Participation in research is a defining component of undergraduate education at Chicago. Opportunities for research in the Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics and the Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics take many forms, but are united by the purpose of guiding students to develop and master the skills of inquiry and scholarship. Students may participate as a member of a research group or individually tackle a portion of a larger research project. Throughout, faculty mentoring prepares students as emerging researchers capable of contributing to novel scholarship leading to conference presentations, publications, and future opportunities.​ Recent faculty-led research projects include:

  • Characterizing the circumgalactic medium around massive star-forming galaxies.
  • Developing a planet evolution model that simulates the thermal evolution of both the planet gas envelope and the planet interior.
  • Exploring the distribution of velocities of satellites around the main parent halo hosting the Milky Way galaxy.
  • Developing sub-systems for a spectrograph, including a laser-based calibration system, a fiber optic feed, and vacuum systems.

Students who wish to enter research are strongly encouraged to explore these resources to help them get started. Astrophysics Majors may contact Julia Brazas for assistance in identifying current research opportunities in the department.

The College Center for Research and Fellowships

The College Center for Research and Fellowships (CCRF) helps undergraduates in the College navigate the broad array of institutional, domestic, and international undergraduate research opportunities that are available to them. Faculty-mentored research experiences complement and deepen academic work done in the classroom and provide students with key skills that prepare them for national and international fellowships, graduate study, and diverse careers. In support of undergraduate research, the CCRF organizes and runs: 

The CCRF also provides intensive support to College students as they prepare for nationally competitive fellowships. These prestigious opportunities fund graduate study, research, foreign language acquisition, and much more. Students in the Physical Sciences Division are encouraged to consider applying for the following, among many others: