7th January 2005 at 00:00
CONFERENCES AND COURSES. The Association for Science Education Scotland's annual conference will be held in Peebles, March 4-6. Euan Robson, deputy minister for education, will give an update on the next science curriculum incorporating the 3-18 curriculum review. In his talk, "Did we land on the Moon?", Dr Martin Hendry of Glasgow University will examine the science behind the "moon hoax" theories.

The British Association for the Advancement of Science's annual festival is in Dublin, September 5-9. The theme, "Setting the agenda for science", will be concerned with ownership and control of science and technology and the role of the scientist in an increasingly public arena. Tel: 020 7973 3074;


Concerned about signs that student numbers taking up biosciences at degree level are declining, the Biosciences Federation has set up a multi-sector working group. This is collecting the views by January 11 of organisations and individuals involved in biological education from infant school upwards to make recommendations on how young people can be "enthused with the excitement of the biosciences". To fill in the working group's questionnaire on essential skills and knowledge needed by students, contact: Dr Mike Withnall, tel: 020 7580 5530;

The Oxfordshire Science Festival takes place January 22 to February 6.

Events, many of which are free, include: The Visions of Science Photographic Awards exhibition at The Museum of Oxford; schools workshops including "The DNA revolution" for key stage 3 and cartoon science for key stage 2; and Family Science Sunday, February 6.

The Oxford Trust, tel: 01865 728953; National Science Week is March 11-20, with festivals, talks, chances to conduct experiments, school trips, visits to businesses and more.

For an information pack on how to organise an event, tel: 020 7019 4937;


To tie in with National Science Week and Einstein Year, the BA is inviting poets in five age groups (four-seven, eight-11, 12-15, 16-18, adults) to submit poems on the themes of time, space and energy online by February 11.

More than 400 schools ranging from 100-pupil strong Talgarth primary school in Powys to Bristol's 1,000-strong John Cabot city technology college have entered proposals for the Rolls-Royce Science Prize. Educational establishments in the UK and Republic of Ireland teaching pupils aged three to 19 have until February 25 to make submissions for this new annual awards scheme with a two-year rolling programme. Designed to help reverse the decline in numbers of students taking up science subjects, it requires small teams of adults, led by a practising teacher, to devise a science teaching proposal for their school or college. This may form part of an existing school improvement plan. In the programme's second year, short-listed teams will be awarded grants plus a specialist mentor's support to implement their proposals over two terms. The winning team will receive pound;15,000 to invest in science education while pound;10,000 will go to the runners-up. Proposals so far include introducing "creatively taught single science GCSE" to some Years 8 and 9 students and an ICT and robotics project. Lessons learned from all submissions will be shared online., or tel: 0800 028 0759

Fancy yourself as the next David Attenborough, Magnus Pyke or Susan Greenfield? FameLab, the science world's equivalent of Pop Idol, invites anyone aged 18 years upwards working in science to attend heats in Manchester, Bristol, Cardiff, Glasgow, London and Belfast in March and April. Their three-minute talks on a science topic for a non-scientific audience will be judged on ability to communicate and entertain and the best will make a further five-minute presentation. The winner receives broadcasting time on Channel 4, a UK tour of speaking events, and pound;2,000.; tel: 01242 775824

Small teams of young meteorologists aged 15 to 16 across Europe are invited to research and answer a series of multiple choice questions online by March 31. The competition is run by EUMETSAT, an intergovernmental organisation that establishes and maintains operational meteorological satellites for 18 European states, to celebrate the launch of its Meteosat 9 weather satellite. Prizes include a trip to the launch celebrations in Germany.

Teachers have until February 14 to apply to take part in a fully-funded UK field research project lasting two to six days. The Earthwatch Environmental Awards also include a pound;125 community project grant towards a local conservation or environmental education project involving children.

Tel: 01865 318826; email:

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