Nuclear Physics Workshops, Summer School and Open Day

Lead Research Organisation: University of Liverpool
Department Name: Physics

Abstract

Deliver and embed a series of nuclear physics workshops for 14 - 15 year old (Year 10 KS 4) pupils to enhance the physics curriculum in Merseyside. The interactive workshops will take place in the classroom at a key point in the pupils' science education to motivate them to higher achievement at KS4 (GCSE) and above. There will be a focus on the real world application of nuclear science to open pupils' minds to the possibility of varied physics careers here in the North West and the whole of the UK. Pupils will go through an application process and 30 (representing 10 schools) will attend a 3-day Nuclear Physics Summer School (NPSS) at the newly-built Central Teaching Laboratories to give them an in-depth view of nuclear science, through using cutting-edge experimental equipment and a research project. This will culminate in an Open Morning for participating schools and families with demonstrations and activities aimed at widening the understanding of nuclear science and the career choices available by taking A Level Physics. This sustained interaction with the pupils will motivate pupils and teachers to considering the benefits of continuing in physics education.

To deliver nuclear science to 14 - 15 year old (Year 10 KS 4) pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds and partner schools by:
* embedding 2 interactive workshops into the physics programme.
* bringing state-of-the-art equipment including hand held gamma ray detectors into the classroom.
* bring homeschooled pupils into the Central Teaching Laboratories for the workshops.
* holding a 3-day summer school.

To enhance the pupils' understanding of nuclear science through:
* hands on experience with state-of-the-art radiation detectors.
* nuclear science themed experiments, talks and project held at the new Central Teaching Laboratories, University of Liverpool.
* highlighting the relevance of nuclear science research to their everyday lives.

To motivate high achievement and encourage pupils to study physics at A Level and continue to beyond A Level by:
* giving them the opportunity to demonstrate their own ability in physics inside AND outside of the classroom.
* provide an activity that can be included on the UCAS form record of achievement.
* providing family with an appreciation of the subject and so that they can understand and support the choice of A Levels.
* providing teachers with specialist knowledge on nuclear physics.

To widen pupils' appreciation of careers in physics by:
* giving pupils "everyday" examples of the use of nuclear science.
* supporting careers teachers with up to date information of careers using Nuclear Science (Energy, Medicine etc).

Planned Impact

Disseminating resources

The resources we will produce be distributed primarily to the schools taking part in the nuclear science workshop. After an evaluation, they will be hosted, along with supplementary information, on the University of Liverpool Central Teaching Laboratories Website. This will enhance the teacher provision and encourage future partnerships.

Disseminating workshop activities

The workshop activities will be evaluated and a report of the resources will be sent to an appropriate education journal e.g the Institute of Physics journal Physics Education. This is aimed at those teaching secondary school and would be read by the target audience of teachers interested in augmenting their knowledge and lesson plans.

Networking and Continuous Professional Development for Teachers

After the evaluation of the resources we will be able to identify areas that teachers require assistance with allowing us to provide targetted CPD activities based at the Central Teaching Laboratories.

Publications

10 25 50
 
Title Materials for nuclear science workshops (including photographs) 
Description Photographs of radaition detectors being used in a laboratory setting at the University of Liverpool. These will be made available online soon. 
Type Of Art Image 
Year Produced 2014 
Impact non 
 
Description The grant has begun to provide 2 workshops and associated schools activities for KS4. The activities and workshops are themed around nuclear physics and are linked to currently stfc research at the University of Liverpool.
Exploitation Route The materials created for this grant (outreach about nuclear science) will be made available on the internet soon
Sectors Education

 
Description In this case the findings are the learning gained by the process of organizing outreach and day-long open days for this project. The PI has used the experience of the Nuclear Physics, Workshops, Summer School and Open Day Grant to initiate, fund, project manage, deliver and evaluate three full days of science outreach activities. The Science Jamboree project, now in it's second year recruits and trains undergraduates from across the University of Liverpool to design and deliver outreach activities for Beavers, Cubs and Brownies. So far over 1000 young people and leaders have engaged in science activities in a real university laboratory and gone home with fabulous stories of their day out. We've made strong connections with the local scout and guiding movements and encouraged over 70 undergraduates to deliver outreach. The impact on the student volunteers has been captured through questionnaires and a collaboration to evaluate the impact of the event on the visitors is underway. https://www.liverpool.ac.uk/central-teaching-hub/science-jamboree-2017/ news stories https://news.liverpool.ac.uk/2016/12/02/inaugural-science-jamboree-a-great-success/, https://www.liverpool.ac.uk/central-teaching-hub/news/articles/72892
First Year Of Impact 2016
Sector Education
Impact Types Societal

 
Description Thye award is being used to create resources for teachers and school children.
First Year Of Impact 2014
Sector Education
Impact Types Cultural

 
Description Nuclear Science Summer School 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact 43 year 10 pupils visited the University of Liverpool Teaching Laboratories for at least one day of hands-on activities related to nuclear science. Several students attended for three whole days and participated in all the available activities.

