Description of Department:

The Department of Astrophysical and Planetary Sciences (APS) at the University of Colorado is affiliated with several research centers and institutes and offers a diverse set of resources for teaching and research, including access to observational, instrumental, and theoretical facilities.  Current planetary faculty members in APS are associated with space flight missions, including Cassini, MESSENGER, MAVEN, Juno, and the Emirates Mars Mission.

Current Job Postings:


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The Astrophysical and Planetary Sciences (APS) Department at the University of Colorado Boulder (CU Boulder) is conducting a search for an academic year, non-tenure-track, instructor with a three-year renewable contract. We seek applications from candidates with a record of teaching excellence and a commitment to science education. Nominal teaching expectations are three courses per semester (six per academic year). Significant contributions to the departmental educational mission may be substituted for some classroom teaching. APS offers a wide range of classes in astronomy and planetary sciences, and opportunities exist for teaching at all levels, with an emphasis on introductory astronomy. Instructors are faculty in APS, contribute to all departmental activities, and engage in departmental service. Instructors are permitted to supplement their salary through external grants or additional teaching duties. The position requires a commitment to supporting the diverse student populations in our department. The APS Department recognizes that the effectiveness and creativity of a group is strengthened by contributions from a broad range of perspectives. As such, we particularly welcome candidates from groups that are historically underrepresented in our field and/or have demonstrated leadership toward building an equitable and inclusive scholarly environment.

What We Require
Candidates must have a PhD in astrophysics, planetary science, astronomy, or a related field, conferred before 7/31/2020.

What We Would Like You to Have
Candidates should have at least 1 year experience teaching undergraduate astronomy, which may include experience gained during PhD studies.
Special Application Instructions
To apply, please submit the following materials:
1. Resume/CV
2. Cover Letter
3. Statement of Teaching Philosophy
4. Diversity and Inclusion Statement
Please visit the below website for specific details about what the department wants to collect for the above application materials

TAs, LAs, and Graders

For current undergraduate research/internship opportunities please visit the Research, Internship, & Scholarship Opportunities page. At the beginning of each semester, we hire TAs from among qualified graduate students, and LAs and graders from among qualified undergraduates. Here's a somewhat simplified version of how applicants are chosen.

Teaching Assistants (TAs)

TAs are graduate students who supervise and lead quiz sections, discussion sections, recitations or laboratory sections, serve as class assistants, or perform comparable activities. Each TA must be under the guidance of a particular professor(s) designated by the department chair or his/her delegate.  TAs are not placed in overall charge of courses.

We often need more TAs than our existing grad student pool can fill. Only our largest classes get TA support. These are typically:
ASTR 1000, ASTR 1010, ASTR 1020, ASTR 1030, ASTR 1040, ASTR 1200, ASTR 2000, ASTR 2010, ASTR 2020, ASTR 2030, ASTR 2040, ASTR 3510, ASTR 3520, ASTR 3560, ASTR 3720, ASTR 3800

You are required to be a degree-seeking graduate student taking at least five credit hours. Pay is $1122-$2244 per month for approximately 10-20 hours of work per week, and also qualify for at least partial tuition waiver.

If you have good teaching skills, have taken one or more of these courses, or believe you have specialized knowledge which could be useful to an instructor in a specific class, please send your CV to Troy Latta.

Learning Assistants (LAs)

Certain courses with recitations instead of labs get LAs who fill much the same role as TAs, above, but are undergraduate students.
ASTR 1020 is currently the only course with LAs.

If you're looking for teaching experience and have already taken one of these courses, you may want to be an LA.
Please send your résumé to Jose Aburto.


APS is always looking for undergraduate APS majors to hire as graders.  Some of the courses that typically need graders are:
ASTR 1000, ASTR 1020, ASTR 1030, ASTR 1040, ASTR 1200, ASTR 2010, ASTR 2030, ASTR 2600

This is not a complete list so when sending your requests, please indicate all the APS courses you would be willing to grade so we can determine a fit.
We require that you have taken the course, or an equivalent, in order to grade for the intended course. 
The pay rate is $12.00 per hour, approximately 2-6 hours of grading per week. You must be at least a part-time degree-seeking student enrolled in 6 credit hours.

If you are interested in grading for ASTR courses, please send a brief one-page résumé of experience and ASTR courses completed to Jose Aburto.