Astronomers

Observe, research, and interpret astronomical phenomena to increase basic knowledge or apply such information to practical problems.

Median Annual Wage: $105,410

Education: Post-doctoral training (61%); Doctoral degree (30%); Master's degree (9%)

Projected Growth: Average (8% to 14%)

Related Job Titles: Scientist; Research Scientist; Professor; Astronomer; Astrophysicist; Lunar and Planetary Institute Director; Assistant Professor; Associate Professor; Astronomy Professor; Physics and Astronomy Professor

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Source: O*NET OnLine information for Astronomers.

More Life, Physical, and Social Science Careers

  • Analyze research data to determine its significance, using computers.
  • Develop theories based on personal observations or on observations and theories of other astronomers.
  • Collaborate with other astronomers to carry out research projects.
  • Present research findings at scientific conferences and in papers written for scientific journals.
  • Raise funds for scientific research.
  • Measure radio, infrared, gamma, and x-ray emissions from extraterrestrial sources.
  • Teach astronomy or astrophysics.
  • Develop instrumentation and software for astronomical observation and analysis.
  • Review scientific proposals and research papers.
  • Serve on professional panels and committees.
  • Develop and modify astronomy-related programs for public presentation.
  • Calculate orbits and determine sizes, shapes, brightness, and motions of different celestial bodies.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Astronomers.

  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
  • Mathematics - Using mathematics to solve problems.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Astronomers.

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