Science education showcase heads to Nottingham

05 Jan 2010 12:53:00.000

PA 02/10

The stage is set for The University of Nottingham to host one of the biggest science education events of the year. Between Thursday January 7 and Saturday January 9 the University will host the Association for Science Education (ASE) Conference 2010 - an event which features lectures from world-leading scientists and attracts 3,000 delegates who are passionate about science teaching and learning.

The Departments of Chemistry, Biology and Physics on University Park will become the focus for three days of inspiring displays, lectures and workshops for teachers and science technicians from all over the country. The conference will feature cutting edge science from esteemed academics, current research updates and hands-on practical science experiences for teachers to take back to the classroom. There will also be exhibits of some of the latest techniques in making science accessible to young people.

Among the organisations taking part in the conference are the Institute of Physics, The Royal Society of Chemistry, the British Science Association and the Science Museum.

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The highlights will include a lecture by the father of genetic finger printing Sir Alec Jeffreys, from the Department of Genetics at the University of Leicester; a keynote address on Global Change: Past, Present and Future by Professor Bob Spicer, from the Centre for Earth, Planetary, Space and Astronomical Research Centre at The Open University; and the President of the Institute of Physics, Dame Professor Jocelyn Bell Burnell, one of the country’s most distinguished astronomers, will give the John Lewis Lecture on What’s going on in the Universe?


Frontier science sessions given by scientists from The University of Nottingham will run every day throughout the conference. They will feature experts from across the science spectrum lecturing on subjects as diverse as climate change and carbon capture, nanotechnology and stem cells. The programme also features the legendary Thunder and Lightning lecture, which uses chemical reactions to spectacular educational effect.


Public Awareness Scientist Dr Sam Tang is helping to organise the event. She said: “The Frontier Science Lecture Programme showcases some of the areas of science and engineering taking place across the University. It is a great opportunity for academics to tell science teachers, technicians, and PGCE students about their research, who in turn can communicate this to their students, and inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers. Speakers are from a breadth of research areas and will communicate the latest news and developments, demonstrating how University of Nottingham research has real-world applications.”


The event was last held at the University 22 years ago. Vice-Chancellor, Professor David Greenaway, said: “Here at The University of Nottingham we are proud of our work in helping teachers to enhance their students’ science learning experiences and encouraging more young people to take their science studies further. Through our Widening Participation initiatives, Community Partnership schemes and highly effective science outreach programmes, we encourage our scientists and engineers to engage with schools, running science clubs and other activities to engage with pupils.


“The ASE Annual Conference 2010 is a great opportunity for us and the wider scientific community to share our passion for science with the people involved in primary and secondary education to encourage and inspire a new generation of scientists.”


Tony Leaney, ASE Executive Director for Communications and Membership Services said: “The Association for Science Education is delighted to be back at The University of Nottingham for our 2010 Annual Conference. As the largest science education conference in Europe, our 2010 event includes lectures and workshops, research updates, cutting-edge science from esteemed scientists and hands-on practical teaching experiences to use in the classroom, as well as an enormous exhibition of science education resources.


“A conference of the scale of ASE's requires exceptional facilities and the University's main campus is ideally suited to our needs, providing an impressive range of facilities that are well-equipped and easily accessible. At last year's conference hundreds of local science teachers and technicians took advantage of the opportunity to see and hear the latest in science education. We hope that all our members in the Nottingham area will attend and will encourage their colleagues to come along and experience this unique event and the hospitality of The University of Nottingham.”


— Ends —


Notes to editors

: The University of Nottingham is ranked in the UK's Top 10 and the World's Top 100 universities by the Shanghai Jiao Tong (SJTU) and Times Higher (THE) World University Rankings.


More than 90 per cent of research at The University of Nottingham is of international quality, according to RAE 2008, with almost 60 per cent of all research defined as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’. Research Fortnight analysis of RAE 2008 ranks the University 7th in the UK by research power. In 27 subject areas, the University features in the UK Top Ten, with 14 of those in the Top Five.


The University provides innovative and top quality teaching, undertakes world-changing research, and attracts talented staff and students from 150 nations. Described by The Times as Britain's “only truly global university”, it has invested continuously in award-winning campuses in the United Kingdom, China and Malaysia. Twice since 2003 its research and teaching academics have won Nobel Prizes. The University has won the Queen's Award for Enterprise in both 2006 (International Trade) and 2007 (Innovation – School of Pharmacy), and was named ‘Entrepreneurial University of the Year’ at the Times Higher Education Awards 2008.



Nottingham was designated as a Science City in 2005 in recognition of its rich scientific heritage, industrial base and role as a leading research centre. Nottingham has since embarked on a wide range of business, property, knowledge transfer and educational initiatives ( in order to build on its growing reputation as an international centre of scientific excellence. The University of Nottingham is a partner in Nottingham: the Science City.


The Association for Science Education (ASE) is the largest subject association in the UK and is a dynamic community of teachers, technicians and other professionals supporting science education.

The Association provides a UK-wide network for individuals and organisations to share good ideas and is supported by a dedicated staff team. Working together they have developed a unique range of services to promote high quality science education and foster the professional development of the members. The ASE is independent, an open forum for debate and a powerful force to promote excellence in science teaching and learning, with unique benefits for members.


Story credits

More information is available from Dr Samantha Tang on +44 (0)115 846 7229,
Lindsay Brooke

Lindsay Brooke - Media Relations Manager

Email: Phone: +44 (0)115 951 5751 Location: University Park

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