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A new initiative involving optoelectronics aims to get more young people studying science subjects at Standard grade.

The Optoelectronics College, whose members include researchers and teachers, is to create continuing professional development for 200 Scottish science teachers.

Training will allow teachers to guide pupils aged 12 and 13 through "stimulating, up-to-date experiments" as an "exciting way" to deliver some parts of A Curriculum for Excellence. These could involve liquid crystal displays, plasma displays, video projectors, lasers (above), CDs, solar cells and optical fibres.

The pilot will take place in Scotland, but another is planned for England. Trials will run in selected schools in 2008-09, and the full Scottish pilot is scheduled for 2009-10.

The project is backed by the Rank Prize Funds, a UK charity involved in the research and teaching of optoelectronics.

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