Expanding universe. Expanding mind.

Think outside the world

If you are interested in solving large problems with big ideas, Astronomy has a degree program for you.
In our programs, you will expand your mind using tools that can be applied to multiple problems.
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Astronomy News

Read article: ALMA Observation of Young Star Reveals Details of Dust Grains
ALMA Observation of Young Star Reveals Details of Dust Grains
Prof. Leslie Looney is part of the team that created this beautiful image of the circumstellar disk of HL Tauri in dust polarization using ALMA at a resolution of ~5 au-- coming out soon in Nature. They find more dust polarization in the gaps than the rings, suggesting that a dust alignment...
Read article: Gammie Appointed to Prestigious Ikenberry Chair
Gammie Appointed to Prestigious Ikenberry Chair
Prof. Charles Gammie has been named an Ikenberry Endowed Chair, one of the most prestigious named appointments at the Urbana-Champaign campus.  Prof. Gammie, who previously held the Donald Biggar Willett Chair in Physics, is a Professor in both Physics and Astronomy, and is known for his...
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Read article: Grad Student awarded an LSST LINCC incubator
Grad Student awarded an LSST LINCC incubator
Third-year grad student, Grant Merz, has been awarded an LSST LINCC incubator as PI. LSST, which stands for Legacy Survey of Space and Time, awarded only four PIs worldwide. Congratulations, Grant!
Read article: Impact of Satellites on Astronomy
Impact of Satellites on Astronomy
In a new study published in the journal Nature, Astronomy-affiliated faculty Siegfried Eggl and colleagues highlight the impact that satellites for mobile internet are having on ground-based astronomy.  See this news release from Illinois Aerospace Engineering.
Read article: Astronomers Look at Planet Formation
Astronomers Look at Planet Formation
Graduate student Frankie Encalada and Professor Leslie Looney are part of the international team that imaged the circumstellar disks around 19 very young protostars, revealing the beginning of planet formation, and disks that are different and less settled than the older disk systems....

Astronomy Events

Real data, real experiences


The universe provides plenty of room for exploration. Astronomy classes make use of vast, modern datasets to give you hands-on experience with real data. 

Help celebrate our centennial by reaching for the stars.

100 gifts for 100 years


In celebration of the department’s centennial, we’re asking for your help to replenish the department’s annual fund. Our goal is 100 gifts for 100 years.

Illustration of observable universe

Introduction to Astronomy

Learn the basic concepts of modern astronomy, from the Solar System to the Big Bang.

ASTR 100

heat map of universe

Introduction to Astrophysics

Survey of modern astronomy for students with background in physics.

ASTR 210

Hubble image of universe

The Big Bang, Black Holes, and the End of the Universe

Studies the origin, evolution, and eventual fate of the universe, and the scientific tools used to study these issues.

ASTR 350

Stephens quartet galaxy

Galaxies and the Universe

Explore elementary aspects of physical cosmology, including galaxies in our Local Group, starburst galaxies, and quasars.

ASTR 406

Computer generated model

Computing in Astronomy

An introduction to the use of computers in astrophysics research.

ASTR 310

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Astronomy picture of the day

Discover the cosmos with NASA.gov. Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.