Twin Cities Campus
Astrophysics, Minnesota Institute for
College of Science and Engineering
Link to a list of faculty for this program.
Minnesota Institute for Astrophysics, 116 Church Street S.E., Minneapolis, MN 55455 (612-624-4811; fax: 612-626-2029)
Along with the program-specific requirements listed below, please read the General Information section of this website for requirements that apply to all major fields.
Astrophysics is the study of the universe and its constituent parts. The department conducts research in observational, theoretical, and computational astrophysics, as well as instrument development. The main research areas include minor planetary bodies, solar system properties, dynamics of normal and active galaxies, stellar evolution, interaction of stars with their environments, the interstellar medium, astrophysical magnetohydrodynamics, and galactic and cosmological structure. Observational research includes activities that cover X-ray, ultraviolet, optical, infrared, and radio wavelengths. Extensive research programs in space physics, nucleosynthesis, and the elementary particle-cosmology interface are also carried out in interdisciplinary connections with the graduate program in physics.
Prerequisites for Admission
The preferred undergraduate GPA for admittance to the program is 3.50.
Undergraduate astronomy, physics or equivalent degree required.
Other requirements to be completed before admission:
Coursework in analytical mechanics, electrodynamics, quantum mechanics, thermodynamics, and statistical physics.
Special Application Requirements:
A statement of career goals, scores from the GRE General (Aptitude) Test and Subject (Advanced) Test in physics, and three letters of recommendation are required. Applications are due by January 1 to be considered for fellowships and by January 15 for teaching and research assistantships. Students are admitted fall semester only. Additional application information is available at www.astro.umn.edu/grad/apply/
Applicants must submit their test score(s) from the following:
International applicants must submit score(s) from one of the following tests:
The preferred English language test is Test of English as Foreign Language.
Key to test abbreviations (GRE, TOEFL, IELTS, MELAB).
For an online application or for more information about graduate education admissions, see the General Information section of this website.
28 credits are required in the major.
12 credits are required outside the major.
24 thesis credits are required.
This program may be completed with a minor.
Use of 4xxx courses toward program requirements is permitted under certain conditions with adviser approval.
A minimum GPA of 3.00 is required for students to remain in good standing.
The PhD degree requires a minimum of 40 course credits, including 28 credits in the major, and 12 credits in a minor or supporting program; 24 thesis credits are also required. The graduate written examination, typically held during the week prior to the start of fall semester, must be passed on the second "real" attempt (first-year students are given a free trial). A second-year project must be defended by the end of the fall semester of the third year. The preliminary oral exam must be passed by the end of the third year. Normally, the preliminary oral exam includes a presentation on the second-year project.
Students must take a minimum of 12 credits in coursework from related fields. Specific courses are chosen in consultation with advisor.
Take 24 credits after passing preliminary oral exam.
AST 8888 - Thesis Credit: Doctoral (1.0-24.0 cr)
|Credits:||4.0 [max 4.0]|
|Typically offered:||Every Fall|
|Credits:||4.0 [max 4.0]|
|Typically offered:||Every Spring|
|Credits:||1.0 -24.0 [max 100.0]|
|Grading Basis:||No Grade|
|Typically offered:||Every Fall, Spring & Summer|