Institute of Astronomy

M.Phil. in Astronomy

Applications for Admission October 2021 - PhD / MPhil / MASt


The 2021-22 course directory is now live and accepting applications. Informal enquiries can be sent to

Education during the academic year 2020/21


The Institute of Astronomy has made no changes to it's PhD and MPhil programme for the academic year 2020/21 albeit measures such as social distancing will be in place.

The assessment for the Astronomy MPhil degree is exclusively by research and a project and supervisor will normally have been identified prior to a formal application being made by the student. There is no taught element. The degree is not suitable for physicists and mathematicians wishing to prepare for a research PhD in Astrophysics and the number of students admitted is small. Many, but not all, of our previous students had completed an undergraduate degree in North America and returned there to undertake a PhD after completing the MPhil in Cambridge.

Historically, most MPhil students have secured funding for their MPhil studies through applications to scholarship programmes such as Churchill, Gates and Marshall.

The aims of the programme are:

  • to give students with relevant experience at first-degree level the opportunity to carry out focussed research in the discipline under close supervision; and
  • to give students the opportunity to acquire or develop skills and expertise relevant to their research interests.

At least four weeks before making a formal application, prospective applicants should forward the following to

Following receipt of this information, we will determine whether an appropriate project and supervisor is available.

Please note that the application deadline for admission to this course in October 2021 is Thursday 7th January 2021.

Page last updated: 9 September 2020 at 09:12