* Outreach News Archive * University of Bristol Press Releases

* Outreach News Summer 2007


SCISATIONAL - 23/08/07

The SCISATIONAL project organised and led by Postgraduate Chemist Dane Comerford nears completion after several months of  hard work.

The project, involving 100 Y10 pupils from 7 schools, aimed to make science sensational and to spark the imagination of the students. It allowed the 15-year-olds to carry out research and produce their own film connecting "everyday life" topics  to some of the University of Bristol's current science research. An important factor in this 5-month project was the sustained relationship established between University researchers and the school students.

The participating schools and research areas were:

Badminton School (Cash), Cotham School (Emotion), Ralph Allen School (Sliding Down a Hill), Mangotsfield School (Nutrition), Kings of Wessex Community School (Combustion, Health), John Cabot City Technology College (Lasers) and Downend School (Communication).

Chemists who helped with the projects were Alexander Archibald, Adam Devine, Andrew Collins, Caroline Grainger, Claire Galvani, Fiona Gill, Gareth Fuge, James Smith, Jie Ma, Julie Pearce, Kate Hanford, Mike Nix, Mindy Dulai, Nicola Hetherington, Phyllis Fiadzomor and Roger Kemp and Research Fellow Fred Claeyssens.

The public showing of the collection of the videos will be announced on this web page.

Click here for further information on SCISATIONAL from the Centre for Public Engagement's website .

Bristol ChemLabS Holding Teacher Fellowship Induction Days - 20/08/07

Bristol ChemLabS will host and participate in the first Chemistry for our Future Teacher Fellowship Induction Days on 29 and 30 August.

The success of the School Teacher Fellow position within Bristol ChemLabS has been noted by the Royal Society of Chemistry. Several seconded chemistry teachers have been appointed by the RSC to work at a number of universities for either one term or the whole year through the Chemistry for our Future Teacher Fellowship scheme. This project aims to bridge the gap between schools and universities.

Universities participating include: Warwick, Sheffield, Birmingham, Nottingham, Reading, Coventry and Leeds.

Visit the RSC website for further details.


Bristol ChemLabS Outreach Invited to SciFest Africa 2008 - 27/07/07

Dudley Shallcross and Tim Harrison have been invited to South Africa to give a series of lectures and discussions on Atmospheric Chemistry and Climate Change at the national science festival.

SciFest Africa (formerly Sasol Scifest) is South Africa's national science festival, the first of its kind in southern Africa, to be held 16-22 April 2008 in Grahamstown, Eastern Cape.

SciFest Africa features over 600 events including popular lectures, interactive exhibitions, workshops, educational theatre, field trips, a soap box derby, laser show, high school quizzes, Science Olympics, science shows, tours and even a FilmFest.

Salters' Chemistry Camps - Short Summer Schools for Y10 Students - 26/07/07

photo of Salters Camp students

On 16-18 and 18-20 July Bristol ChemLabS hosted two short residential summer schools that mainly concentrated on pharmaceutical chemistry. These camps were each for three days and two nights. A total of 100 15-year-olds attended the camps from schools around the UK. Students experienced staying in University Halls of Residence and using the new Undergraduate Teaching Laboratories in the School of Chemistry.

The Salters’ Camps are co sponsored by GlaxoSmithKline and the Royal Society of Chemistry.

Click here for our detailed report.

Click here for the University's press release


Chemistry SEAs Work Praised - 19/07/07

Photo of three SEAs posing next to the Bristol chemLabs Outreach bannerThe panel judging the awarding of the David Green Prize for Widening Participation 2007 have praised the contribution of the postgraduate Chemistry students involved in the SEA programme.

‘All the students nominated had participated in valuable outreach work and the panel were extremely impressed with the breadth of work undertaken by the Science and Engineering Ambassadors’ (SEAs).’

