Erik Rosolowsky, PhD

Associate Professor, Faculty of Science - Physics
Associate Chair Undergrad, Faculty of Science - Physics


Associate Professor, Faculty of Science - Physics
2-115 Centennial Ctr For Interdisciplinary SCS II
11335 Saskatchewan Drive NW
Edmonton AB
T6G 2H5

Associate Chair Undergrad, Faculty of Science - Physics



Professor, University of Alberta, 2022-

Associate Professor, University of Alberta, 2016-2022

Assistant Professor, University of Alberta, 2013-2016

Visiting Assistant Professor, University of British Columbia (Okanagan), 2013-2016

Assistant Professor, University of British Columbia (Okanagan), 2008-2013

NSF Astronomy & Astrophysics Postdoctoral Fellow, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, 2005-2007

PhD (2005) University of California Berkeley, USA

MA (2001) University of California Berkeley, USA

BA (Hons, 1998), Swarthmore College, USA


My research program focuses on understanding the connections between stellar generations in galaxies. I seek a broad understanding how matter gets recycled in the universe, from when stars die and that material mixed into the interstellar medium to where the matter forms into another generation of stars. I regard that as the biggest missing link in understanding the evolution of the universe and the life within it.  My research uses observational data, mostly from radio and submillimetre telescopes coupled with novel algorithmic approaches to reach new discoveries.


I teach graduate and undergraduate courses in astronomy and physics. My teaching style is transitional between traditional lecture delivery and a "flipped" classroom. I prefer to spend our time in the classroom developing skills and answering questions. Thus, my courses usually require students to complete reading and take a quiz on the content before coming to lecture. In lecture, I focus on the topics that students have the most questions about. In problem-based classes, we spend our time completing example problems together since, in physics, we are trying to develop problem solving skills rather than learn a body of facts. 

I enjoy teaching at all levels of the curriculum and I'm excited to share what we have learned about the Universe with you.


Due to limited funding, I am not currently accepting additional students for Fall 2023 admissions. Thank you for your interest.


ASTRO 322 - Galactic and Extragalactic Astrophysics

The interstellar medium and interstellar reddening; galactic structure; kinematics and dynamics of stars in galaxies; quasars; introduction of cosmology. Prerequisites: MATH 115, 118, 136, 146, or 156 and one of PHYS 124, PHYS 144, or EN PH 131, and one of PHYS 126, PHYS 146, or PHYS 130, and PHYS 208 or 271. Previous knowledge of astronomy is advantageous. ASTRO 320 is strongly recommended.

Browse more courses taught by Erik Rosolowsky


Structural Analysis of Molecular Clouds: Dendrograms

Author(s): Rosolowsky, E. W.; Pineda, J. E.; Kauffmann, J.; Goodman, A. A.
Publication: The Astrophysical Journal
Volume: 679
Page Numbers: 1338
External Link: