Our video channel

See all videos


STEM@Leeds Team

Educational Engagement
University of Leeds
18 Blenheim Terrace


T: 0113 343 7495

Events Calendar

5:30 pm The 2016 Bolton Lecture in Astro... @ Conference Auditorium 1, University of Leeds
The 2016 Bolton Lecture in Astro... @ Conference Auditorium 1, University of Leeds
Nov 2 @ 5:30 pm – 6:30 pm
Bolton Lecture: School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Leeds Black Holes & Spin Offs Professor Katherine Blundell (University of Oxford) The popular notion of a black hole “sucking in everything” from its surroundings only happens very close to a black hole. Far away, the pull of the black hole is identical to that of anything else of the same mass. However, black holes do give rise to many remarkable phenomena such as extragalactic quasars and, in our own Galaxy, micro quasars. This is because gravity is not the only law of physics that must be obeyed. Matter can be spun off from near black holes in the form of winds and jets that spread through their surroundings and thus cause black holes to have tremendous cosmic influence many light years beyond their event horizons. I will describe various approaches that I employ to investigate these phenomena, and their spin-offs. Prof Katherine Blundell is a Professor of Astrophysics at Oxford University and a Research Fellow at St John’s College. Prior to this she was one of the Royal Society’s University Research Fellows, having been a Research Fellow of the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 and before that a Junior Research Fellow at Balliol College, Oxford. Her awards include a Philip Leverhulme Prize in Astrophysics, the Royal Society’s Rosalind Franklin Medal in 2010, the Institute of Physics Bragg Medal in 2012 and the Royal Astronomical Society’s Darwin Lectureship in 2015. Her research interests span a broad range of topics. She has published extensively on the evolution of active galaxies and their life cycles, on the accretion of material near black holes and the launch and propagation of relativistic jets. This is the 17th in a series of annual free public lectures. We aim to bring current developments in Astronomy[...]
12:00 am Environmental Challenges: Human ... @ Online
Environmental Challenges: Human ... @ Online
Nov 7 @ 12:00 am
Join this online course hosted by the Faculty of Environment at the University of Leeds to discover how complexity in nature arises from a myriad of simple interactions and how this can lead to an unpredictable dynamism. This course explores three basic principles when considering how natural systems are organised: Causality Internal dynamics vs external drivers The mathematics of human ecology Humans like to compartmentalise – dividing things into categories and boxes. They also like to look for ‘cause and effect’, reducing action and reaction to defined components. However, complex patterns in ecology are not always causal and predictable. Populations have their own dynamics that can be independent of external environmental conditions. Although living systems are complex, there are also some clear patterns and simple relationships that appear to be fairly constant. In this course we look at the way that natural systems are organised, and consider how our intuition can help us decipher the dynamic. For more information and to register, please click here. You can find all the online courses offered by the University here.
7:00 pm A story of Mathematics told thro... @ MALL 1, School of Mathematics, University of Leeds
A story of Mathematics told thro... @ MALL 1, School of Mathematics, University of Leeds
Nov 8 @ 7:00 pm
Jane Turnbull A story of Mathematics told through postage stamps Tuesday 8th November 2016, 7pm for a 7:30pm start A chance to follow the history of mathematics from prehistoric times to the modern day illustrated with postage stamps from around the world. At this session stamps, envelopes and postmarks will help depict the unfurling story. Public visitor parking is available on campus after 5pm on a ‘pay on exit’ basis – details can be found at http://carparking.leeds.ac.uk/visitors/ This is a Yorkshire Branch of the Mathematical Association event (www.ybma.org.uk).  Non-members are welcome.  Please bring the sessions to the attention of your colleagues and friends.  Our meetings are very friendly and include refreshments.  Anyone who would like to be added to the YBMA email list should send their name and email address to a.slomson@leeds.ac.uk.  


LFoS – Public Programme


Thanks to those who joined us for Leeds Festival of Science 2016!

The 2016 Public Programme was once again packed full of exciting events that enthused and inspired everyone, whatever their age and experience  – see below or download the programme here.

You can also see our twitter updates, with pictures, using #LeedsFestivalofScience

Public events list

How can you help?

Explore the Power of Water 

Saturday 5th March, 1:00pm – 3:00pm
Thwaite Mills 

A fun packed day of practical science activities that will show how we can use water as a source of power.