Activities included investigating radioactive samples, imaging using X-rays, investigating energy transfers and listening to short lectures on Nuclear Science research here at Liverpool.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Nuclear Science Workshop (Kings) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact January 2016
The Physics Outreach Group delivered the Nuclear Science Workshop for 2 Year 10 classes (40+ pupils). Pupils engaged strongly with the class and asked questions about studying physics at school.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Nuclear Science Workshop x 1 (Hillside) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact 23rd March 2015

The nuclear science workshops were taken into Hillside, a mixed comprehensive. The class was comprised of 26 pupils who completed the handouts and engaged with the activity. They asked a few questions at the end of the session.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Nuclear Science Workshop x 1 (Mosslands) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact 19th March 2015
Two UoL physics outreach group members visited Mosslands. They delivered Part 1 of the Nuclear Science Workshops to 20 year 10 pupils studying separate sciences. The pupils engaged fully in the workshop and asked the presenters questions. Teachers provided the team with favourable feedback and suggestions on how to improve.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Nuclear Science Workshop x 1 (Mosslands) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact 31st March 2015
The physics outreach group returned to Mosslands to deliver the second part of the Nuclear Science Workshops. 24 Year 10 pupils engaged with the equipment and asked questions about further study of science at A-Level and university.

The teachers appreciated the workshop as it had been very timely (delivered at an appropriate point in the curriculum). They also noted that the equipment brought in allowed all the pupils to do an experiment that they would only be able to demonstrate to the class.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Nuclear Science Workshop x 1 (Notre Dame) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact 24th March 2015
The physics outreach group returned to Notre Dame and the top set year 10s for the second workshop. In this workshop University of Liverpool equipment was taken into the classroom and all the students got to use it to conduct investigations.

The teacher reported that it was an excellent set of workshops and using the equipment was great because they only have one of these for the whole department. By bringing the equipment in, it allowed the students to do the activity, rather than just observe it.

The teacher contacted the organiser shortly after the class to tell us that students had reported that they wanted to learn more about nuclear science.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Nuclear Science Workshop x 1 (Notre Dame) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact 23rd March 2015
Two UoL physics outreach group members visited Notre Dame, an all girls school. They delivered Part 1 of the Nuclear Science Workshops to 12 year 10 pupils in the top set. The pupils engaged fully in the workshop and asked the presenters questions about careers in Physics. Teacher informed the presenters after the class that one pupil had approached her at the end to ask how she might do ALevel Physics - the teacher was very pleased by this.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Nuclear Science Workshop x 2 (Cardinal Heenan) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Two UoL physics outreach group members visited Cardinal Heenan. They delivered Part 1 of the Nuclear Science Workshops to 2 year 10 classes (57 pupils total). The pupils engaged fully in the workshop and asked the presenters questions. The teachers were very complimentary and invited the presenters back.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Nuclear Science Workshop x 2 (Cardinal Heenan) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact 26th March 2015
Returned to Cardinal Heenan with equipment to deliver part 2 of the nuclear science workshop. 60 pupils (Year 10) worked with the radiation detectors and were fully engaged with the activity and equipment. Pupils ended the session by asking questions about going to university and studying science.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Nuclear Science Workshop x 2 (Hillside) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact 30th March
The Physics outreach group delivered 2 x 1 hour Nuclear Science Workshops to 2 classes of 30 pupils. They delivered part 2 to the previously visited class and combined the sessions for another class. The students engaged in both sessions - especially the workshop with the equipment. Pupils asked lots of questions of the undergraduates about studying science and physics at university.

The teachers reported that the two workshops were excellent and that it was beneficial to the students as it provided the opportunity to work with equipment and in a team.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Nuclear Science Workshop x 2 (Mosslands) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact February 2016 The Physics Outreach Group delivered two Nuclear Science Workshops for Year 9 (20 pupils) classes. Pupils engaged strongly with the class and asked questions about studying physics at University.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Nuclear Science Workshop x 2 (Mosslands) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Physics Outreach Group delivered 2 x Nuclear Science Workshop sessions to year 10 class at Mosslands. Students were highly engaged with the sessions. They asked a lot of questions of the presenters about science at University.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Nuclear Science Workshop x 2 (St Francis of Assisi) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact 17th March 2015
Physics Outreach Group member delivered 2 x 1 hour Nuclear Science Workshops to high ability Year 10 class ~15 pupils and teacher. The teacher praised the activity and the student who delivered it.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Nuclear Science Workshop x 2 (St Michaels) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact 1st April 2015
Physics outreach group delivered both parts of the Nuclear Science Workshops to 21 year 10 pupils at St Michael's School in Crosby. Students were engaged with both parts of the activity - especially the hands-on activity with the detectors. Students asked lots of questions about studying physics at university.

The teacher was interested in arranging a visit to the university for the year group.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Nuclear Science Workshop x 3 (Broadgreen) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact 24th March
Three Nuclear Science Workshops were delivered at the same school. The physics outreach group reached 81 pupils with the hands on activities. All the pupils engaged in the workshops. They asked lots of questions of the presenter. The teacher invited the physics outreach team to return.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Preparation of materials for schools 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact We've been in contact with school so taht we can host the nuclear science workshops. So far we've had some interest and we will be following up on these to deliver the activities fully.

Some schools are interested in hosting visits so we can deliver the workshops.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description Preparation of materials for schools 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact We've been in contact with school so taht we can host the nuclear science workshops. So far we've had some interest and we will be following up on these to deliver the activities fully.

Some schools are interested in hosting visits so we can deliver the workshops.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014