What will I learn?

The Postgraduate Diploma in Science offers those with some background in science the opportunity to undertake more advanced and in-depth study in a subject. The diploma is primarily coursework-based, but some courses allow for independent project work or research.

Astronomy is concerned with the study of the nature and distribution of matter and radiation throughout all time and space in the Universe. Astronomers have always been keen to harness the latest technological advances in their quest for ever more precise and revealing observations. As a consequence, astronomy in recent years has been one of the most rapidly expanding of all physical sciences and many exciting and unexpected discoveries continue to be made.

Further study

This qualification is an ideal pathway into more advanced study. UC offers a number of scientific master's programmes as well as a Doctor of Philosophy.

Career opportunities

Students majoring in Astronomy acquire a wide range of skills, from the use of spectroscopic and photometric detector systems (and the analysis of the data obtained), through electronics and optics, to computer skills for analysis and interpretation of data. This produces a graduate who is well equipped to undertake employment not only in astronomy, but in any number of fields which require practical experience or which involve analysis of real data.

Studying Physics and Astronomy equips graduates with skills in problem solving, abstract thinking, evaluating, communicating and decision making. It develops high levels of curiosity, inventiveness, and mathematical and computer competencies.

Graduates may follow traditional paths and work either as scientists, technicians, research assistants, engineers, astronomers, patent agents, technical authors or even managers at an observatory or in an institute. However, many Astronomy graduates move into other fields, particularly computing and information technology, management, and science communication or media work. With some additional study graduates can become meteorologists, geophysicists, material technologists or medical physicists.

Which department am I in?

College of Science

Study options

Full Time (1 year)

Tuition fees
NZ$39,500.00 (US$ 27,601) per year
Full programme fees for 120 points

*Price shown is for indicative purposes, please check with institution

Start date

Expected February, July 2022

Venue

University of Canterbury

Warehouse, 20 Kirkwood Ave,

Ilam,

CHRISTCHURCH,

Upper Riccarton,

8041, New Zealand

Entry requirements

For students from United States

A Bachelor of Arts or an equivalent degree with grades to a specified level in the subject concerned is required for the PGCertArts. English language requirements: IELTS academic with an average score of 6.5, with a minimum of 6.0 in reading, writing, listening and speaking; TOEFL (iBT) total minimum score of 90, minimum score of 19 in reading, writing and listening; TOEFL PBT with a minimum score of 575 and TWE with a minimum score of 4.5; CCEL EAP Level 2 with a minimum B+ grade; CAE or CPE score of 176 with a minimum of 169 in reading, writing, listening and speaking; Pearson Test of English (Academic) - PTE with an overall score of 58 and no PTE communicative skills score below 50; NZCEL Level 5.

For international students

Students require a Bachelor of Science, or any bachelor's degree with approved undergraduate science courses. The precise prerequisites vary for each major subject, but are normally at least a B- Grade Point Average in 300-level courses.

Applicants must also satisfy our English language entry requirements:

  • IELTS (Academic): Minimum overall score of 6.5, with a minimum of 6.0 in reading, writing, listening and speaking.
  • TOEFL (IBT): Minimum overall score of 90, with a minimum score of 19 in Reading, Listening and Writing.
  • PTE (Pearson Test of English - Academic): Overall score of 58 and no communicative skills score below 50.

Application deadline: At least 6 months before the planned start date.

*There may be different IELTS requirements depending on your chosen course.

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About University of Canterbury

University of Canterbury’s alumni include popular personalities such as Karl Popper, one of the greatest twentieth-century science philosophers.

  • Ranked among the world’s top 250
  • Among the top 1% cent of universities worldwide
  • 5-Star QS rating for its excellent research & teaching methods
  • Based in Christchurch - New Zealand’s most affordable city

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