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University of York Science Trail

York Science Trail

The University of York Science Trail gives Key Stage 3 and 4 school students the opportunity to participate in a day of hands-on science, and science-related, activities on location at the University. The aim of the event is to broaden horizons, raise aspirations, and give students the opportunity to participate in science activities that are not available in the classroom. Colleagues from a range of departments participate.

We work closely with the Widening Participation Office who recruit schools to take part in the Trail. We also work with the National STEM Centre to offer the teachers accompanying school groups Continuing Professional Development throughout the day, whilst their student take part in the Trail.

The Science Trail is part of our Excellence Hub provision for schools across Yorkshire and the Humber and is a key contributor to our targets for this programme.  All universities charging fees of over £6000 are required to submit an Access Agreement to the Office for Fair Access which demonstrates the measures a university will put in place to support fair access to higher education.  The large numbers the Science Trail caters for, and the schools it attracts, make this a crucial event in achieving our targets and in supporting pupils from widening participation backgrounds whilst motivating them and inspiring them about STEM subjects at university.

The event is targeted at schools in the York, North Yorkshire and East Yorkshire areas, and particularly aims to attract Widening Participation cohorts from schools.

Target audience:

Key Stage 3 and 4 school students, primarily from Widening Participation cohorts

Date(s):

The Science Trail runs once a year (typically at the end of the Spring Term).

Value:

  • An opportunity to inspire young people to consider studying science to a higher level
  • An opportunity to develop outreach skills
  • An opportunity to engage postgraduate students in outreach

How to get involved:

We are looking for hands-on science, or science-related, activities that will challenge and inspire Key Stage 3 and 4 school students. Each activity should last for no more than 40-minutes and should be repeated five times throughout the day. Each group comprises about 15 school students. 

What we provide:

  • Five school groups comprising 15 students from a range of schools
  • Logistical support eg venues, CPD sessions for teachers, full briefing information etc

What is required from you:

  • A challenging and inspiring 40-minute hands-on session which can be repeated five times throughout the day
  • Materials needed to run that session

Deadlines:

The deadline to take part in the Science Trail is Friday 24 November. 

Quotes:

'I liked the way we were treated in a mature way and I enjoyed the activities' 

'I became a lot more interested in university and science'

'It has made me feel more confident about doing chemistry in the future. It was really well organised and everyone was really nice and enthusiastic about science with created an amazing atmosphere'

'I have understood things more than in my normal school lessons'

'I like it here, I would come back'

'A great big thank you for this wonderful opportunity'

Who to contact:

Useful links: