Cambridge Science Festival

http://www.cambridgescience.org

Project aims:

- To encourage young people's interest in and uptake of STEM subjects at school, university and in future careers

- To engage the public of all ages in issues of scientific interest and concern

Summary of activity:

Co-ordinate over 150 free public events each year during a fortnight each March. Deliver Schools Roadshow reaching around 50 schools, Schools Masterclasses for 500 GCSE state school pupils and other outreach programmes.

Evaluation approach:

Evaluation forms ask for feedback at public events. Online evaluation asks more detailed question. Focus groups and independent evaluation (Dr Eric Jensen) since 2009

What went well:

1. Positive feedback on how much the public value face-to-face interaction with enthusiastic demonstrators (scientific staff/students) who staff stands, involve visitors in hands-on activity, demonstrate in laboratories etc.



2. Increasing teenagers' participation in the Festival through Schools Masterclass days for GCSE pupils, and programming some attractive free events for weekends eg Science of Extreme Sports.



3. Gradually building up numbers of adult attendees at Festival panel discussions, talks, Q and A sessions etc, through year-on-year improvement of our marketing plans and word-of-mouth.

What was learned:

1. Try to get funding for core staff and Festival running costs supported by the University earlier.



2. Provide more science communication training for University staff and students.



3. Try to find time to work with more University staff on the dissemination / public engagement aspects of their research grants.

About this project

Audiences:

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Project type:

Started (approximately):

March 2005

Ended: (approximately)

March 2010

Tags for this project:

About the contributor

Nicola Buckley

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