Finding and arranging
How can you find an internship or research project and what arrangements do you need to make?
Under the faculty or study programme tab you can read more about how to find and arrange an internship or research project. Information sessions take place on a regular basis. These can be found in the agenda.
If you have any questions please contact your internship and/or research coordinator.
Astronomy Bachelor Research Project
All Astronomy bachelor students carry out a Bachelor Research Project. During a ~5-month period covering almost half of the third year, it offers the first intense contact with state-of-the-art research.
In the period November-December, you will choose your research topic from an extensive list with potential projects. This list will be provided by the teacher responsible for the Bachelor Research Project. Consult the Bachelor Research Project course description in the e-Prospectus for details about the teacher and a link to the relevant course website. Projects can involve the analysis of new observations, calculating models for astrophysical or astrochemical processes, or a combination of the two. Hands-on research in laboratory astrophysics or optical instrumentation is also possible.
For students following the double Astronomy & Physics bachelor's programmes, the research topic may come from Astronomy or Physics, but the project needs to be primarily experimental. Astronomy projects for these students that involve laboratory or instrumentation work are appropriate. Projects with a focus on data analysis must include a component related to data collection. This may include hands-on calibration or data reduction. The report should in any contain a section describing how the data were obtained, reduced and calibrated, including demonstration of a technical understanding of the involved instrumentation. Even if the data were not taken by the students themselves, they should clearly explain how this was done.
All Astronomy Bachelor Research Projects are carried out under the supervision of a member of the scientific staff of Leiden Observatory. Each project on the list of topics to choose your project from is connected to a supervisor.
For students following the double Astronomy & Physics bachelor's programmes and doing an Astronomy project need to have a second supervisor from Physics who is ultimately responsible for approving the project (or a modified version thereof). Students are responsible for finding this second supervisor from the Physics department. The project choice must also be approved by the Physics Research Skills course coordinator (Hara Papathanassiou). Students with a primary supervisor from Physics should have their project approved by the Astronomy Bachelor Research Project teacher, who will act as second evaluator. Wherever possible, students are expected to dedicate a chapter of their final thesis to linking the physics topic to astronomy research.
The Astronomy Bachelor Research Project is concluded with a thesis (scientific report, one per group) and a final presentation. While drafting your thesis, use the Astronomy Thesis writing tips and tips for good academic writing. For your presentation, prepare and practice your talk well in advance using these presenting tips and action plan for your presentation.
- November - December: you will get to choose the topic for your Bachelor Research Project and register the project as described in the procedure below.
- January - June: you will join one of the research groups at the Leiden Observatory and participate in running research and perform your Bachelor Research Project. Astronomy students may choose in advance to work alone or in a pair. Students following the double Astronomy & Physics bachelor's programmes do their research projects individually, not in pairs.
- June: you will finalize your Bachelor Research Project by handing in your thesis and giving a final presentation.
For Astronomy students, the Bachelor Research Project has a total credit of 18 EC. The research project is concluded with a Bachelor's Thesis (3 EC) and a Presentation (1 EC), which are credited separately.
For Astronomy & Physics students, the Bachelor Research Project has a total credit of 20 EC. The research project is concluded with a Bachelor's Thesis (3 EC) and a Presentation (1 EC), which are credited separately.
For Astronomy & Mathematics students, the Bachelor Research Project has a total credit of 24 EC. This includes a Bachelor's Thesis (3 EC) and a Presentation (1 EC).
Please be careful to enter the correct study activity number(s) for your project when enrolling in uSis (click for more information). Also, please carefully check if the correct amount of credits are fillied in on your registration and grading forms.
All Astronomy Bachelor Research Projects are graded on a 1-10 scale using the Bachelor Research Project Assessment Form (Astronomy) or the Bachelor Research Project Assessment and Thesis Publication Forms (Astronomy & Physics). Your Bachelor's Thesis will be evaluated both by the supervisor(s) of the project and by the Bachelor Research Project teacher. The project will be evaluated on three points:
- The quality and depth of the research
- The dedication and initiative shown by the student
- The quality of the thesis and presentation
If the deadline is exceeded, it is not possible to obtain a grade higher than 6, unless the Astronomy study advisor deems the delay to be caused by circumstances outside the control of the student.
