Study mode:On campus Study type:Full-time Languages: English
Local:$ 1.95k / Academic year(s) Foreign:$ 10.4k / Academic year(s)  
StudyQA ranking:1753 Duration:36 months

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How old is the Universe? How do stars and galaxies develop? What is between the stars? How are planetary systems formed? Fascinated by questions like these? Then Astronomy is the programme for you!

Astronomy is about the universe, stars and planets. If you are interested in natural sciences, this international programme will appeal to you. You will study the physical processes in the universe, so physics and mathematics are also an important part of the programme.

This international bachelor takes three years. If you find out that Astronomy is not really your thing, you still have the opportunity to switch in the first semester - to Physics, Chemistry, Applied Physics or Mathematics. That means you can never go wrong!

Spectacular discoveries have been made in the field of astronomy in recent years, mainly because technological advances are making more and more things possible. In this international programme you can concentrate on the universe itself, or on developing and improving the instruments used to do this.

The Groningen astronomers are among the best in the world. Research into astronomy has been carried out at the University since 1883. Astronomers from Groningen collaborated on the development of the HIFI instrument in the Herschel space telescope, and are also involved in the international LOFAR network of radio telescopes.

Job perspectives

Every year we are pleased to be able to report that Astronomy graduates have no problem finding a job. They find jobs in astronomy, but just as easily in the business sector – both within and outside the Netherlands. Depending on which Master's specialization you choose, - Research, technology, advising - there are many career paths open to you!

Continue with astronomy research

As a PhD student you will spend four years carrying out research with professors in a particular field. You then write a thesis, which will earn you the title of Doctor.

Interested in the technology of astronomy?

The degree will qualify you for positions in companies that develop advanced technologies for satellites and telescopes. Many of the techniques you learn as an astronomer are also very useful in other disciplines. The newest medical scanners for example, contain technical advancements originally developed for telescopes.

Excellent career opportunities in the business sector

Astronomers have strong analytical abilities, and are able to solve complicated problems. You will therefore be highly employable in areas where strategy, risk assessment and models are important. A large number of graduates therefore find work with large international companies, software firms and large financial institutions.

Job examples

  • Researcher
  • Advisor
  • Technical innovator
  • Analyst

Detailed Course Facts

Application deadline Dutch students - May 01, 2015; EU/EEA students - June 01, 2015; non-EU/EEA students - April 15, 2015 Tuition fee
  • EUR 1951 Year (EEA)
  • EUR 10400 Year (Non-EEA)
Start date September 2015 Credits (ECTS) 180 ECTS
Duration full-time 36 months Languages Take an IELTS test
  • English
Delivery mode On Campus Educational variant Full-time Intensity Flexible More information Go To The Course Website

Course Content

Programme scheduleCourses year 1
  • Computer Practicum
  • Introduction to Astronomy
  • Calculus 1, 2 & 3
  • Heat and transport
  • Mechanics and relativity 1 & 2
  • Molecules: Structure, Reactivity and Function
  • Physics Laboratory 1
  • Practicals
Courses year 2
  • Electricity and magnetism 2
  • Observational Astronomy
  • Physics of Galaxies
  • Physics of Stars
  • Quantum Physics 1 & 2
  • Structure of Matter
Courses year 3
  • Bachelor's Project (15 ECTS)
  • Astroparticle Physics
  • Astrophysical Hydrodynamica
  • Electives and minor e.g. Cosmology, Applied Signal Processing, Stellar Structure and Evolution, Radio Astronomy
  • Interstellar Medium

Astronomy in Groningen stands out for its academic excellence andresearch orientation. The work pace in the first year is generally highand the course contents demanding. The first year curriculumconcentrates on laying a sound basis in mathmatics and physics. The third year includes a free minor, as well as a research project which is carried out in one of the research groups.

Credits per year: 60 ECTS; most courses are 5 ECTS.

N.B. The programme schedule is a selection of the curriculum.

Study abroad

  • Study abroad is optional
  • Maximum of 30 EC

(Binding) study advice

  • A minimum of 45 EC in the first 12 months ( binding )
  • Get your propedeutic diploma in the first 24 months ( binding )

You will be offered study advice after first and second years of study. You can expect a positive result if you have earned more than 45 ECTS credit points (out of a total of 60 ECTS). If you have earned fewer than 45 ECTS and are issued a negative result, you will not be allowed to continue with your degree programme.

In addition, you are also expected to pass all your first-year exams by the end of your second year of study. If you don't, you will be issued a negative result and will have to leave the degree programme.You will receive preliminary study advice in December to make sure that you know where you stand.

Please contact your study advisor as soon as possible if you have any questions about the BSA system.

N.B. Some degree programmes use a tutoring system; please check with your study advisor.

English Language Requirements

IELTS band : 6.5 TOEFL paper-based test score : 580 TOEFL iBT® test : 92

To study at this university, you have to speak English. We advice you to

take an IELTS test.


Specific requirements / More information

  • additional subject

Mathematics and Physics.

This is merely an indication of required background knowledge. The admissions board determines whether the specific contents of this/these course(s) meet the admission requirements of the bachelor programme for which you applied.

  • knowledge minimum

What if you do not meet the admissions requirements?

We offer a foundation year for students who do not meet the admissions requirements, in association with the Holland International Study Centre. The Foundation year will help you develop your academic skills and English language to the required standard, after which you can progress to the first year of your Bachelor's programme.

More information can be found at:

  • language test

Proof of English proficiency is required: TOEFL IBT score of 92, a TOEFL CBT score of 237, a TOEFL PBT score of 580, an IELTS score of 6.5, a CAE or CPE certificate.

MAKE SURE TO VISIT for all the necessary information about required language tests.

  • previous education

Secondary education equivalent to Dutch pre-university education is required.

This is merely an indication of the required general level of applicants' previous education.

FOR MORE INFORMATION please visit the 'BSc Application Procedure' pages at:

  • other admission requirements


Make sure to visit 'BSc Application Procedure' at: for all the necessary information about the procedure and admission requirements.

Work Experience

No work experience is required.

Related Scholarships*

  • Academic Excellence Scholarship

    "The Academic Excellence Scholarship can provide up to a 50 % reduction in tuition per semester. These scholarships will be renewed if the student maintains superior academic performance during each semester of their 3-year Bachelor programme. The scholarship will be directly applied to the student’s tuition fees."

  • Alumni Study Travel Fund

    Scholarships for students who are already attending the University of Reading.

  • Amsterdam Merit Scholarships

    The University of Amsterdam aims to attract the world’s brightest students to its international classrooms. Outstanding students from outside the European Economic Area can apply for an Amsterdam Merit Scholarship.

* The scholarships shown on this page are suggestions first and foremost. They could be offered by other organisations than University of Groningen.


The university is committed to recognizing excellence in academic achievement through offering a number of scholarships for international students and researchers. Several scholarships are available for international students who are motivated to study Bachelor’s, Master’s and PhD programmes, as well as for exchanges, short courses and research stays at our university.

Besides scholarships awarded by the University of Groningen, a number of grants awarded by the Dutch government, the EU and (inter)national organizations, such as World Bank or the Ford Foundation, can be used for study or research at the University of Groningen as well.

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