STEM Opportunities 10.7

STEM Opportunities is our monthly newsletter for teachers which details upcoming events and information that may be of interest.

Check out our most recent issue below and subscribe here to receive future issues!


Astbury Conversation : Seeing into Cells

Tuesday 24 March 2020 – 15:45-18:00 at University of Leeds

Target audience: For Year 12 & 13 students studying Biology/ interested in Sciences

 Visit the University of Leeds to experience Nobel Prize winner Richard Henderson’s lecture ‘Zooming in on the Molecules of Life’ covering his work and how it resulted in being awarded a Nobel Prize.

Enjoy an interactive exhibition of some of the work taking place at Leeds and find out more about the University’s research in this area. Admission is free and the event is co-hosted with Leeds Philosophical and Literary Society.

Find out more and register:

Find out more via the Astbury Conversation page 

Please register here.


Biology Practical Assessment Days, Key Stage 5 (Free)

12 May 2020 – 10:00-15:00 at University of Leeds
13 May 2020- 10-00-15:00 at University of Leeds
Faculty of Biological Sciences

Target audience: For year 12 students studying Biology at Post 16.

Students are invited to visit the Faculty of Biological Sciences and take part in a Microbiology and Molecular Biology practical activity in specialist labs. In addition to meeting Undergraduate students and a campus tour, students will evaluate the effect of antibiotics on bacterial growth, and carry out gel electrophoresis for the separation of DNA or protein.

This event is designed to align to the required practical activities specified by several A-level examination boards, and will be led/assessed by you, the teacher, and supported by Dr Chris Randall, lecturer in Microbiology at the University of Leeds.

Students will need to bring a packed lunch. Materials and resources will be provided.

How to apply:

Applications for the February session are now closed. Please apply below for the May events. 

Apply online: Biological Practical Assessment Days application form

Further information: For more information please contact STEM Outreach Lead Officer, Natalie Duffield-Moore – n.duffield-moore@leeds.ac.uk

Places are offered on a first come first served basis and students are required to be studying Biology at Post 16.

This event is open to teachers to book on behalf of school groups (min 15 students per school and max 45).


Chemistry A-Level Practical Days

Monday 29 June – Thursday 2 July 2020 at University of Leeds
Target audience: Year 12 students studying A-Level Chemistry

Bookings are now open for our A Level practical days, with a choice of organic or physical chemistry practicals. Find out where chemistry can lead and spend the day in our teaching labs with staff and students from the School of Chemistry.

How to apply:  

Further information: For further information and to book, please visit our Chemistry Practical Days Page


STEM Summer Schools 2020

Target audience: The Summer Schools are for Year 12 students studying Biology (Biological Sciences Summer School),  Biology, Chemistry, Physics or Maths (Food Science Summer School) or Mathematics (Mathematics Summer School) at A-Level. 

Want to find out more about a subject and life at university while meeting new people, then the STEM summer schools could be for you. This year we have summer schools covering Mathematics, Food Science and Biological Sciences. For detailed information about the individual residentials please visit our Summer School page and click the link to the one that interests you.

STEM Summer School Page 

Further information:

Food Science Summer School Wednesday 1 July – Friday 3 July 2020 at University of Leeds 

Applications are now open for the Food Science Summer School: Food Science Summer School Application Form

Deadline for applications: Sunday May 17 2020

Mathematics Summer School Wednesday 1 July -Friday 3 July 2020 at University of Leeds

Applications are now open for the Mathematics Summer School: Mathematics Summer School Application Form

Deadline for applications: Friday 1 May 2020

Biological Sciences Summer School Tuesday 14 July – Wednesday 15 July 2020 at University of Leeds

Applications are now open for the Biological Sciences Summer School: Biological Sciences Summer School Application Form 

Deadline for applications: Tuesday 28 April 2020


Chemistry & Chemical Engineering Day for Key Stage 5

Thursday 2 July 2020 – 9:30-14:45 at University of Leeds

Target audience: For Year 12 students studying Chemistry or Maths and another science at A Level, or equivalent. This event is open to individuals and school groups.

Are you currently in Year 12 with an interest in studying Chemistry or Chemical Engineering at the next level? Join us for a taster day where you will experience life as an undergraduate by carrying out practical experiments in our teaching labs, discovering new subjects, exploring the campus and speaking to current staff and students in the Faculty of Engineering & Physical Sciences.

This event is free of charge to attend and lunch is provided.

How to apply:

Apply online via the online booking form

Deadline for applications: 12pm, Wednesday 20th May 2020. Places will be confirmed by the end of May.

All enquiries can be directed to l.crabtree@leeds.ac.uk.


Engineering Enhanced Tour (Free)

Availability from 20 April – 10 July 2020 – 9:15- 12:00
Faculty of Engineering & Physical Sciences
The following dates are not available due to exams taking place; 18 May – 5 June 2020.

Target audience: For key stage 3 & 4 (max 30 students)

Bring your class to visit University of Leeds to discover new skills and learn about a career as an Engineer. Led by Post Graduate Engineers, students will receive a tour of Engineering, take part in an interactive resource exploring careers plus a practical activity of your choice.

How to apply:

Apply online: Enhanced Tours booking form

Further information: Please note these events are limited to 3 per term and offered on a first come first served basis. Bookings must be received at least 4 weeks in advance.


Salters Festival of Chemistry

Thursday 21 May 2020 at University of Leeds
Target audience: Year 7 and or 8 students in England and Wales

A day of activities and challenges designed to inspire budding young scientists. Students will experience hands-on practical Chemistry challenges in university labs and carry out investigations ‘like a real Chemist’. Gain team working and independent problem solving skills and experience amazing chemical demonstrations. Prizes will be awarded to the top 3 winning schools in each challenge, and fun prizes and certificates will be given to all participants.

