“Frank, funny, probing… truly energising!” – June 2019 Winners’ blog posts

After every event we ask the winning scientists to write a short post to be sent to all the students who took part in the zone. It’s the perfect way for the scientists to reflect on all the engagement of the previous weeks, thank all the students for voting for them, and talk about how they plan to use their £500 prize money.

If you’re a scientist, whether in the public, private or academic sector, and you’re keen to experience the ‘best crash course in scicomm’, apply now for the next event, 11th–22nd November 2019, at imascientist.org.uk/scientists Continue reading

Posted on July 3, 2019 by modantony in News | Leave a comment

Improving communication skills and finding phrases that work

 

Aileen remembers taking part in I’m a Scientist when at school. Now a PhD student in Data, Risk and Environmental Analytical Methods, Aileen participated as a scientist in the Climate Zone.

Aileen had had experience communicating her work to visitors at her research institute and at one off events like Big Bang Fair. However, she believes taking part helped her develop short ‘quick-fire’ explanations of her research. Continue reading

Posted on June 25, 2019 by modamy in Case Study, News, Scientists | Leave a comment

Working with the Kent and Medway Collaborative Outreach Programme

I’m a Scientist works with several National Collaborative Outreach Programme (NCOP) partnerships to offer STEM engagement opportunities to students from their target areas.

In 2019, one partnership, the Kent and Medway Collaborative Outreach Programme (KaMCOP), funded places for 42 classes to take part in the I’m a Scientist and I’m an Engineer activities, offering these to their target schools.

Over the following months eight schools have given their students the opportunity to chat online with scientists, engineers and psychologists. I’m a Scientist offered KaMCOP schools a flexible programme of activity, where teachers chose when to participate depending on their schedules and to maximise benefits to their students. Continue reading

Posted on June 18, 2019 by modamy in Case Study | Leave a comment

Long lasting benefits for employees and employers

 

Before taking part in I’m an Engineer, Emma Ryan felt the engagement events she was involved in weren’t reaching those who would benefit most. “Talking to girls about engineering is a big push for what I do,” she says, “but we were going to speak to women at university who know they’re doing engineering… I think it’s more important to go back to primary school.”

In I’m an Engineer, Emma was able to directly reach this audience. Winning the zone then gave her £500 towards her own engagement activities, which she used to leverage support from her employer. Continue reading

Posted on June 17, 2019 by modamy in Case Study, News, Scientists | Leave a comment

Two-way engagement: immediate feedback on communication

 

Before taking part in I’m a Scientist, Max Jamily’s previous outreach experience was mainly blog posts and summer camps. “That definitely sets I’m a Scientist aside, where the main focus was me and my work,” he says. Continue reading

Posted on June 6, 2019 by modamy in Case Study, News, Scientists | Comments Off on Two-way engagement: immediate feedback on communication

Improving communication skills through text-only conversations

 

Euan took part in I’m a Scientist during the second year of his PhD at the Quantum Engineering Centre for Doctoral Training. Answering questions through the text-based format allowed him to ‘recalibrate’ his language to suit his audience.

Euan had done some in-person engagement previously but does not think of it as the best way to develop communication skills. Continue reading

Posted on June 4, 2019 by modamy in Case Study, News, Scientists | Comments Off on Improving communication skills through text-only conversations

Moderator Vacancy: June 2019

We’re looking for a moderator to work with us on our June 2019 events.

I’m a Scientist and I’m an Engineer will run from the 10th to the 21st June 2019.

First rule of moderator club… This is a paid, 10 day job.
If you aren’t free from 8:30—4:30pm on all 10 days, please don’t apply. Continue reading

Posted on May 13, 2019 by modamy in Event News, News, Science Engagement | Comments Off on Moderator Vacancy: June 2019

STEM engagement for scientists’ busy schedules

Hayley Pincott took part in I’m a Scientist in June 2018, spending two weeks chatting with school students about her role as an Associate Practitioner Healthcare Scientist at a University Dental Hospital. Hayley found the experience flexible enough to fit around the workload of a public sector scientist, and it gave her the skills and confidence to do further public engagement. Continue reading

Posted on April 3, 2019 by modamy in Case Study, News, Scientists | Comments Off on STEM engagement for scientists’ busy schedules

I’m a Scientist – Live! at the Ridgeway School for STFC Bringing Science to Swindon programme

On Tuesday 19th March two shows of I’m a Scientist – Live! came to the stage of the Ridgeway School as part of the Science and Technology Facilities Council’s Bringing Science to Swindon programme. The event helped STFC reach a new audience and engaged school students with the people behind the science funded by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) councils, all based in their hometown.

In total, 200+ secondary school students from 5 different Swindon schools (Ridgeway, Kingsdown, Abbey Park, Commonweal, and Warneford) attended the shows.

They put their questions to 12 members of the UKRI community, between them representing STFC, EPSRC, BBSRC, NERC and MRC: scientists, engineers and staff from the research council head offices at Polaris House. Continue reading

Posted on March 28, 2019 by modantony in Evaluation, I'm a Scientist - Live | Comments Off on I’m a Scientist – Live! at the Ridgeway School for STFC Bringing Science to Swindon programme

“Reminded me just how cool science is!” – March 2019 winners’ blog posts

After every event we ask the winning scientists to write a short post to be sent to all the students who took part in the zone. It’s the perfect way for the scientists to reflect on the previous two weeks, thank all the students for voting for them, and talk about how they plan to use their £500 prize money.

If you’re a scientist keen to experience the ‘best crash course in scicomm’, apply now for the next event, taking place 10th – 21st June 2019, at imascientist.org.uk/scientist-apply Continue reading

Posted on March 26, 2019 by modamy in News | Comments Off on “Reminded me just how cool science is!” – March 2019 winners’ blog posts

Moderator Vacancy: March 2019

We’re looking for moderators to work with us on our March 2019 events.

