Koramangala, Bangalore +91-9108510058 [email protected]
Get In Touch


How To Become An Astrophysicist - Complete Guide

Updated By Team Setmycareer on Sep 08, 2023

Discover How To Become An Astrophysicist


How To Become An Astrophysicist - Complete Guide

Astrophysics is the study of the universe and its celestial bodies. It is a fascinating subject which provides a detailed insight into our universe. If someone has an indigenous passion to know the mysteries of space and a desire to solve its secrets, the career of an astrophysicist is the best option for them.

Let’s discuss and explore the guide on How To Become An Astrophysicist. The steps on this engaging subject, explore its educational purpose, highlights, career possibilities, individual specializations and the significance of acquiring realistic experience.



Astrophysicists are a subset of physicists who study the fundamental functioning of the cosmos on the size of celestial bodies. They are pursuing this information through telescopic sightings as well as data obtained by space satellites missions.

Astrophysics is closely related to astronomy in that it aims to reconcile what physics indicates as to why the universe operates with some of what we observe in the cosmos everywhere. Astrophysicists analyze the cosmos and try to explain why it is the way it is.

The majority of astrophysics investigation is conducted by universities and government agencies such as NASA. Astronomers, including astrophysicists, typically function as professors at institutions and devote most of their time training as well as doing research utilizing data gathered from observatories and satellites.

While some astrophysicists journey to astronomers and laboratories to collect their original information, this is usually performed just for a couple of months out of the season, enabling the remainder of the year to analyze it. Theoretical astrophysicists will never conduct their experiments. Astrophysicists' research is later released in scholarly publications.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Must possess at least 50% aggregate from a recognized institution in 12th, from any board PUC/CBSE/ICSE/ISC, etc. However, the cut-off margin varies with the selection process of different colleges.
  • Should procure a valid score in entrance exams such as JEE-MAINS/CET/VITEEE/JEE-Advanced, etc. Different colleges offer their own entrance exams if you don’t have a satisfactory score in JEE or other competitive exams – colleges like NMIMS, Symbiosis International University, XUB, Andhra University, LPU, etc. Every state offers their own entrance exam as well.
  • One must earn a degree in B.Sc/B.Tech or a Diploma to become an Astronomer. This is a basic qualification you must require to enroll in this line of work.
  • An M.Sc/M.Tech in Astronomy can also prove to be helpful while looking for a higher degree and better learning.

Knowledge required

  • Apprehension of Physics — Predictive analytics of basic phenomena, laws, their interactions, and fluid, substance, and air mechanics interpretation techniques, and mechanical, electric, atomic, and subatomic structures and processes understanding.
  • Arithmetic Prowess — Being able to evaluate and interpret various mathematical equations and use them to address complex problems in arithmetic, geometry, calculus, and other areas.
  • Computer Application — Understanding the prospects and functioning of circuit boards, processing units, circuits, electrical devices, computer equipment, plus applications and programming.
  • Chemical Dexterity – Able to understand the chemical structure and composition of substances available in the environment. Includes the understanding of changes, interactions between different substances, methods of production, and safe disposal of toxic substances.
  • Design and Establishment — Recognition of the materials, techniques, and instruments used in building or restoring homes, factories, as well as other structures, such as roads, highways, bridges, etc.

Skills required

  • Rational interpretation — Use of rationality and inference to distinguish the positives and disadvantages of creative improvements, assumptions, or responses to situations.
  • Influence — Inspiring and persuading people to change their behavior and support a certain product, brand, or organization to increase sales.
  • Surveillance — Entails keeping track of and evaluating your own, other people's, or organizations' results to make changes or take disciplinary measures.
  • Strategic Thinking — Evaluating the possible expenses and advantages of various decisions to recognize the best one.
  • Time Management — Interacting and switching between different tasks and activities without consuming excess time to provide results.

The Steps for becoming an Astrophysicist

Let’s check what are the steps to become an astrophysicist.

Step 1. Nurture a Passion for Astronomy

We should begin by cultivating our interest in knowing space and astronomy. Engage in observing stars, reading books, and staying updated with the latest discoveries in the field. One must attend astronomy-associated events and join local astronomy clubs or societies to join compatible people with mutual interest.
Moreover make sure you are really interested to become an astrophysicist. Seek Career guidance and counselling from experts for better clarification.