This event is free, but usual admission prices apply. No booking is necessary, for more details please contact us on 0113 378 2983 or email thwaite.mills@leeds.gov.uk.

How can you help?

Bright Club Leeds

Thursday 10th March, 7:00pm
The Fenton, Woodhouse Lane

A concept that originated in a North London pub, Bright Club aimed to discover what would happen if comedians, musicians, writers and academics came together to create an evening of live entertainment. These people were not necessarily professional comedians, and had not even necessarily performed before – in fact, they were a collection of bright people with bright ideas, who spoke interestingly and engagingly about what they knew.

Bright Club Leeds presents some of the best and brightest researchers in Leeds, for your amusement and admiration. Find us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube!


Suitable for adults only. Tickets are £5 and can be purchased on the door.

How can you help?

Engineering Colouring Book Launch

Saturday 12th March, all day
Trinity Shopping Centre

Join us in Trinity Kitchen to get your hands on a FREE copy of the brand new Engineering Colouring Book, and help us as we try to colour in what may be the WORLD’S LARGEST colouring page! Meet the artists and our engineers, and find out more about engineering – what it is, how it helps us to live our lives, and just some of the incredible things that have been made possible through this fascinating field!

This is a free drop in event, all welcome.


How can you help?

Discover Science Through Comics

Sunday 13th March, 11:00am – 7:00pm
White Cloth Gallery, Aire Street

Visit our exhibition to see a variety of comics and animations that break the barriers between science and art to communicate an array of topical scientific subjects.

Drop in to workshops with comic artists from Newcastle Science Comic to try your hand at drawing your own science comic.

Join our talk from the editor in chief Lydia Wysocki (5:30 – 6:30pm) to take a closer look at Newcastle Science Comic and their projects to see what comics can do that other mediums can’t.

This is a free event, suitable for all ages.  Find out more information and register your interest here.


How can you help?

Get hands-on with keyhole surgery in Leeds – join our tour of the surgical training unit

Monday 14th March, 1:30pm – 3:30pm
LISTA surgical training unit, Chancellor building, St James’s University Hospital, Beckett Street, Leeds, LS9 7TF

Would you like to have a go at keyhole surgery? Would you like to hear from a brain surgeon and find out what brain surgery is really like and how growing ‘mini-brains’ in a lab is helping our research?

If so, join us in the surgical training unit at St James’s hospital and have a go with the keyhole surgery training equipment which the surgeons use to practice their skills – don’t worry, you’ll be operating inside a plastic person, not a real one.

You’ll also get to hear from Dr Ryan Matthew, a brain cancer surgeon who is also now doing research which involves growing ‘mini-brains’ from patient tumour samples.  You will also find out more about the Cancer Research UK Leeds Centre and its life-saving work.

This event is now fully booked.

How can you help?

The Innovation Story at M&S

Wednesday 16th March, 12:30pm – 1:30pm
M&S Company Archive, Michael Marks Building, University of Leeds

Join our Archivist for a look at the science and innovation behind some of our best-selling M&S products.

Admission is free. Book online here

How can you help?

Matt Parker’s Adventures in the Fourth Dimension

Friday 18th March, 7:30pm – 9:30pm
Conference Auditorium 2, University of Leeds

Back by popular demand – award winning maths comedian and Rubik’s Cube world record holder Matt Parker is on tour again, this time in 4D!

Fresh from his 2013 solo show “Number Ninja” and the sell-out 2014 and 2015 Festival of the Spoken Nerd UK tours, Matt Parker is once more forming a maths + comedy venn diagram with lively stand-up and mind-boggling maths. Now with more dimensions than ever before!

Entry to the show is strictly by ticket only.  Book early as places are limited.

Suitable for ages 16+. Tickets are £6 and can be bought online here.

How can you help?

Be Curious

Saturday 19th March, 10:00am to 4:00pm
Parkinson Building, University of Leeds

Do you want to come along and have a fun day out at the University?  Ever been curious as to what studies and research are taking place in Leeds?  “Be Curious” is an exciting, free, interactive event, suitable for everyone with an interest in health, wellbeing and the human body.  Come and see, play with and learn about our work! Suitable for all ages young and old, something for everyone.  See more at:  www.stem.leeds.ac.uk/becurious

Admission is free. 

How can you help?