How to apply:

Applications are now open at, www.saltersinstitute.co.uk/festivals/

Only £30 per team (non refundable)

Further information: If you have any questions regarding a student’s specific needs, please do not hesitate to get in touch with The Salters’ Institute – Festivals@salters.co.uk

Teachers: Come and meet your local RSC Education Coordinator, participate in interactive CPD opportunities and take ideas back to the classroom, whilst networking with like-minded colleagues.


Leeds Loves STEM talks

Target Audience: KS4 or KS5
Duration: 1 hour (includes two student talks)

We have recently recruited a new batch of Leeds Loves Ambassadors who are ready to give talks in 2020. Our  ambassadors will give a presentation and answer questions about their degree subjects, career paths and their experiences of studying at the University of Leeds.

These talks are a chance for your pupils to find out more about specific STEM subjects and opportunities in higher education. They allow pupils to explore some of the options available for further study and would be ideal for pupils making decisions about which subjects to study at a higher level.

Please click the link below to request a talk for your school.

For more information and to request a Leeds Loves STEM talk

Connect Physics Workshops in Schools

Target audience: Key Stage 3 students of all science abilities.

A series of three workshops delivered in schools that encourage students to think of the bigger picture through connecting different ideas, such as topics from KS3 science, the latest physics research or their everyday lives.

Further information: Please visit our Connect Physics page to learn more and book for you school.

These workshops are suitable for KS3 pupils. Up to 30 pupils per session. Three sessions delivered in series over the academic year.


New Online Course: From the Farm to You

The latest course is Food Science and Nutrition: From the Farm to You. During this course you will follow food’s fascinating journey from the farm to your body and explore new food technologies and nutrition around the world. You’ll learn how food science and nutrition will help you to understand and study the fascinating world of food.

The course is now open for enrolments and learners will be able to access the content from March 16. The course will remain open for enrolments for a period of 8 weeks.

How to apply:

Sign up here: Food Science and Nutrition: From the Farm to You sign up

Further information:

The University of Leeds provides a number of FREE quality online courses to help students make the transition to university.  These courses can be used as a classroom enrichment resource or independently by students to discover exciting subject areas presented by leading academics.

To see what other online courses are available please visit the Online Courses section of the website.


Natural Sciences Webinar

The Growth of Natural Sciences: Wednesday 18 March 2020, 15:30

Teachers, we are offering an after-school webinar to enable you to support and advise students with an interest in studying STEM subjects at university, and who may be undecided about which path to take. Find out how the degree course is structured and the opportunities it brings, as well as gaining some real life examples you may find useful to include in your teaching.

All you need is a computer with internet access and sound to take part.

Further information:

Why study a natural science degree?  |  Wednesday 18 March 2020, 15:30 |  What is a natural sciences degree and why is this programme increasing in popularity with talented science students?  We explore this versatile course which allows students to study more than one STEM subject at degree level.

How to register: 

Register for the webinar here 


Spinal Angles, Statistics and Scoliosis

Curriculum Area: Geometry and Statistics – KS3 Mathematics
Target Audience: Mid-attaining KS3 pupils in Year 8/9

This session is a great way to show students that the maths skills they are developing are used in the real world in various professions.

The students will find out what the “Cobb angle” is and explore how to determine and measure it to understand scoliotic curve severity from spinal x-rays and analysing results for orthopaedic healthcare applications/professionals.

Limited availability Monday to Thursday in West Yorkshire.

Contact stem@leeds.ac.uk to request a session.


Earthquake Location

Target audience: Suitable for KS4 and KS5 pupils. Duration 60-90 minutes. Up to 30 pupils per session.  

Learn the techniques of earthquake location using real data from a seismic monitoring network in Turkey deployed as part of a research project led by Leeds University. We will use and S-waves and you will pick the arrival times at the seismograms. From the difference in travel times of these waves you can obtain the source location of the earthquake. We bring all the materials – you just need to provide pencils, rulers and pairs of compasses.

Further details:

Please contact Jane Dickinson Lead Outreach Officer for Environment for further details.


Listening to the Heartbeat of Volcanoes

Target audience:  Suitable for KS4 and KS5 students, duration 1 hour.

This presentation gives an overview how active volcanoes are monitored with modern geophysical methods, and how volcanologists interpret the data in terms of volcanic processes. You will see several examples from Soufrière Hills volcano in Montserrat, West Indies, and even listen to volcanic tremors.

You will learn how researchers at Leeds University use these results to inform the Government about the state of volcanic activity and how they are able to warn the people of Montserrat about imminent eruptive activity.

Further details:

Please contact Jane Dickinson Lead Outreach Officer for Environment for further details


Maths Fest

Tuesday 24 March 2020 – Leeds Playhouse Theatre – 10:30-15:45

Target audience: For sixth-form students with a keen Maths interest. 

Hand-crafted by stand-up mathematician Matt Parker and maths author Rob Eastaway, Maths Fest is coming back in 2020 to excite students and maths teachers.

Maths Fest 2020 will feature some of the best maths speakers in the world talking about their favourite bits of maths, and will celebrate maths as an exciting, useful and rewarding subject. A fantastic day out for mathematics students, certain to leave them motivated and excited to learn more maths!

Further information and bookings:

To find out more and book follow this link: http://maths-fest.com/


Quantum Sauce: Antarctic Adventures

Tuesday 24th March – The Constitutional – Doors 19:00. Starts 19:30  

Marking 200 years of Antarctic Research. this event features a multi-institutional line-up with researchers from Leeds, El Paso, Texas and the Scott Polar Research Institute

Further information:

For further information please see this flyer. Tickets are £5 and available from Eventbrite:

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/quantum-sauce-tickets-89638090943