Step 2. Education and Skill Development

To excel in astrophysics, a powerful educational foundation is necessary. Mathematics, physics, and computer science are basic subjects which constitute the backbone of astrophysical research. Besides, growing critical thinking, problem-solving, and analytical skills are necessary for interpreting complicated data, modelling astrophysical methods and formulating hypotheses.

A. Pursue a powerful Foundation in Science and Math

Astrophysics is a highly mathematical and scientific discipline. Concentrate on excelling in physics, mathematics, and other science subjects during your high school years. Powerful fundamentals in these subjects are necessary for further studies.

B. Get a Bachelor’s Degree

Enroll in a bachelor’s degree in astrophysics, physics or a co-related field. This undergraduate program empowers aspirants with fundamental knowledge and skills required to study astrophysics deeply. Opt for courses in astronomy, astrophysics, mathematics and physics while participating in available research projects.

C. Acquire a Master’s Degree (alternative)

While not compulsory, a master’s degree in astrophysics can offer us an advanced edge in the employment market and prepare us for more advanced research or educational positions. Consider pursuing this degree if we have a keen interest in a specific area of astrophysics.

D. Obtain a Ph.D. in Astrophysics

To become a professional astrophysicist, earning a Ph.D. is specifically compulsory. Enroll in a doctoral program in astrophysics, during which one can specialize and in a specific real research under the guidance of experienced faculty. Publish research in scientific journals and present it at conferences to achieve recognition in the field.

The significance of Astrophysics

Astrophysics plays a major role in expanding our understanding of the universe. It helps answer basic questions about its origin, evolution and composition of celestial bodies, and the nature of dark matter or energy. By studying astrophysics, we contribute to humanity’s profound knowledge and pave the way for future progress in space exploration, cosmology, and technology.

Job roles offered

Once you procure the required qualifications for becoming an Astrophysicist, a myriad of options are open to you. There are multiple projects you can undertake throughout this line of work, and there are many other fields you can branch out to as well.

  • Astronomer: Astronomy is the most ancient of the natural sciences. It's the only method in which you can learn and experience mechanics at work throughout the world without being able to directly touch anything you're looking at. Surprisingly, it was the advent of the telescopes that permitted astronomical exploration to progress from a hobby to contemporary science.

    An astronomer will concentrate his or her time reviewing data, publishing scientific papers, or developing computer programs to help with the data collection process. There are many fields of astronomy, and most astronomers would specialize in one. Solar science, celestial science, cosmic astrophysics, interstellar astrophysics, interplanetary astronomy, and metaphysics are only a few instances of these disciplines. Following that, each field divides into experimental and theoretical research. The analytical branch is concerned with collecting and interpreting data and employs fundamental physics concepts.

  • Astrobiologist: An astrobiologist is a scientist who investigates the existence of life on other planets. Astrobiologists attempt to figure out how life started and how it will flourish in a variety of ecosystems. This always entails the investigation of intense life down here on Earth. They investigate various planetary bodies to see whether life could perhaps exist there. Some astrobiologists work on programs that look for radio transmissions from life elsewhere in the Universe, whilst others look for locations where the most basic types of life could occur.

    An astrobiologist is a scientist who specializes in both biology and astronomy. Astrobiology is a multidisciplinary discipline that necessitates a thorough knowledge of the physiological, geological, and celestial phenomenon. You should learn any related curriculum to begin preparing yourself for a career in astrobiology. The majority of astrophysicists have studied physics, electronics, computer science, and arithmetic. Any astrobiologist, on the other hand, has degrees in behavioral and humanitarian disciplines such as historical memory and cognitive science.

  • Life Sciences Manager: Acting alongside and leading a group of specialists on tasks, as well as communicating directly to customers and managers on project results, are all aspects of the responsibilities of a life science boss. Life science managers may have a graduate degree, however, life science management programs are hard to come by. Human resources, financial, technical, and managerial responsibilities should all be on the table for life science administrators.

