Diploma of HE in Astronomy

For the DipHE you will study 12 modules at HE Levels 4 and 5 (Years 1 and 2 undergraduate levels). You will be eligible to enrol when you have completed a total of 6 modules, such as by having completed the CertHE in Astronomy.

Any of your University Certificates or Certificate of Higher Education can be incorporated into the DipHE. Relevant prior study with other Universities is accepted towards the DipHE, up to a maximum of 160 credits (8 modules).


Solar-Stellar Connection

Module Code: AA2056

You will build upon the stellar astronomy and astrophysics covered in AA1051 or equivalent and your level-5 study of the Sun (AA2055). You will study the links between solar astrophysics and a range of stellar phenomena and topics in stellar astrophysics. You will explore in detail the evolution of sun-like stars from their formation to their endpoints as white dwarfs.

Solar Astrophysics

Module Code: AA2055

Solar Astrophysics provides a broad introduction to the subject, involving a mixture of theoretical and observational approaches to demonstrate and explain various solar phenomena. You will learn about the overall structure of the sun, including the use of solar neutrinos and helioseismology to probe its interior, the importance of the magnetic field in determining its surface features and the problem of coronal heating.

Exploring the Solar System

Module Code: AA2054

Our understanding of the Solar System is constantly changing as new results from space research emerge. This module will bring your view of the Solar System up-to-date, using results from recent space missions.

UV, Optical and IR Astronomy

Module Code: AA2053

In this module you will develop your understanding of techniques and processess that underlie astronomical observations. You will learn about the effects of the Earth's atmosphere on observations, telescopes, the uses of photometry, and how detectors including CCD work.

Galaxies Beyond the Milky Way

Module Code: AA2052

Using your knowledge of our own Galaxy, you will be introduced to Galaxies beyond the Milky Way. You will use multi-waveband observations coupled to basic physical principles to understand the phenomena of galaxies in the Universe.

The Milky Way

Module Code: AA2051

You will build upon what you learnt about stars and our Galaxy in AA1051 Introduction to Astronomy to develop a broad understanding of The Milky Way. You will learn about observations of the overall structure of the Galaxy in which we live, concluding with the black hole at its centre. You will also gain an overview of many of the processes that are responsible for shaping the content of the Galaxy and guiding its evolution over time. Assessments include a researched essay and question sheets involving problem-solving and explanations.

Sun, Earth and Climate

Module Code: AA1058

Starting with an exploration of the Sun, Earth and Climate as complex systems, this module then looks at the interactions that cause them to be interlinked. You will study developments on astronomical, geological, historical and annual time scales and gain an understanding of the context of such matters as climate change and space weather. Practical exercises extend this understanding and develop appropriate scientific skills.

Energy, Matter and the Universe

Module Code: AA1056

You will acquire a quantitative understanding of the physical and mathematical concepts underlying astrophysical processes and a foundation for study at Levels 5 and 6 in astronomy.

IT for Astronomy

Module Code: AA1055

Gain an introduction to the application of Information Technology in astronomy. After a brief review of office applications, the module provides notes and practical exercises in the astronomical application of IT. Self-study exercises are biased towards applications appropriate for astronomy and cosmology, using Internet resources.

Introduction to Cosmology

Module Code: AA1053

This module begins to explain how the Universe began and subsequently developed to its present observed form. You will learn how the Big Bang created all elementary particles, about processes that led to the formation of today's galaxies, galaxy clusters and larger-scale structures, and how we can probe the cosmological history of the Universe.

Introduction to Astronomy

Module Code: AA1051

In this module you will study both observational and theoretical aspects of astronomy, including the night sky, telescopes, stars, stellar lifetimes and energy sources, galaxies and cosmology. You do not need to have your own telescope or binoculars to complete this module. Students are invited to an optional weekend course at the University's Alston Observatory.