Residential Astrobiology CPD

ABOUT THE ACADEMY

“Astrobiology is a fantastic way to bring excitement and relevance to students’ foundational learning in physical, life, and earth/space sciences.  This workshop gave me insight into both ongoing research, as well as ideas I can use in my classroom immediately.” Teacher attendee, Astrobiology Academy

 

Residential Astrobiology Course

The residential two and a half day CPD event is designed to give teachers and other professionals with an interest in astrobiology the opportunity to learn at the interface of some of the most exciting cutting edge questions in science today such as: How did life originate on the Earth? Is there life elsewhere? The initiative focuses on giving teachers an insight into astrobiology and the development of curriculum-relevant lesson plans.

“Informative, educational and eye opening. A great concept and perfect interdisciplinary learning project.” Teacher attendee, Astrobiology Academy

What will I learn at the Academy?

Astrobiology is an interdisciplinary field that engages with diverse subjects from astronomy and astrophysics to biology, chemistry and the geosciences. The science of astrobiology seeks to understand and ultimately answer some of the most fundamental questions in science, such as how life originated and whether the Earth is the only planet with life.

The Astrobiology Academy empowers teachers to bring the excitement of science to their students in a multi-disciplined science field which is a central focus of current space missions and frequently in the media.

At the academy, attendees learn about how planets form; how life adapts to extreme environments on the Earth such as deep sea hydrothermal vents and cold Antarctic environments; whether life exists on other planets; the latest advances in the exploration of Mars and the possibility of human bases on other planets and moons.

The Academy provides an ideal framework to accomplish several objectives in secondary education:

  • Support teachers in using Astrobiology to create classes, workshops and lesson plans to explore a wide range of scientific questions.
  • Develop new teaching materials such as lesson plans and activities that are then made available across the UK to secondary schools.
  • Exposure to researchers and the excitement of active scientific research.
  • Teach new scientific knowledge in cutting edge areas and in interdisciplinary fields.

Why Now?

“Fantastic opportunity to bring cutting edge research into the classroom to support the curriculum. Great, fun lesson plans to engage students in STEM.” Teacher attendee, Astrobiology Academy

With new discoveries of Earth-like planets orbiting distant stars and the landing of remarkable instruments such as NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover, astrobiology is an area of vibrant activity that gives school pupils the opportunity to engage in a rapidly changing field of great public interest.

“A great way to think about teaching biology from a different angle.” Teacher attendee, Astrobiology Academy

Where and When

The residential CPD initiative is hosted by the UK Centre for Astrobiology at the University of Edinburgh between academic term times. You can register your interest in the 2017 academy through the registration page. We will announce on the website when the academy is fully subscribed. For our residential two and a half-day course, participants come to Edinburgh and are provided with catered accommodation for the duration of the course which is all provided at no charge thanks to the generous support of our sponsors.  Residential catered places are limited to 15, with a further 10 places for those able to commute in to Edinburgh each day. For our one day astrobiology CPD events, these are held at locations in the UK. The 2017 three day CPD will be held from July 10th to the 12th (Monday morning to Wednesday lunch).

“A phenomenally enriching experience with fantastic resources and opportunities.” Teacher attendee, Astrobiology Academy

How Many Participants and at What Level?

The initiative has places for anyone with a science and technology background who has a good writing ability and is keen to be involved in creating and editing lesson plans for secondary schools. Teachers from upper secondary school, who are enthusiastic and self-motivated with interests in the fields of chemistry, biology, physics, geology, astronomy or engineering are particularly welcome, but the academy is not limited to teachers. Teachers from remote schools or smaller schools with limited resources will be preferentially selected to attend.

Costs

The Academy runs with the generous support of a number of sponsors and therefore selected applicants attend for free (all you need is to meet your transport costs) and attendance at the academy fulfills a year’s worth of CPD requirements for teachers.

Structure

“Interesting course with lots of opportunities to ask questions.” Teacher attendee, Astrobiology Academy

  • Lectures you will learn about cutting-edge astrobiology research embedded within basic teaching on principles in physics, chemistry, biology, geology and astronomy. Regardless of science specialty, teachers should find the material approachable and relevant with the opportunity to dive deeper into any topic.
  • Lesson Plan Development working together in groups you will formulate new lesson plans and update existing ones inspired by the material you have just been presented with.

Interested in applying?  See the Registration Page to register your interest.

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