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Curriculum and Degree Information

The M.S. in Astrophysics is a 30-credit graduate program. All students take two core courses, Radiative Processes (Physics 76700) and Computational Methods (Physics 78100), plus 9 credits of elective courses in either an astronomy pathway or a physics pathway; and complete a two-part thesis course (total of 6 credits) as the culminating experience.

The core courses provide a foundation in basic principles of astrophysics, including computational methods and radiation processes. Except for the Advanced Supervised Research course, each class is 4 credit hours.

The physics pathway is for students who wish to supplement their coursework with physics courses and prepare for a physics Ph.D. program.

The astronomy pathway focuses on more specific topics in astrophysics.

Students are required to take six courses total, for 24 credits. They are expected to take four during their first year and two during the second year.

In addition to coursework, students pursue a research project under the supervision of a CUNY faculty member or an affiliate faculty member. This project culminates in a written thesis, which must be submitted upon graduation.

Students enroll in a course titled Advanced Supervised Research to fulfill these research hours (3 credits per semester during the second year, for a total of 6 credits). The thesis may contain background information, a literature review, methods, results, and a discussion of the significance of the project. There will be a public presentation of the thesis research (not an oral exam).

Sample course schedule

 

 

Semester 1

Semester 2

Semester 3

Semester 4

Basic Astro

Unsolved Problems in Astrophysics (PHYS 75700)

Radiative Processes (PHYS 76700) (Core)

Stars
(PHYS 84700)

Computational Methods (PHYS 78100) (Core)

Physics Electives

Mechanics (PHYS 71100)

E&M 1
(PHYS 71500)

Quantum 1 (PHYS 72500)

Stat Mech (PHYS 74100)

Astro Electives

Special Topics in Astrophysics (PHYS XXXX) (new)

Galaxies
(PHYS 75800)

Special Topics in Astrophysics (PHYS XXXX) (new)

Cosmology (PHYS 76000)