If you're a high school student dreaming of becoming an astrophysicist, you need to start preparing now. Becoming an astrophysicist requires a combination of astronomy and physics knowledge, as well as a strong academic background. To get started, you should identify potential schools and maintain a high GPA in high school. Focus on excelling in mathematics, science, and computer science courses.
Astronomers study the origin and composition of the universe, including its planets, stars, galaxies and black holes. The American Institute of Physics (AIP) has an interactive tool called GradSchoolShopper to help you find a suitable graduate program in physics, astronomy, or a related field. Chemistry and physics courses are also essential for high school students who want to pursue astrophysics. Most universities require at least one year of science in high school and two years of mathematics in high school.
However, this minimum training is not enough for those planning to major in science. To become a successful astrophysicist, you must be successful as a student from high school through college and graduate work. In particular, students planning to go to graduate school in astronomy should have taken courses in physics that covered electricity and magnetism, atomic and nuclear physics, thermodynamics, statistical mechanics, and quantum theory. The strength of a school's astrophysics program is closely tied to the quality of its mathematics and physics programs. To become an astrophysicist, you need to be prepared for the long journey ahead.
Start by researching potential schools and maintaining a high GPA in high school. Additionally, take courses in physics that cover electricity and magnetism, atomic and nuclear physics, thermodynamics, statistical mechanics, and quantum theory.