Start date

0.5 year(s) full-time


Program Code

AUD$ 18,550 per annum (per 0.5 EFTSL) for students enrolled in 2024

English Language Requirements
  • IELTS total [6.5]
  • IELTS reading [6.0]
  • IELTS writing [6.0]
Equivalent English qualifications (PDF)

International Admission by Country
See full entry requirements

This program is not available to students wishing to study in Australia on a student visa

Degree overview

  • Expand your knowledge on space issues through a personalised research project.
  • Extend your learning from the Southern Hemisphere Space Studies Program (SH-SSP), offered by UniSA and the International Space University.
  • Study at the No. 1 university in SA for learning resources1 and skills development2

1ComparED (QILT) Student Experience Survey 2020-21 – Learning Resources Indicator (Undergraduate and Postgraduate). SA public universities.

22022 Good Universities Guide – Postgraduate.



The Graduate Certificate in Space Studies is a chance to broaden your understanding of issues related to space.

Designed for graduates, professionals, skilled practitioners and space enthusiasts, you will be immersed in the challenges and opportunities of the space industry. Gain experience in your area of interest through a personalised research project under the supervision and advice from space industry experts.

In the initial three weeks we kick off the program by supporting you in the development of your project ideas whilst developing essential research skills. You will be mentored by space experts who will guide you as you undertake your research on campus or online.

The Graduate Certificate in Space Studies is offered once a year at the beginning of Study Period 5 in July.

On-campus teaching for this program is based at the Mawson Lakes campus. Only 20 minutes from the city centre with easy parking. The Mawson Lakes campus is also accessible by bus and train with the Mawson Lakes train station only a short walk.

Note: Program fees stated above. If an applicant completes the Southern Hemisphere Space Program, 50% of the fee is credited.

Southern Hemisphere Space Studies Program

The Southern Hemisphere Space Studies Program (SH-SSP) comprises the first half of this Graduate Certificate in Space Studies. This is a joint program between the University of South Australia and the International Space University (ISU), delivered as an intensive, five-week, live-in experience during the southern hemisphere summer. Completion is a UniSA prerequisite for this qualification1.

Studies are based on the international, intercultural and interdisciplinary educational philosophy for which the ISU is renowned. It is conducted jointly with UniSA, and graduates are awarded an SH-SSP Executive Certificate.

The SH-SSP focuses on all aspects of the space sector and provides a multidisciplinary understanding of the key activities and areas of knowledge required by today's space professions, including:

  • space science and exploration
  • space applications and services
  • human spaceflight and life sciences
  • space systems engineering and technologies
  • space policy, economics and law
  • space business and project management
  • space humanities, communications, art and culture

1 An alternative prerequisite is completion of an International Space University Space Studies Program held elsewhere in the world.

What you'll learn

What you Learn

Research topics are varied and have previously included CubeSats for astronomy, potential atmospheres for a Martian greenhouse, investigating open-source machine learning for on-board nanosatellites and improving reliability performance in rocket engines. Specific research topics vary and can come from any of the numerous subjects introduced during the Southern Hemisphere Space Studies Program that you would like to investigate further.

Degree structure

Course name Area and cat no. Units Reference  
ISU Southern Hemisphere Summer Space Program - elective course 9
UniSA Component
Space Studies Project ENGG 5010 9 Rule(s): 2

Study hours

For each course you study, you will need to allocate time for various classes such as lectures, tutorials, workshops, seminars and practicals. Plus you will need additional hours to study in your own time to complete assignments, readings and projects, as well as to contribute to online discussion forums (independent study). So as a general rule, if you are studying full-time you would need to allocate 12–26 hours of study when at university and 14–28 hours of independent study per week.



Your assessment will include:

  • project concept, proposal and report
  • participation in presentation of your project report, either in person or via video conference.

Global opportunities

The Graduate Certificate in Space Studies is based on the international, intercultural and interdisciplinary educational philosophy for which the International Space University (ISU) is renowned. As a graduate of this truly global qualification, you could consider a career anywhere in - or out of - the world:

  • space technology (design of space launch systems, space vehicle component design and satellite payloads)
  • telecommunications
  • earth observation/remote sensing
  • space policy and regulation
  • space tourism
  • applications of space technologies

To be inspired about where space-related qualifications can lead you, look no further than the success stories on the International Space University (ISU) website.

Global opportunities

Why Graduate Certificate in Space Studies

Why this Degree

The space industry is emerging as one of the most lucrative industries globally.

The industry was valued at US$360 billion in 2019 and is projected to reach US$558 billion by 2026. Much of this growth is driven by demand for nanosatellites and re-useable launch vehicle systems supported by the massive investment in development of these next generation space systems.

With the announcement of the Australian Space Agency and federal investment, it is expected that by 2030, the value of the local space industry will have tripled to $12 billion and create up to 20,000 jobs.

