Graduation Information for Astronomy & Astrophysics Majors

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Astronomy & Astrophysics majors are strongly encouraged to begin to think about graduation (and beyond) as soon as they declare the major. For the first few years of the program, the most important steps are to follow the Recommended Curriculum as closely as is practical and to pursue research opportunities and/or obtain other relevant experience. Students are strongly encouraged to meet with the Astronomy Undergraduate Academic Advisor regularly, at least once per semester, to discuss their plans and learn about various opportunities.

Penultimate Year

Approximately one year prior to graduation:

  • Astronomy & Astrophysics students should check in with their academic advisor to mark sure that they are on track for graduation. In particular, to verify that they are on track to complete the Required Courses and General Education (GE) requirements for a B.S. in Astronomy & Astrophysics.
  • Discuss how to prepare for graduate school or pursue other career opportunities with the academic advisor or undergraduate studies chair.
  • Students who plan to apply for graduate school should generally plan to take both the Physics GRE and the General GRE the Autumn before they hope to start graduate study. Performance on the Physics GRE can have a substantial impact on graduate admissions decisions at schools that require it. This requirement is being waived at more and more Astronomy programs. Preparation on where you would like to go matters and will determine if the Physics GRE is required or helpful. Astronomy & Astrophysics majors are strongly encouraged to actively prepare for these tests for the places they are needed. The Department of Physics maintains a webpage with information and resources about the Physics GRE. 
  • Another important consideration at this point is whether or not to pursue an Undergraduate Thesis in Astronomy, in order to graduate with research distinction.

Final Year

Once you begin your final year at Ohio State, students should read through the information on Graduation available from the Arts and Sciences Advising and Academic Services. You should meet with the Astronomy Undergraduate Academic Advisor during your next-to-last semester and complete a graduation application. In order to apply to graduate you will need to do the following:

  1. Plan out and enroll in classes for your last semester. You cannot finish your graduation application until after your last term course schedule is finalized.
  2. Sign your graduation application:
    • Non-Honors students: Schedule a 30-minute appointment with your assigned academic advisor via OnCourse at https://buckeyes.campus.eab.com. During the meeting, you will review and sign a graduation application. 
    • Honors students: You may either schedule a 30-minute appointment, as above, or email your academic advisor to request a copy of your Major Program Form. After your Major Program Form is sent to you, schedule an appointment with your Honors advisor and bring your Major Program Form with you to the meeting. During your meeting with your Honors advisor, your GE and Honors requirements will be checked and you will review and sign a graduation application.

Graduation Application Deadlines

The Department of Astronomy requires students to begin their graduation application a semester prior to their graduation semester. This deadline ensures the classes you take during your last term at OSU will meet the requirements for graduation. Below are the deadlines to submit your graduation paperwork through your academic advisor. Students who miss the application deadline might have to delay their graduation by a semester. The College of Arts and Sciences' deadline is not until the 10th week of the planned semester of graduation but if there are any problems they may not be solved in time.

  • Autumn 2020 (graduate date of December 20, 2020) - Apply for graduation by August 14, 2020
  • Spring 2021 (graduation date of May 9, 2021) - Apply for graduation by December 11, 2020
  • Summer 2021 (graduation date of Aug, 2021) - Apply for graduation by May 1, 2021