    Managers in the life sciences field are responsible for overseeing testing, development, and construction, and also supporting and evaluating researchers. They also educate their employees about emerging technologies and create new ideas that they can use in their programs. Representatives assign managers to administer, track, and set science priorities. Organizational and life sciences courses are part of their curriculum, which can require both introductory and professional training.

  • Astronaut: Astronauts are qualified to fly and/or move in spacecraft, operate in orbit, and participate in international human spaceflight activities. Although space travel can seem to be normal now, each journey into space may be a race against time. As a result, the majority of an astronaut's profession is spent in intensive training.

    Each astronaut has a special role to play, which is determined by their experience and the current tests onboarding the spacecraft. The majority of the studies are focused on researching how microgravity and radiation impact stuff like the human body, crystal formation, and virus evolution in space.

  • Climatologist: A climatologist's work is both interesting and dynamic. A climatologist can be recommended to carry a variety of hats depending on the company. A climatologist may conduct field experiments, also including collecting water or soil particles, before analyzing and reporting on the results. They may give presentations at lectures or conventions on certain findings, or they may analyze other research for clients, government leaders, or other potential investors.

    Climatologists may also be independent thinkers, using experiments to fix local temperature challenges or figure out how to function better in diverse climates. They will, for instance, collaborate with or as weathermen, increasing efficiencies by designing modern measuring instruments and computational methods, conducting experiments, and translating observations into concepts that are more readily interpreted by the general populace.

Career opportunities

Astrophysicists can opt for various fields of work in the companies listed below:

  • Broward College
  • Indian Institute of Astrophysics, Bangalore
  • Ashoka University
  • Universitat Frankfurt
  • Indian Space Research Organization
  • Tata Institute of Fundamental Research
  • Defense Research and Development Organization
  • Space Applications Center
  • Satish Dhawan Space Center
  • Vikram Sarabhai Space Center

Astrophysics Institutes and exams

An interested candidate can opt for specific courses at institutes like IISER, Osmania University, NISER, Delhi University, IITs, IAST, etc. To get admission to these institutes, one has to pass specific entrance exams like the IISER Aptitude test, NEST exam and CUET for Delhi University and several other exams. Getting a bachelor and masters from the aforementioned reputed institute's will get superior research and lab exposure compared to other institutions.

Top Astrophysics Institutes in India. And Colleges

  • Indian Institute of Astrophysics (IIA) Bangalore (for masters/Ph.D.)
  • Indian Institute of Science (IISc) Bangalore
  • Raman Research Institute (RRI) Bangalore (one of the veteran research institutes in India established by Dr. CV Raman)
  • Inter-University Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics (IUCAA), Pune
  • Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology (IIST), Thiruvananthapuram (only institute directly associated to ISRO). If we score 8+ CGPA in our masters', we can opt for direct interview at ISRO.
  • Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR), Mumbai has one of the best astrophysics research Institutes worldwide.

Is This Career Right For You?

Are you feeling uncertain about your career path? Not sure which direction to take? Take the first step towards a fulfilling future


For an astrophysicist it becomes an interesting journey which demands hard work, a craving to explore and a dedication to explore the mysteries of the universe. By adhering to the steps above one can undertake astrophysics as a promising career and nurture our scientific skills acquiring realistic experience. The knowledge and discoveries we make will not only raise our insight into the cosmos but also motivate upcoming generations of astrophysicists to strive and push the boundaries of human knowledge.

Choosing your career path can be challenging, Our Psychometric Career Assessment is designed to assess your strengths, interests, and aptitudes. By understanding your unique qualities, we can provide you with personalized career Counselling tailored to your aspirations.


SetMyCareer Editorial Team

The SetMyCareer Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with SetMyCareer's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.



please leave your comments


Related Posts

Team SetMycareer 14 August, 2023

The Career Path to Becoming a Publisher

The career of a publisher is a highly esteemed and dream job for many students. It is a stressful and demanding job.

Read More
Team SetMycareer 16 August, 2023

What is Career Development?

In today's fast-paced world, career development has become an essential aspect of every individual's professional career journey. It is the process of managing and planning one's career to achieve professional and personal goals.

Read More
Team SetMycareer 16 August, 2023

What is Career Transition?

In today's fast-paced world, career development has become an essential aspect of every individual's professional career journey.

Read More