The Graduate Certificate in Space Studies program will appeal to people within space-related industries or those who have a genuine interest in space. Students will be drawn from and enter employment in the following space sectors:

• Space science and technology (design of space launch systems, space vehicle component design and satellite payloads)
• Telecommunications
• Earth observation / Remote sensing
• Space policy and regulation
• Space mission design
• Applications of space technologies

Career outcomes

Your career

Graduates can go on to find employment in:

  • analysis
  • research
  • policy advice
  • project management
  • science
  • engineering

Industry facts


The Australian Space Industry is currently worth $4 billion and estimated to grow by more than $8 billion by 2030

(Global Australia 2022)


The Australian Space sector is growing at an annual rate of 7.1 per cent, outpacing GDP

(Global Australia 2022)


Since 2018, the Australian Government has invested over $800 million with aims to triple the size of the Space Industry to $12 billion and create up to 20,000 jobs by 2030.

(Global Australia 2022)

How to apply

International students wishing to apply for this program must complete the application form and return it via email to For information about the appropriate Australia visa for international visitors, go to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) website.

International applicants can not study the program under a student visa. It is your responsibility as an applicant to determine what type of visa you require in order to complete any part of this program onshore. 


Every year, over 2,500 UniSA students are supported in their studies through scholarships and grants worth millions of dollars. Check out the scholarships below. One of them may be perfect for you. Visit our scholarships page for more.

More scholarships

Your study experience and support

As a UniSA student, you will have unique access to work placement opportunities, overseas study tours and exchanges, networking events, internships, guest speakers and more.

Our campuses are equipped with state-of-the-art facilities including modern lecture theatres, libraries, workshops and laboratories, as well as spaces that simulate real work environments. These are all supported by the latest technologies and a 24/7 online learning platform. We have health services on campus, gymnasiums, technology zones and great student lounges. You will also gain access to a range of community clinics, which provide professional and cost effective services in areas of health, business, law and psychology. There are campus sport activities to keep you active, and if you are keen to explore the social side of university life, there are movies, cooking demonstrations, parties and lots more.

Adelaide also has a variety of accommodation options to suit different requirements and budgets. Options include dedicated student accommodation and private rentals. See our long-term accommodation pages, or explore our student accommodation by Scape on Bank Street in Adelaide’s lively cultural precinct, an ideal location for students. It is within easy reach of UniSA’s city and metropolitan campuses, Rundle Mall shopping, the Central Market, Chinatown, and the West End’s vibrant nightlife. It is also across the road from the Adelaide train station, and on bus and tram routes.

Student services

Student services

Our international student services provide you with all the support you need at university. We want you to succeed, and if you need help, we're here to assist. You can access a full range of support services, including:

  • career advice and mentoring
  • help with student visas and health cover
  • personal counselling
  • academic counselling
  • fees and finance help
  • common rooms
  • prayer rooms
  • security officers
  • accommodation services 
  • as well as services offered through our student association, USASA.

We also offer study support from our Learning Advisers face-to-face or online. They are here to help you develop academically and professionally during your studies, and can offer help with the English language too. When you become a UniSA student, you can also contact Campus Central for help with anything related to your degree. They will help you with your enrolment, ID cards, fees, timetables and more.

24/7 digital environment

Our learnonline facilities include a personal learning environment with virtual classrooms, lecture recordings, emails, learning support, administration, library access and results. The environment is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so you can tailor your learning to your life. We are continually investing in innovative digital technologies for a high-quality student learning experience.

Student services

Your campus

We have six campuses in metropolitan and regional areas, each with modern facilities including lecture theatres, libraries and laboratories, as well as spaces that simulate real work environments.

Location This degree is delivered at the following campus.

Your program director

Dr Ady James is an Associate Professor at UniSA where he teaches Systems Engineering, Space Studies and Space Science.

He is Co-Director for the Southern Hemisphere Space Studies Program and the Director of Education & Training with the SmartSat CRC.

He obtained a Ph.D. in Space Science at University College London’s Department of Space and Climate Physics in 1997, where he developed a fast ion spectrometer for the Russian Mars 96 spacecraft. After completing his PhD he worked on various space programs including Mars 96, Cluster II, XMM Newton, MOSES and, most recently, Solar-B (Hinode) launched in 2006. He then spent 4 years as project manager for the Basic Technology Smart X-ray Optics program up until October 2010 and then as Systems Engineer for the VIS instrument on the ESA Euclid Space project until early 2012.

In early 2012 Dr James moved to Australia to establish a local node of the Mullard Space Science Laboratory (MSSL), during this time he has taught Project Management and Systems Engineering as well as supervising numerous MSc and PhD student. From 2013 until it’s closure in 2017 Dr James was Academic Director for the UCL Australia campus. Dr James has been involved in the Southern Hemisphere Space Studies Program since 2012 and was co-Director for the 2018, 2019 and 2020 programs.

Dr James is a Fellow of the Association of Project Management and Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

AsPr Ady James

Program Director

Portrait image for AsPr Ady James
Portrait image for AsPr Ady James

AsPr Ady James

Program Director


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