People are Messy

Saturday 19th March, 6:30pm to 8:30pm
Clothworkers Music Hall, School of Music, University of Leeds

People Are Messy, by award-winning playwright Judith Johnson, has been devised and produced by Theatre of Debate with support from NIHR Oxford Biomedical Research Centre and a Wellcome Trust Strategic Award.

Its primary aim is to engage young people aged 14+ in an informed debate about the practical, ethical and social issues around decision-making and health research. It is equally engaging for adults and young people alike.

The play, a comedy drama, examines the complexities of patient and public involvement through the eyes of two teenagers with very different ways of confronting a future made uncertain by a serious medical condition.

Democracy, autonomy, personal responsibility and loss are all explored in this engaging, entertaining and accessible production. The play is followed by a facilitated debate, allowing the audience to further explore these issues.

For more information, see the Theatre of Debate website.

Admission is free, but booking is required. Book online here.

Suitable for age 14+

How can you help?

Café Scientifique: Science Slam – Scientific Myths

Tuesday 22nd March, 8:00pm
Seven Arts, Harrogate Road, Chapel Allerton
Did you know:
• If you were hit by a small coin dropped from the top of the Empire State Building, it would NOT kill you.
• There is NO dark side of the moon (though some of the moon’s surface is never visible to us on earth).

Over the decades and centuries, science has corrected many misunderstandings. Similarly, poor communication by scientists has led to new scientific myths which masquerade as good science.

In this festival special guest speakers will each give a short talk about a scientific myth.


Find out more about Café Sci here

Admission is free.

How can you help?

The Mathematics of Animal Locomotion (W P Milne Lecture for sixth formers)

Wednesday 23rd March, 2:30pm – 3:30pm
Rupert Beckett Lecture Theatre Michael Sadler Building, University of Leeds

This event is in collaboration with the Yorkshire Branch of the Mathematical Association.

In recent years mathematics has found itself at the forefront of our understanding of biological processes. Multimillion pound research has used mathematics to study the spread and control of infectious disease, gene sequences and also the topic we will explore in the talk: animal locomotion. We shall see how simple mathematical ideas lead to a greater understanding of animal locomotion and how it influences current research.

Presented by Martyn Parker.

Admission is free.

To book please e-mail the festival of science team (festivalofscience@leeds.ac.uk).

How can you help?

Rodley Nature Reserve

Wednesdays, Saturdays or Sundays, 10am-4pm 

Rodley Nature Reserve is designed to bring wetland wildlife back into the Leeds area.  Why not go along for a visit during the festival?  Wildfowl are present in good numbers in March and Whooper Swans call in most years. Winter visitors such as Redwings and Fieldfares should still be around and the first summer visitors start to arrive – what will you see?

Visit www.rodleynaturereserve.org to find out more.

How can you help?

Discover the Maths around you

Self-Led Trail
Royal Armouries, Leeds

A self-led Maths Trail around the Royal Armouries museum aimed at KS3 students. Information and resources are available here. No booking required.

How can you help?

The Chevin Forest Park Geology Trail

Self-Led Trail
Chevin Forest Park, Otley 

This trail will guide you round Chevin Forest Park, providing you with lots of information about different geological periods.

Trail (leaflet and audio (MP3) versions) are available here. Leaflets are also available free of charge from many outlets, including the Old Courthouse in Otley.

How can you help?

Roundhay Park – a walk back in time Geology Trail

Self-Led Trail
Roundhay Park, Leeds

This trail guides you round the geological features of Roundhay Park. More information can be found here including details of a guided tours which run during the year.

The trail leaflet is available, price £1, at the Visitor Centre, The Lakeside Café and at the City Stationers, Oakwood.

How can you help?

Leeds City Centre Maths Trail

Self-Led Trail

Leeds City Centre

A self-led Maths Trail around the Leeds Market and Corn Exchange. Explore numbers, shapes and statistics as you visit some of the landmarks of Leeds.
Trail available here.

How can you help?

Leeds City Walks – Geology of Buildings in Leeds

Self-Led Trail

Leeds City Centre

This geological walk around the buildings of Leeds city centre offers a chance to look at the history of the Earth through the materials used to build the city over the last 800 years.

Trail available here.

How can you help?

An event to look out for just after Easter.

Science Fair

Saturday 2nd April, 11am – 4pm
Leeds City Museum

Organized by the Leeds Philosophical and Literary Society this fair brings together lots of interesting science-related organizations from across Leeds. Why not pop in to find out all about the wonderful things that go on on your doorstep?