|Requirements to Become...|
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What are the Requirements to Become an Astronomer?
Becoming an astronomer is a career that begins long before college, but the satisfaction of discovering new worlds, and living among the stars will compensate the extra effort it requires. Once you enter high school, if you are planning on becoming an astronomer, you should start by placing your focus on science, with added importance to physics and math. Any astronomy related activities are also a good idea, so get ready to join your local astronomical society and your school's astronomy club.
When you finish high school and go on to college, one of the main requirements to become an astronomer will be a degree in one of the applied sciences, which can include math, physics, engineering, and computing. This degree will prepare you for the challenges of astronomy, as well as teach you how to write a thesis, the principles of research, and other elements required for a career in astronomy.
Because astronomy is such a wide field, the higher your level of education in related subjects is, the more doors will open in the diverse areas of study, so make sure you select a good variety of courses that allow you to become proficient in more than one aspect of astronomy. It is also a good idea to talk to other astronomers to help you determine which area you prefer, and work on research during the time you are getting your bachelor's degree.
A career in astronomy is very competitive, so you must consider earning a master's degree and even a PhD to ensure you can advance to the position you want. Any additional courses in astronomy you take and your own research will help you to become a successful astronomer, so make sure you fill your time with as much of it as possible.
An internship, while not part of the requirements to become an astronomer, can help you enter the field while you are still earning your degree. It will also help you get hands on training, which will provide experience you will need later on, so finding an internship program at an observatory in your area can be a good career move you will appreciate later on.
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