• Offered by Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • ANU College ANU Joint Colleges of Science
  • Course subject Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Areas of interest Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Academic career Undergraduate
  • Course convener
    • Dr Christian Wolf
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Co-taught Course ASTR6002
  • Offered in Second Semester 2018
    See Future Offerings

This course covers the theory of general relativity with applications to black holes and cosmology. Topics include the following. Metrics and Riemannian tensors. The calculus of variations and Lagrangians. Spaces and space-times of general relativity. The Schwarzschild metric and black holes. Photon and particle orbits.  Theoretical cosmology: Universe models.  Dark matter and dark energy.  Observational Cosmology: historical observations, distances, accelerating Universe and the cosmic background radiation.

This course can be taken as an HPO, please discuss with course convener.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this course students will be able to:

  1. Apply the concepts of general relativity and quantum mechanics to the study of white dwarf, neutron stars and black holes; 
  2. efficiently utilise tensor calculus and general relativity in the study of compact objects and cosmology; 
  3. understand concepts and solve problems in compact star research and physical cosmology;
  4. understand and apply the mathematical and physical basis for modern cosmology; 
  5. understand how the tools of observational astronomy are utilised to understand the evolution of the Universe; 
  6. use computational and statistical tools to solve problems; write succinctly and coherently in these areas of science.

Other Information

This course can be taken as an HPO, please discuss with course convener.

Indicative Assessment

Indicative Assessment - Eight assignments worth 100%.  The assignments involve problem solving, computational, numerical methods, statistical, mathematical and essay writing components.

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must have completed PHYS2013 and MATH2305 or MATH2405. You are not able to enrol in this course if you have previously completed MATH3329 or ASTR6002.

Assumed Knowledge

PHYS3001 and one of MATH2306 or MATH2406



Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Band 2
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2018 $3660
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2018 $5160
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings and Dates

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only

Second Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery
7398 23 Jul 2018 30 Jul 2018 31 Aug 2018 26 Oct 2018 In Person

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