The stars that twinkle in the sky are just a dazzling piece of thing to most of us but some people observe these stars and other celestial bodies to learn about their evolution and other properties. The people who are behind these discoveries are known as astronomers. They spend years discovering the Big Bang theory that explains the evolution of the universe. A career as an astronomer is a challenging profession yet exciting since they could explore the universe, stars, and planets that are unknown to the world. A lot of hard work, skills, knowledge, and determination are needed for sustainable growth in a career as an Astronomer.
In this article, you are going to explore some of the golden tips that help you to achieve growth as well as success in your career as an astronomer.
A strong educational background is a primary factor that helps you to start your career in reputed organizations like BARC, ISRO, NASA, and a lot more. For the students aspiring to become an astronomer, PCB subjects along with math and computer science at 10+12 are mandatory. The undergraduate courses available are listed below:-
Then for post-graduation, M.Sc. Astrophysics or Astronomy is required. A PhD is compulsory for the teaching profession.
Students who had completed their B.Tech in Electrical or Electronics and Communication can also select Astronomy for their MS.
Moreover, continue your education as the scientific field is evolving day-by-day. Keep on researching the interesting facts about the universe and do not lose the spirit of being an astronomer.
An astronomer has to face so many challenging situations in their work. Complex situations demand well-justified solutions within no second of time. In this time, the critical thinking ability of an astronomer helps to take rapid decisions. These skills develop over time as you start to confront challenging situations daily. Communicate your thoughts simply and effectively, structure your thoughts, ask a question in mind before finding a solution, discuss with your team to find possible solutions. Honing on critical thinking makes you a good mentor, decision-maker, and indeed a good astronomer.
Cognitive skills mainly enhance the way you process new ideas (thinking, reasoning) or remembering the past activities so that it becomes relatable. The role it plays in the career of an astronomer is huge. So practice some simple steps to sharpen your brain by staying out of your comfort zone or do activities that engage all senses. Gardening is one such activity where you could interact with nature, utilizes all your sense organs while trying new experiences that make your brain refreshed. Improving cognitive skills would bolster your ability in organizing information, planning, problem-solving, and reasoning.
If you are not smart with the numbers then this job is not your cup of tea. Astronomers have to be adept at mathematics since they are dealing with trillions of numbers. Calculations involved in astronomy are very complex which includes distance calculation, age of objects in space, and formulation of theories. Refining your mathematical skills will give you an upper hand in solving complex calculations as it will finally contribute to your research work. The more you are adept at mathematics then your findings would be more precise.
Mental health is a less concerning factor while improving your skills. This too plays a major role in achieving growth. The discoveries made in the astronomy field are not just happened from a single day but due to the hard work of years. While working for years maintaining mental health is essential to stay on work. Improving your mental health is half-way success in bringing great discoveries as you will gain concentration, focus, and patience.
There are only a few times you will get a chance to work alone as an astronomer. This field requires team-work to accomplish a mission. You can either a leader or cooperative with your teammates. The behaviour towards your team will decide the success and failure in your professional life. Being a good leader would bring recognition as well as respect from your co-workers. Researching is a long process that needs attention to different subjects so collaborating with the team-mates will ease your work. At the same time, you can enjoy your work when teaming up that will comparatively reduce the stress level.
As the scientific world is witnessing drastic changes, nothing is permanent. The theories once proved can be wrong after years and it may reverse in some cases. Stick to the same old theories may not bring the desired results. It is sometimes seen that great discoveries happen when scientists break the conventional methods. For constant growth as an astronomer, you have to accept the changes in critical situations. A mind to accept the fast-paced changes occurring in astronomy gives you an edge in your career.
Learning astronomy does not confine you to researches and observations but a lot more career paths are available for astronomers. Select a suitable career path as per your strengths and weaknesses. This is a straightforward guide that points you to some of the popular career paths for astronomers:-
Firstly, modern astronomy offers two main career options:-
Sub-fields in astronomy consist of Planetary, Stellar and Solar Astronomers, Cosmologists, and Astrometry.
There are so many career options, out of science that is also available for astronomers since they deal with physics, data analyzation, mathematics, and computer programming. Some of them are:-