Master's Programme Physics Specializations
Astro- & Particle Physics

Astro- and particle physics aim at an understanding of physics at the largest and smallest scales. In this branch of the Master's programme we address the physics of the cosmos and its constituents, ranging from (exo-)planets, stars, the interstellar medium, galaxies  to the large-scale structure. Extreme states of matter in the universe are considered, including the most extreme matter densities, magnetic-field strengths or energies. Students are provided with a thorough background on astrophysics, particle physics and high energy physics processes pertaining to both of these fields. Current research topics include galactic and extragalactic astrophysics, - with a focus on the physics of galaxies, stellar atmospheres, stellar structure and evolution –, high energy and astroparticle physics, and experimental particle physics.  This branch provides students with knowledge on experimental, observational and theoretical methods relating to sub-atomic and astrophysical processes of relevance for an academic or professional career inside or outside physics.

Recommended course of study

Here we provide an incomplete list of lectures that we intend to offer regularly in specialization Astro- & Particle Physics in the future and a suggestion how to fill the associated modules. Lectures and topics can and are intended to evolve with time depending on promising research directions, academic staff, and interest of the Master students.

Those elective modules that are required for the specialization Astro- and Particle Physics are highlighted in bold.

Year 1: Study Phase

First and second semester/winter and summer

  • Compulsory module: Modern Physics (5 ECTS) - all physics master students
  • Elective module: Advanced Laboratory Class (10 ECTS)


  • Advanced Lab Course A+B: Telescope Lab Course (10 ECTS)

Astroparticle and Particle Physics:

  • Advanced Lab Course A (5 ECTS)
  • Advanced Lab Course B (5 ECTS)
  •  Lab Course Computational Physics (5 ECTS) 
  • Elective module: Astrophysics and Particle Physics (10 ECTS)
  • Astrophysics 2: Observational Techniques (5 ECTS)
  • Astrophysics 4: Stellar Structure and Evolution (5 ECTS)
  • Astroparticle Physics I (5 ECTS)
  • Relativity (5 ECTS)
  • Numerical Mathematics (5 ECTS)
  • Elective module: Advanced Astrophysics and Particle Physics (10 ECTS)
  • Astrophysics 3: Extragalactic Astrophysics  (5 ECTS)
  • Astrophysics 5: Physics of the Interstellar Medium (5 ECTS)
  • Astroparticle Physics II (5 ECTS)
  • Advanced Particle Physics (5 ECTS)
  • Astroparticle Physics on the Computer (5 ECTS)


During 1st to 3rd semester: suggested topics (in total 30 ECTS) from

  • Elective module : Specialisation A
  • Elective module Specialisation B
  • Elective module: Theoretical Specialisation
  • Elective module: Interdisciplinary Skills
  • Stellar Atmospheres & Stellar Winds
  • Asteroseismology
  • Variable Stars
  • Cosmic Nucleosynthesis
  • The Cosmic Distance Scale
  • Observational Cosmology
  • Theoretical Astrophysics
  • Scientific Writing
  • Gamma-ray Astronomy
  • Practice Course in Relativity
  • Theoretical Astrophysics
  • Fundamentals of Cosmology
  • Astroparticle Physics III
  • Particle Detection Techniques
  • Relativistic Electrodynamics & Radiation
  • Scientific Writing

and/or other elective courses within the physics master curriculum.

Year 2: Research Phase

Third semester/winter

It is recommended to discuss possible thesis projects with potential advisors 4-12 weeks before the semester starts. Potential thesis advisors are all research group leaders at the Institute of Astro- and Particle Physics, see the webpage for further information and contact details: /

  • Compulsary module: Critical Research Analysis (22.5 ECTS)
  • 2a: Research Study (12.5 ECTS)
  • 2b: Research Seminar: Astrophysical Seminar (5 ECTS)
  • 2c: Research Analysis: Statistics & Data Analysis (5ECTS)
  • 2a: Research Study (12.5 ECTS)
  • 2b: Research Seminar: Astroparticle & Particle Physics Seminar (5 ECTS)
  • 2c: Research Analysis: Statistics & Data Analysis (5ECTS)

The Research Study is the preparatory phase for your master thesis in consultation with your thesis supervisor.

  • Compulsary module: Preparation of the Master’s Thesis (2.5 ECTS)

Elective modules Specialization A, Specilization B, Theortical Specialization, Interdisciplinary Skills : 5 ECTS-AP not covered in 1st and 2nd semester

We further recommend to participate in the research seminar of your group.


Fourth semester/summer

  • Master thesis (27.5 ECTS)
  • Defence of the master’s thesis (2.5 ECTS)

We further recommend to participate in the research seminar of your group.

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