To monitor the progression of the project there will be scheduled meetings with the Bachelor Research Project assistants every two weeks. Consult the e-Prospectus to see who this year's assistants are. You will be giving three graded presentations during the course of the project:
- What will we do in the project?
- Where do we stand in the project?
- Final results
Should personal problems, problems with your project or problems with your supervisor occur which you would prefer to discuss confidentially, you can contact the Astronomy study advisor, located in room 567 of the Oort building.
The writings and ideas of others form an important part of academic work. The work of others, however, must be clearly identifiable and distinguished from your original writings and ideas. Failure to properly acknowledge the work of others is plagiarism, whether or not you intended to represent the work as your own. All Astronomy bachelor's theses will be checked for plagiarism. Click here to learn how to avoid plagiarism in your writing.
- Make sure that the Bachelor Research Project is approved by the Astronomy study advisor. Register your project by filling in the Bachelor Research Project Registration Form in the Forms section above. Make sure to use the appropriate Registration Form: Astronomy, Astronomy & Physics or Astronomy & Mathematics.
- Between November and December, choose the topic of your research from the list with potential projects provided by the Bachelor Research Project lecturer.
- Enroll for the Bachelor Research Project in uSis. Please note that the research, thesis and presentation are separate study activities. Make sure you enter the correct study activity number(s) for your project. Click here for more information.
- Hand in the fully completed and signed Bachelor Research Project Registration form to the Astronomy programme coordinator in room 564 of the Oort building. The deadline is January 18, 23.59h!
- The Bachelor Research Project formally starts with a meeting and training in research skills, including for example project management, CV writing, science communication and a library workshop. Students following the double Astronomy & Physics bachelor's programme are required to follow the full Research Skills programme. Astronomy students should only attend the components indicated by the Bachelor Research Project lecturer.
- As of the second week of February, get started with your Bachelor Research Project. Over the first weeks, start background reading on research topics relevant to your project. Make sure to meet your supervisor(s) and schedule weekly meetings with them. Make sure you have a place to work, a functional computer account, etc. Also, plan the first steps of your research project.
- By mid-February, you should be spending most of your time on your Bachelor Research Project. To structure your time, develop regular working habits. Do not perform your project in free or filler time. Consider it as a job! Also, do not put off writing your thesis until the last few weeks. Start writing parts of the work as you go along. Do not be afraid to ask for feedback from a colleague on your writing.
- Starting in March, you will meet with the Bachelor Research Project lecturer, assistants and fellow students every two weeks for progress reports, in large or small groups. The Bachelor Research Project assistants will be primary point of contact. Prepare a short (5-min) presentation of your project (one presentation per project) for the first meeting with the teaching assistants, describing:
- Your research question
- Why the question is interesting
- Method by which you are going to address the question
- Nearing the end of your Bachelor Research Project, start planning on concluding the work with your thesis (one report per group). The deadline for the final report will be by the end of June. The exact deadline will be announced by the Bachelor Research Project lecturer.
- Prepare your Bachelor Research Project in a presentation by the end of June. An instruction session and the exact date for the presentation sessions will be communicated by the Bachelor Research Project lecturer.
- Hand in your final thesis by e-mailing a pdf-version to your supervisor, the Bachelor Research Project lecturer and the Astronomy programme coordinator (firstname.lastname@example.org). Also, hand in a printed copy to the Astronomy programme coordinator in room 564 of the Oort building. Your supervisor will check your thesis for plagiarism. The exact deadline will be announced by the Bachelor Research Project lecturer.
- Upon completing your research project, your supervisor and the Bachelor Research Project teacher should fill in the Bachelor Research Project Assessment Form (Astronomy) or the Bachelor Research Project Assessment and Thesis Publication Forms (Astronomy & Physics). When completed, send a digital version to the Astronomy programme coordinator at email@example.com. Hand in the original form to the Astronomy programme coordinator in room 564 of the Oort building. Make sure to keep a copy of the form for your own administration.
- Evaluate your Bachelor Research Project using the online Astronomy Research Project Evaluation Form.