Active Learning what does this mean
5.Writing what does this mean
= Hot in-demand that most employers are looking for

We did some research and found that most successful Astronomers have these 5 common characteristics. Most of them had Analytical Thinking and Initiative.

1.Analytical Thinking

Knowledge required

Just like any other job, you will need some know-hows to do the job. To become a successful Astronomers you need to acquire knowledge in these 5 key areas.

1. Physics what does this mean
2.Mathematics what does this mean
3.Computers and Electronics what does this mean
4.English Language what does this mean
5.Education and Training what does this mean

As An Astronomer, you may also be required to know how to use certain Development environment software, Analytical or scientific software and Analytical or scientific software tools.

Abstraction plus reference plus synthesis A++ (Development environment software)
Adaptive optics AO simulation software (Analytical or scientific software)
Analyz (Analytical or scientific software)
Astronomical Image Processing for Windows AIP4WIN (Analytical or scientific software)
Astronomical Image Processing System AIPS (Analytical or scientific software)
= Hot in-demand that most employers are looking for

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