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Dunlap Institute Virtual Summer School – Introduction to Astronomical Instrumentation

Program description: 

The dates for the 2021 Dunlap Institute Virtual Summer School are July 26-30, 2021, inclusive. The Dunlap Institute’s annual summer school provides a unique introduction to cutting-edge astronomical instrumentation for current and future telescope facilities.

The school is designed around both lecture and virtual laboratory activities led by astronomers from around the world who specialize in the development of astronomical instruments. The program will introduce students to the basic principles of optics, spectrographs and detectors, as well as to advanced topics in instrument design and development. It includes a focus on laboratory, computer and data acquisition skills. Students can also participate in virtual career development sessions.


Entrance Requirements:

The summer school is aimed toward students who have finished at least the third year of an undergraduate program, or are in the early years of a graduate program, and have a background in astronomy, physics or engineering.

Potential students will be asked to provide a short 100-300 word paragraph expressing their interest in the virtual summer school, as well as a current transcript as part of their application.  (An unofficial transcript will suffice.).

Please fill out the application form and send a current transcript to by May 15th, 2021 to be considered.


Registration fee:

The registration fee is $50 and we will accept the first 100 qualified students into the summer school.  If you are selected, you will be contacted with further instructions on how to pay your fees.  If you are requesting a tuition waiver, please provide a short justification for this request on the application form.

Note: If you were selected for the 2020 Summer School which was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, you will receive an automatic acceptance into the 2021 virtual school.  Those students will be contacted by the DSS Committee shortly with further instructions.

How to Apply:

Please fill out the application form and send a current transcript to by May 15th, 2021 to be considered.



Every year, instructors include leading instrumentation and observational astronomers from the Dunlap Institute, U of T’s David A. Dunlap Department of Astronomy & Astrophysics (DADDAA), and from Canadian, U.S. and international institutions.


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