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AST80013 Major Project - Observational Astronomy

Course/s with Unit:
A unit of study in the Graduate Certificate of Science (Astronomy), Graduate Diploma of Science (Astronomy) and Master of Science (Astronomy).

Credit Points:
12.5 Credit Points

One semester

Contact Hours:
Equivalent to 60 hours


AST80002 Astrophotography and CCD Imaging, or equivalent.


Learning and Teaching Structure:
Online delivery mode, contact via newsgroups & email.

An electronic logbook (compulsory but not graded), scientific justification (20%), detailed project report (60%), short summary poster paper (20%).

This Unit aims to develop the student's:

  • knowledge and understanding of the principles involved in a particular aspect or application of astrophotography and/or CCD imaging;
  • practical experience in the techniques involved in astrophotography and/or CCD imaging; and
  • ability to keep a comprehensive record of experimental investigations, to write a detailed summary report of techniques used and investigations undertaken, and to communicate effectively about the outcomes of their work.

After successfully completing this Unit, students should be able to:

  • demonstrate detailed knowledge of a particular aspect of observational astronomy;
  • write a project proposal which includes a research plan, the project aims, objectives and expected outcomes;
  • undertake independent research;
  • keep a comprehensive record of research methodologies and references/resources utilised;
  • write a detailed and summary report of techniques used, investigations undertaken and conclusions reached in the project; and
  • synthesise the research results in a short poster summary.

Students will undertake a substantial amateur observing project using astrophotography and/or CCD imaging techniques. A variety of suggested project topics will be made available, or students may suggest their own, subject to negotiation with the unit convener.

Each student will work closely with a supervisor assigned to their project, communicating and exchanging drafts via e-mail, and, where appropriate, students will collaborate with each other via newsgroup discussions.

Prescribed Textbook & Reading Materials:
For information about the textbook, follow this link.

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