ASA Membership Information

Membership of the ASA is open to people capable of contributing to the advancement of astronomy or a closely related field. This means that the members are mostly active professional astronomers and postgraduate students. However some retired astronomers and distinguished amateur astronomers are also members, and several organisations are corporate members of the Society. The Society currently has over 500 members.

Anyone, especially students, thinking of pursuing a career in Astronomy should consult the ASA's How to become an astronomer web page.


A new International status of membership at reduced cost has been introduced for members who live and work overseas.
In addition, a free Alumni status has been introduced for ex-members to maintain a link to the ASA and share the story of their career path outside of astronomy.

If you wish to change your membership status to International, Alumni (or retired), please contact Secretary, John O'Byrne to request a change before you renew your membership. You can initiate other changes in membership yourself in the membership system.

Benefits of Membership

The ASA is the professional body representing Australian astronomers and we would hope all eligible astronomers will choose to join, along with many other suitably qualified people working for the advancement of astronomy in Australia and internationally. Membership brings certain advantages descibed in the Benefits of Membership.

Along with benefits come responsibilities as a citizen of the scientific community. The ASA has a Code of Ethics for members, setting out minimal standards of ethical behavior relating to the profession of astronomy, along with general guidelines on Conflict of Interest.

Categories of Membership

The different categories of ASA membership are as follows:

Individual Memberships

Honorary Fellow
The ASA Council may elect a person an Honorary Fellow to recognise distinguished contributions to the promotion or extension of the knowledge of astronomy, in particular service to the Society. A list of all Honorary Fellows to date is available here.
Fellow (FASA)
A Fellow is a person with an established record in astronomical research, usually having at least 8 to 10 years of postdoctoral experience and having been a primary contributor to at least 10 well-regarded research papers in refereed astronomical journals. Fellows of the ASA are entitled to use the initials FASA after their names. Those wishing to transfer from Member to Fellow can do so using the usual Edit Membership form and supplying a CV.
Fellows may request International or Retired status to qualify for a reduced membership fee.
Full Member (MASA)
Ph.D. graduates (or equivalent) in astronomy, or others who have contributed to the advancement of astronomy through research or education may be elected Full Members. Winners of many of the Society's Awards and others invited by Council may also be Full Members. Full Members of the ASA are entitled to use the initials MASA after their names.
Note that amateur astronomers are not normally ASA members unless they a strong involvement in astronomical research programs or astronomical education/communication.
Full Members may request International or Retired status to qualify for a reduced membership fee.
Student Member
Undergraduate (usually Honours) or Graduate students working towards a degree in astronomy or a related subject may be Student Members while they remain students.
Honorary Associate Member
Winners of the Berenice and Arthur Page Medal are eligible for admission as Honorary Associate Members with the privileges of an Associate Member but without a membership fee. They may also choose admission as a Full Member.
Associate Member
Educators, science communicators, or others such as distinguished amateur astronomers, who have a demonstrated dedication to the advancement of astronomy may be elected as Associate Members.
Associate Members may request International status to qualify for a reduced membership fee.

Membership status

(please contact the Secretary to request a change in status)

Members living and working overseas are eligible for a reduced membership fee through the International membership grade. International members retain the priviliges of the substantive membership grade for which they are elligible (usually Full Member or Fellow).

Full Members or Fellows who have attained the age of 55 and do not intend to be in paid employment for more than 10 hours per week are regarded as retired and are eligible for a reduced membership fee through the Retired membership grade. Retired members retain the priviliges of the substantive membership grade for which they are elligible.

Members who resign their membership can elect to remain as a member of the alumni of the ASA. Alumni do not receive regular ASA emails or other benefits of ASA membership. However, they may receive occasional updates on ASA activities and invitations to share the story of their career path outside of astronomy with our ECR members.

Other Memberships

Associate Society Member

Any society that has demonstrated a dedication to the advancement of astronomy may be elected as an Associate Society Member.
Corporate Member

Any registered company, institution, association or other organisation may become corporate Members of the Society. Current Corporate Members are:
Australian Astronomical Observatory
Astronomy Australia Limited
Australia Telescope National Facility
Centre for Astrophysics and Supercomputing, Swinburne University of Technology
Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics, Australian National University
The University of Sydney Physics Foundation

All grades of Members other than Associates, Associate Societies and Students are entitled to vote in Society Ballots.

Honorary Members and Prize winners now receive membership certificates. Fellows and Members can get a certificate on request.

All grades of member receive a free subscription to the Publications of the Astronomical Society of Australia (PASA), the Society's refereed journal, as a privilege of membership. Personal access to PASA can be activated by contacting the PASA Editorial Office for the login details associated with your subscription. However, most members also have access through their institution's subscription.

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Membership Applications

Anyone wishing to join the ASA must submit an application for membership and be proposed by two Fellows or Full members. Applications for Fellowship must submit their application wth proposers and also separately submit a brief CV to the Secretary, John O'Byrne.

The Application for Membership Form is on-line. To submit an application you must complete the on-line form with your own details and the names of two proposers who are Members or Fellows. These members must complete their proposal of your membership by sending an email to the Secretary, John O'Byrne specifying their name and clearly indicating in the message that they are nominating you (your name must be stated) as an ASA Member.

Annual fees must be paid online by credit card (Visa or Mastercard only) at the time of your application. You will receive a separate notification when your application is accepted.

Edit Membership Information

Members wishing to change their category of membership or address information must do so on-line by editing their My Profile page.
However, if you wish to change your status to International or Retired, please contact Secretary, John O'Byrne to request the a change.

Renewing Membership

In December each year members will receive by email a renewal notice from the ASA membership system. If you have set your account for auto renewal, you will be notified when your payment is made and your membership renewed. If not, log in to the Membership renewal page to renew your membership and pay your fees.

When paying the annual membership fee, members should also consider making a tax-deductible Donation to the FAA. Funds in the FAA account currently pay for the various prizes offered by the Society. A small (or large!) donation by ASA members will help the FAA build for new activities.

Members who have not paid their fees for the year by 30 June in the year they become due will be regarded as unfinancial. Members who have not paid their fees within 18 months of being due will be deemed to have resigned from the Society. A re-joining fee (one year membership fee) will be imposed on deemed members who wish to re-join.

Resigning Membership

Members who (unfortunately) wish to resign their membership may do so by emailing the Secretary, John O'Byrne. Members who resign and later wish to re-join are welcome to do so without incurring a re-joining fee (these fees are associated with allowing the membership to simply lapse and being deemed to have resigned). Members moving overseas should consider becoming an International Member, rather than resigning. Members moving out of astronomy may wish to remain as a member of the alumni of the ASA.

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Membership Fees

Fees are adjusted annually in line with changes in the Consumer Price Index (CPI). In 2019, the basic membership fees in A$ are:

Honorary Fellow, Honorary Associate Member, Alumni No cost
Fellows $210
Full Member $176
Student, Associate Member, Retired Member or Fellow $84
International Member or Fellow $76.36 (excl. GST)
Associate Society $117
Corporate Member $610
Members within Australia pay GST on their membership. International Members do not pay GST.

However, a variety of discounts apply, in particular to encourage prompt payment.

Note also that only financial members receive discounted Registration at the Annual Scientific Meeting.

In summary, the following are fees paid with different discounts applied:

The fees above include 10% GST, except for international members where GST does not apply.
Note that the membership system displays fees without GST until it is added at the payment step.

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How to make payments

Annual fees must be paid online by credit card (Visa or Mastercard only) at the time of your application or renewal.

Payment by any other means may be possible in consultation with the Treasurer.

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