The entire cohort of 110+ Chemistry SEAs were entered as a group for the award by Tim Harrison, who works with them. He said  of the SEAs: ‘The range of communication skills and enthusiasm demonstrated by our postgraduate Chemists in working with school students from as young as 7 to Post 16 students is always very positively commented on by the teachers we engage with. Indeed many of the teachers need to be reminded that the SEAs are research chemists and not qualified school teachers!’

Dudley Shallcross, Bristol ChemLabS Outreach Director, commented ‘The contribution being made by our postgraduates in promoting Chemistry nationally should not be underestimated.’

SEA Dane Comerford received the award in 2005.

Bristol ChemLabS Outreach Work Presented in Washington DC - 10/07/07

Photo of Zoe SchneppApart from being a Breen Fellowship Awardee and presenting her own research poster, Zoe Schnepp presented a poster on Bristol ChemLabS Outreach activities at the Annual ACS Green Chemistry and Engineering Conference on 26-29 June. The poster is reported to have caused much discussion.


RSC Schools' Analyst Competition Final 2007 - 22/06/07

Bristol ChemLabS are delighted to announce that Blundell's School, the winners from the regional heat of the Royal Society of Chemistry Analytical Chemistry competition hosted by Bristol ChemLabS came third in the national finals held recently. Blundell’s School is in Tiverton in Devon.

Full results from the 2007 final held at the University of East Anglia were:
1st        Birkdale School from Sheffield (NER)
2nd       Manchester High School for Girls (NWR)
3rd        Blundell's School from Tiverton in Devon (WR)


Background Information

The Schools' Analyst Competition is a national competition run by the RSC's Analytical Division for 1st year 6th form or equivalent. Analytical Division Regions hold heats to select a team to go through to the National Final. Each team comprises 3 students. The regional heats take place during March and April.
Teams are required to undertake various practical analytical determinations based on problems relevant to industrial or social needs. These are judged for skill, understanding and accuracy and are intended to promote team work and safety in the laboratory. Each competition aims to provide some tasks which are relatively familiar to the students such as titrations and others which are likely to be unfamiliar, such as chromatographic separations or atomic and molecular spectroscopy. In this way, it is hoped that the competitors will learn new skills, as well as demonstrate their existing knowledge and skills.

More information from the RSC

CHeMneT members will be advised of the date for the 2008 regional heats in due course.

Chemical Education Workshop 2007 - "Chemistry in the Classroom and Community", Singapore - 21/06/07

Dudley Shallcross, Bristol ChemLabS Outreach Director, will present a lecture and discussion: ‘University-School Partnerships, a Win Win Situation?’ at this prestigious conference on 19 December.


Bristol ChemLabS Schools' Laboratory Programme Opening - 04/05/07

On Wednesday 26 September the long awaited opening of the Bristol ChemLabS Teaching Laboratories to school groups will take place. We will be opening the laboratories most Wednesdays throughout the year as well as other days outside of undergraduate term time.

Please visit the Bristol ChemLabS Schools' Laboratory Programme pages for details.

CHeMneT members will be emailed the timetable at least one term ahead of events as part of the usual e-newsletter. CHeMneT membership is free, click here for details and joining instructions.

28 & 29 August: Induction Conference for RSC’s Newly Appointed UK School Teacher Fellows - 01/05/07

Based on two years' experience of employing a School Teacher Fellow, Bristol ChemLabS will be hosting and taking the lead in a 2 day Induction Conference for the newly appointed Teacher Fellows that have been funded by the Royal Society of Chemistry’s Chemistry for our Future (CFOF) project.

Tim on stage and Dudley on the screen at the Science on Stage conferenceScience on Stage 2 Grenoble, France - 01/05/07


On 04 April Tim Harrison and Dudley Shallcross gave 400 delegates from 28 countries a performance of the lecture demonstration ‘A Pollutant’s Tale’.

For more information please see the Science on Stage website.



back to top

News Archive

part of the Science of Stage Festival poster Spring 2007

picture from the Outreach visit to Wuhan, China 2006