Each summer RSAA offers a number of Summer Research Scholarships, which enable suitably qualified undergraduate students to spend 9 weeks at Mount Stromlo Observatory working on a research project under the supervision of an RSAA astronomer or instrument scientist. The scholarships provide a first-hand view of the work at a research observatory and scholars have access to state-of-the-art optical, infrared, radio, computational and laboratory facilities. Areas of research include instrumentation for astronomy and space, star formation, stellar evolution, galactic dynamics, observational cosmology, active galactic nuclei, interstellar-medium physics, computational astrophysics and planetary science.
These scholarships are intended for currently-enrolled undergraduate students completing the third or final year of a full-time course leading to an honours degree. Outstanding second-year students who are intending to complete an honours degree may also be considered.
Please note: The AITC Summer Student Program/Northrop Grumman Global Externship Program that is offered to undergraduate students studying engineering, science, computer science or mathematics will be run as part of the Summer Research Scholarships program in 2023/2024. For application procedure and deadline, please see below.
Program and application dates
The RSAA Summer Research Scholarship/Internship (including the AITC Summer Student Program/Northrop Grumman Global Externship Program) will be run over 8 weeks from Monday 20th November 2023 to Friday 19th January 2024.
Important information for applicants applying for an astronomy project (for AITC applicants, please read the information on the AITC Summer Student Program page):
Applicants must be currently enrolled as students (international and domestic) at an Australian University in their 3rd or final year. Students studying at universities in New Zealand are welcome to apply.
- Summer Research Interns will receive a weekly stipend scholarship (tax-free) of AUD$150 for the full duration of the program.
- Out-of-state students will receive accommodation at Burgmann College. This includes room and all meals provided, as well access to activities and other amenities offered by Burgmann College.
- Out-of-state students are eligible for reimbursement of one return domestic airfare.
Applications for the 2023-24 intake have closed now. Please check back on this page for future intakes in 2024-25.
Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander students: RSAA has dedicated places for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander students. Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander students are strongly encouraged to apply.
If you have questions, please contact Dr Trevor Mendel for the RSAA Summer Research Scholarship and Associate Professor Tony Travouillon for the AITC Summer program, contact details below.
RSAA summer research program contacts
- Summer Research Scholarship Program: Dr Trevor Mendel
- AITC Summer Student Program: Associate Professor Tony Travouillon
- Student administration officer: Sam Slater
- All participants will receive a statement of participation at the end of the program.
- The primary working location will be Mount Stromlo Observatory.
- Transport to and from Mount Stromlo Observatory is the responsibility of the student. A free shuttle bus is available to students between the ANU main campus in the morning (leaving campus at around 8:20 a.m. and arriving at 9:00 a.m. at Mount Stromlo) and the evening (departing Mount Stromlo at 5:00 p.m.).
- Students must be available for the full duration of the program (with the exception of the Christmas break). This is a non-negotiable requirement. The internship runs Monday-Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For work out of normal business hours, arrangements have to be made with the supervisor (for example for lab work, testing etc.).
- IMPORTANT: The ANU Summer Research Scholarship cannot be extended beyond the normal duration of the scholarship program. Students interested in applying for a program extension must therefore plan to support themselves, and find alternative accommodation, beyond the normal duration of the scholarship program.
Available summer scholarship projects
You can find available summer scholarship projects on the potential projects page.