I’m a Scientist UK, I’m an Engineer UK and I’m an Engineer Ireland will run from the 4th to the 15th March 2019.

First rule of moderator club… This is a paid, 10 day job.
If you aren’t free from 8:30—4:30pm on all 10 days, please don’t apply.

Your key responsibilities will be:

  • Checking and approving questions
  • Adding appropriate keywords
  • Logging and keeping track of questions, comments and dialogue
  • Checking the site for inappropriate content
  • Moderating live chats
  • Helping to run the site

It’s actually a lot of fun as the students (and experts) are quick and funny and full of energy. And hey, promoting STEM engagement is a good thing, am I right?! Continue reading

Posted on January 29, 2019 by modamy in Event News, News, Science Engagement | Comments Off on Moderator Vacancy: March 2019

“I was in awe at the intelligence of the students” – November 2018 winners’ blog posts

After every event we ask the winning scientists to write a short post to be sent to all the students who took part in the zone. It’s the perfect way for the scientists to reflect on the previous two weeks, thank all the students for voting for them, and talk about how they plan to use their £500 prize money.

If you’re a scientist keen to experience the ‘best crash course in scicomm’, apply now for the next event, taking place 4th – 15th March 2019, at imascientist.org.uk/scientist-apply Continue reading

Posted on November 26, 2018 by modamy in News | Comments Off on “I was in awe at the intelligence of the students” – November 2018 winners’ blog posts

Demand vs Capacity: November 2018

It’s not a great feeling, turning 5,700 students away. Their teachers, 60 of them, wanted to take part in I’m a Scientist and I’m an Engineer this November but there wasn’t the funding to accommodate them. Sadly, it’s not the first time.

Demand has exceeded funded places available for the past 13 events; and in 9 of those we could have run double the number of zones we did.

Double the number of young people seeing that scientists and engineers are normal people like themselves.

Double the number of scientists and engineers taking part in “the best crash course in science communication”.

The Wellcome Trust, the British Psychological Society, and the UK Space Agency are among the funders this November. If you are interested in getting more chemists, non-biomed scientists or engineers in your field involved in outreach, if you think more students should get the opportunity to find out what science and scientists are like then please write to someone with an outreach or widening participation budget and ask them to consider working with us. Continue reading

Posted on October 23, 2018 by modantony in Capacity, News | Comments Off on Demand vs Capacity: November 2018

Experiential public engagement training through I’m a Scientist

We looked at whether taking part helped scientists from the March 2018 event improve their communication skills and if so, explore why IAS worked as experiential training. The results showed scientists became more confident communicating with public audiences and helped them develop effective ways of talking about their work. The opportunity for frequent practise, honest student feedback, and the text based nature of interaction were among the elements highlighted by scientists as particularly helpful. Continue reading

Posted on October 12, 2018 by modantony in Evaluation, Scientist Benefits | Comments Off on Experiential public engagement training through I’m a Scientist

Scientist Interview Narratives

Here are narratives for each of the five interviews carried out as part of the I’m a Scientist element of the ChallengeCPD@Bath project, funded by UKRI. These interviews investigated how I’m a Scientist works as experiential training for scientists communicating their research Continue reading

Posted on October 11, 2018 by modantony in Evaluation, Scientist Benefits | Comments Off on Scientist Interview Narratives

Moderator vacancy: November 2018

We’re looking for moderators to work with us on our November 2018 events.

I’m a Scientist UK, I’m an Engineer UK and I’m a Scientist Ireland will run from the 5th to the 16th November 2018. It’s a lot of fun as the students (and experts) are quick and funny and full of energy. And hey, promoting STEM engagement is a good thing, am I right?! Continue reading

Posted on October 3, 2018 by modamy in Event News, News, Science Engagement | Comments Off on Moderator vacancy: November 2018

Which browsers and devices are schools using?

Every so often (see here and here) we look at all our data to see how schools use the site.

Taking into consideration how visitors access the site, what they use to access it, and then see how much has changed over the past couple of years.

Our sites have to be mobile-device friendly, ready for tablets, which show a high usage – as you’d imagine. We’ve tried to make them more accessible for screen readers and phones. We pre-register all teachers and students, unless there are specific events which require teachers to register their students. Continue reading

Posted on September 11, 2018 by modemily in General, News, Project News | Comments Off on Which browsers and devices are schools using?

Showing students the ‘bigger picture’ at A Level

“I’m a Scientist encourages independent thought and shows students the practical applications of their studies. Connecting with real psychologists also helps them decide what they’ll do next year and into the future.” – Lesley, Head of Psychology at Bay House School

 


Bay House School is a large comprehensive school with mixed attainment. In June 2018, sixth form Psychology students from the school took part in the Society Zone. Head of Psychology Lesley tells us how the activity supported her students’ progression and taught them the real-life applications of their subject.

Continue reading

Posted on July 16, 2018 by modamy in Case Study, News, Teacher Quote, Teachers | Comments Off on Showing students the ‘bigger picture’ at A Level

‘There is nothing like it! I miss it already’ – June 2018 Winners blog posts

After every event we ask the winning scientists to write a short post to be sent to all the students who took part in the zone. It’s the perfect way for the scientists to reflect on the previous two weeks, thank all the students for voting for them, and talk about how they plan to use their £500 prize money.

If you’re a scientist keen to experience the ‘best crash course in scicomm’, apply now for the next event, taking place 5th–16th November, at imascientist.org.uk/scientist-apply

Continue reading

Posted on July 13, 2018 by modamy in News | Comments Off on ‘There is nothing like it! I miss it already’ – June 2018 Winners blog posts