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You should make enquiries of the universities themselves shortly before you have to make the choice of which tertiary institution to attend.Many people aim to improve their knowledge of astronomy so that they can get more out of it as a hobby or for other reasons, for example, to aid their work as science educators or science communicators.
There is great demand for these positions and you will need to have a very good academic record to be offered one.
There is a similar, if not even greater, demand for almost any kind of position in astronomical research within Australia, because at present most astronomical facilities are being forced to economise on staff.
Some people decide at some stage in their lives that they would like to earn their living by working on a particular aspect of astronomical research.
They may not have had an amateur interest in astronomy from an early age, but have turned to this science through an interest in some astronomical application of mathematics, physics or another subject.
Most of the work is done using computer analysis, so computer skills are very important, and astronomy graduates gain a wide range of computer skills.
Here we must be careful not give a false idea of the number of positions available in astronomical research.
Professional astronomers are research scientists who strive to understand the properties and behaviour of objects in the Universe beyond (and including) our little planet.
Astronomers may The instruments used to analyse radiation from objects in the sky are often at the cutting edge of technology, and astronomers are also heavy users of the latest in computer technology, including the use of supercomputer techniques and robotic telescopes.
Before you can do this you have to demonstrate that you can do very well in some areas of basic science; that is, you must obtain a university degree (or equivalent) with high enough grades to be accepted to undertake a research degree or be taken on the staff of one of the research institutes.
Most universities can give you a good grounding in science, but it does help to attend a university that has an astronomy department or that can provide some astronomy courses taught by astronomers, usually as part of an undergraduate BSc teaching programme.