Course program of IMPRS Heidelberg
IMPRS Heidelberg in collaboration with Heidelberg University offers a dedicated curriculum with the emphasis on astrophysics lectures.
The program offers introductory and advanced lectures, seminars, and summer schools, all structured in a 2-year cycle, starting each year in September.
The courses are open also for non-IMPRS students and are held in in English language.
Students should be able to finish with the lecture program within two years, leaving more time for finishing up their research work, completing their thesis and preparing the final disputation within three years.
Introduction to astronomy I: History of astronomy, time and position measurements, stars and the sun, planetary systems, observational instruments.
Introduction to astronomy II: The Milky Way, normal galaxies, active galaxies, radio galaxies, evolution cycle of matter, cosmology.
These two lectures are offered as a three-week all-day class in September each year (block course).
Theoretical astrophysics: Radiative processes, hydrodynamics, plasma physics, stellar dynamics, high energy physics. The introductory lectures present the basic knowledge for any student researching in astronomy, astrophysics or cosmic physics. This lecture is offered as semester course every winter term.
In a series of four advanced courses profound knowledge in key areas of Astronomy and Cosmic Physics will be presented. These lectures are offered as semester courses on a time schedule such that every IMPRS student has the opportunity to visit each lecture. The courses are also offered (partly) as block courses within the semester break.
Observational methods: Telescopes, instrumentation, detectors, observational methods in the optical, IR, UV, radio-, and sub-mm range, X-ray and Gamma-ray observations, data analysis, data banks
Stellar Astronomy and Astrophysics: Stellar structure, stellar atmospheres, star formation, stellar evolution, planet formation, planetary systems, interstellar matter
Galaxies: Galactic structure, dynamics, and evolution, star clusters, hot stellar systems, structure and dynamics of the ISM, star forming regions, galaxy clusters, intergalactic medium
Cosmology: Models and properties of the homogeneous universe, inhomogeneities in the universe, early universe, inflation and dark energy, later stages of the universe, galaxy distribution, gas, galaxy clusters
There are several courses per semester focused on various research topics within the IMPRS research field. We expect IMPRS students to join at least one of these courses.
The weekly IMPRS seminar is intended to provide a central meeting opportunity for all IMPRS students in order to exchange ideas and experience.
In the winter term, the IMPRS seminar is held as a "Oberseminar", ie. as literature seminar discussing current research highlights as well as fundamental knowledge from recent astrophysics literature.
In the summer term, the IMPRS seminar is held as an advanced seminar ("Fortgeschrittenenseminar") with presentations of ongoing thesis projects.
Annual summer schools on dedicated fields will take in Heidelberg with lectures and seminars by invited lecturers and guest scientists. We aim for topics which are of interest for a broad audience of IMPRS students.
Our first summer school was held September 2006 on the topic Physics of the Interstellar Medium. See the current school announcement with also links to previous school.
Certain requirements have to be met in order to get awarded a doctoral degree Attendence of the IMPRS course program is certified by IMPRS-HD.
Arriving students may find it confusing to find requirements for PhD studies from different "organisations" as IMPRS, the Department of Physics and Astronomy, and the Graduate School HGSFP. However, to follow IMPRS-HD rules is always safe. In case of questions, the IMPRS coordinator Christian Fendt is happy to help.
In the case a student aims for a final exam in astronomy, Heidelberg University requires to follow the mandatory "plan of study" as described above. In addition, active participation in an advanced topical seminar and an astrophysics lab course is required. Please check the following webpage for more information and registration. Note that PhD students aiming for a disputation in physics (instead of astronomy) do not need to attend the lab course.
In addiation to these university requirements for all students, all IMPRS students are obliged to attend the introductory courses (if they have not attended these courses elsewhere), the IMPRS seminar, one of the summer schools and two lectures of advanced course program. The topic of these two lectures must be outside their own research field (e.g. a "Galaxies" course for a student working in star formation).
All Heidelberg astronomy students (incl. IMPRS students) are obliged to attend the astronomy lab course ("Praktikum"), unless prior attendence to a similar course could be approved. For registration and more information, please check the lab course' webpage.
All PhD students in physics and astronomy (incl. IMPRS students) are obliged to do some teaching.
The minimum obligation is 2 hours per week for one semester ( = 2 Semesterwochenstunden = 2SWS), e.g. course/exercise supervision).
The home institute of a student may require additional teaching durties - the actual conditions have to be checked with the institute directors and the supervisor.
Please check the webpage of the university graduate school HGSFP for more information about the university rules for graduate students. A summary of rules defined by the Dean of the Department for Physics and Astronomy can be downloaded as pdf file.