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Program Overview

C319 Physics-Astronomy Building

Astrobiology - the study of life in the universe - investigates the wide range of multidisciplinary factors that may influence the origin and evolution of life on Earth and beyond. Such investigation demands intense interdisciplinarity, for which the astrobiology program at the UW is creating a community of scholars, investigators, and educators.

Astrobiology at the UW builds on the strengths of traditional academic structure to transcend the limits of specialization.

The graduate certificate program offers an interdisciplinary curriculum in cooperation with the PhD programs of participating departments. Participating graduate students gain personal and professional skills necessary to successfully engage in multidisciplinary collaborations.

Graduate Program

Graduate Program Coordinator
C304 Physics-Astronomy, Box 351580
(206) 685-2392

Graduate Certificate Program

Participating UW academic departments: Aeronautics and Astronautics; Astronomy; Atmospheric Sciences; Biochemistry; Biology; Genome Sciences; Earth and Space Sciences, History (of Science), Microbiology; Oceanography

Admission Requirements

Students must be accepted for admission by the PhD program of one of the departments listed above.

Certificate Requirements

15 credits minimum

  1. ASTBIO 501, ASTBIO 502
  2. Three astrobiology-only seminar series (1 credit)
  3. One approved cognate course (see program website for current list of cognate courses)
  4. Research rotation in an area outside the student's home discipline (one quarter, 3 to 10 credits)
  5. Minimum three workshops comprising the capstone experience (non-credit)
  6. Astrobiology ethics seminar (variable credits)

Additional credits may be earned through:

  • Other approved cognate courses
  • Astrobiology public lecture series (1 credit)

Minimum cumulative 3.00 GPA for all required courses and minimum 2.7 grade for each elective course.