Take on the Cambridge Chemistry Challenge
Students in the UK and around the world this year put their chemistry skills to the test in a new competition supported by the University of Cambridge Department of Chemistry, The Rushton Bequest from St Catharine’s College, University of Cambridge International Examinations and OCR (Oxford Cambridge and RSA Examinations).
The Cambridge Chemistry Challenge, launched in January 2011, was the brainchild of Dr Peter Wothers who is a chemist at the University of Cambridge. It is a monthly online competition which is open to anyone, any age from anywhere in the world. Five ‘Google-proof’ questions issued on the first of each month until June are set by an experienced team of teachers and university chemists. They are designed to push boundaries, stretch students’ knowledge and encourage them to think about science and use the internet to find scientific data. The competition has proved extremely popular, with teachers and students from more than 50 countries around the world entering online. At the end of the online competition in June the Cambridge Chemistry Challenge team set a written exam for Year 12 students at schools in the UK. This was taken by more than 3000 students in 250 schools across the country. The top performing students attended a residential camp at the university’s Chemistry Department. They were presented with their ‘Chemistry Challenge’ awards by Cambridge MP and research scientist Dr Julian Huppert at a ceremony in the Houses of Parliament on Thursday 25 November. Dr Peter Wothers said: “It is fantastic to see this competition strike a chord with so many students across the world. We set this up because we wanted to give students and teachers a new and fun way of approaching chemistry. In terms of the written paper for UK schools - it seemed important to target students at Year 12 because this is when they are developing subject interests and considering their university options.
“At school students are taught the facts but here they have to be creative, apply knowledge of other subjects and think outside the box – these are exactly the kind of skills which are needed for university. It is therefore useful for students wanting to go on to study chemistry at undergraduate level because it gives them that competitive edge!”
Ann Puntis, Chief Executive of University of Cambridge International Examinations said: “I’m delighted that this competition has proved to be so successful - engaging and inspiring thousands of students around the world. These are our young chemists of the future. Through participating in the Challenge they demonstrate an interest in chemistry which goes beyond the classroom, preparing them for success at university and beyond.” If you would like to find out more visit www.c3l6.org
Student receives Award for Excellence in Digital Marketing
Econsultancy has announced the recipient of its new Excellence in Digital Marketing award, named in memory of one of the UK’s foremost digital marketing trainers, speakers and practitioners, David Hughes. Jenny Thaw, who graduated from Manchester Metropolitan University in July with a BA in Retail Marketing Management, was awarded the newly launched prize after gaining top marks in the dissertation element of her degree.
David was an integral part of
Econsultancy’s training team, working with the organisation from the training division’s launch in 2005 and delivering some of the most popular courses, including Email Marketing and the Digital Marketing Fast Track. He also regularly contributed to Econsultancy events and research. The focus of the award is to provide the successful student with plenty of visibility in the industry. Jenny will contribute to the Econsultancy blog regarding her experiences of digital education through university and her subsequent search for work. She will also be featured on the soon to be launched careers section of the site and Econsultancy’s CEO, Ashley Friedlein, will be offering career mentoring over the coming six months. David Edmundson-Bird, who acted as Jenny’s dissertation supervisor in her final year at Manchester Metropolitan University Business School, said: “The award is a great way for undergraduates to gain recognition outside the educational system and the backing of Econsultancy and David’s name lends significant weight to their achievements. Jenny is an extremely deserving graduate with great prospects and our hope is that the award will continue to gain credibility as a mark of excellence in digital marketing education.”
In the zone initiative launched
As the world focuses on the extraordinary feats of human performance that will take place in London next summer, the Wellcome Trust is leading a London 2012-inspired UK- wide initiative to engage the public with the science of how their own body works during exercise, movement and rest.
With free experiment kits for every UK school and an interactive touring exhibition for the whole family, there will be an opportunity for everyone to explore what happens in our bodies and minds when we take part in sport, exercise or everyday movement.
The Wellcome Trust’s In the Zone initiative was formally launched by five-time Olympic Gold medallist Sir Steve Redgrave CBE at the Association for Science Education conference in Liverpool on 6 January. Sir Steve took take to the stage with medic and physiology expert Professor Hugh Montgomery and BBC Science Presenter Greg Foot for a live and interactive demonstration of some of the experiments from the free school kits.
Commenting on the launch, Sir Steve said: “It’s often said that there’s more to sport than winning medals, but there’s also more to winning medals than sport. Science played a huge role in my Olympic success, and understanding how my body works was as important on race day as any brutal training regime.
“With In the Zone, the Wellcome Trust are giving kids everywhere an opportunity to understand their own bodies and how to use them, which will hopefully see them inspired in both science and sport.”
From February 2012, the Wellcome Trust will deliver free kits with all the equipment and information needed to conduct hands- on experimental investigations into human physiology to every UK school and Further Education college. Does having long legs help you jump further? How does the cardiovascular system adapt during exercise and sport? These questions and more are explored in the curriculum-linked experiments developed in collaboration with Pearson Education.
In the Zone has been awarded the Inspire Mark from the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) and is a key strand of Get Set+, part of the official London 2012 education programme.
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