Description of the Program

The minor in Astronomy is designed for students desiring a general background in Astronomy.

Astronomy advising questions should be directed to Professor Daniel McIntosh (

Student Learning Outcomes

Students graduating from this program will:

  • demonstrate competency in stellar astrophysics, galaxies, cosmology and practical astronomy in homework and exam questions.
  • translate complicated mathematical expressions of astrophysics laws into concrete calculations and test these.
  • clearly articulate scientific information both orally and in writing.

Program Requirements

Students majoring in any other discipline (including Physics) in the University may elect to minor in astronomy.

There are two tracks (Track One, Track Two) each requiring a minimum of 18 credit hours in Physics and Astronomy courses, with a minimum of 9 credit hours at the 300-400 level. It is highly recommended that students follow Track One because the upper level courses will be very challenging without the solid foundation obtained in the calculus-based physics courses (PHYSICS 240/PHYSICS 250). Students must receive grades of C or better in each course.

Track One (Recommended)

Physics For Scientists and Engineers I
and Physics For Scientists and Engineers II
Select three of the following:9
Modern Physics With Engineering Applications
Practical Astronomy
Stellar Astrophysics
Total Credits19

Track Two (Approval Required)

General Physics I
and General Physics II
Select one of the following:2-3
Astronomy: Motions of the Cosmos
Introductory Astronomy Laboratory
Astronomy: Starlight and Star Stuff
Plus three of the following:9
Physics of Science Fiction
Modern Physics With Engineering Applications
Practical Astronomy
Total Credits19-20

In order to ensure that the appropriate courses are taken, students are encouraged to consult with the undergraduate advisor for astronomy, Professor Dan McIntosh (