United Kingdom, Cambridge

Science Summer Programme

when 7 July 2019 - 3 August 2019
language English
duration 4 weeks

The University is renowned for scientific achievement and innovation. We draw on the expertise of senior Cambridge academics to offer courses in a broad variety of scientific fields. This year subjects include astronomy, chemistry, climate change, cryptography, earth science, engineering, evolution, genetics, microbiology, nanobiotechnology, neurobiology, nutrition, physiology, plant science, psychology, quantum mechanics and zoology.

The academic programme
• Two courses per week
• Series of plenary lectures: Problems and Solutions
• Evening talks
• Contact hours: up to 51 hours per term

Programme description
Taught by leading Cambridge academics, courses can be combined to give up to four weeks of study. You may choose a particular track by selecting courses in related subjects, but an interdisciplinary approach is also encouraged. Some courses are taught in the relevant University Department. Many have an integral practical session, or visit exclusive to that course.

"The Science Programme brings you face-to-face with world-leading researchers pushing the boundaries of scientific excellence."
Dr Tom Monie, Joint Programme Director, Science Summer Programme

You choose one course per week, each has five sessions. The maximum class size is 25 participants. You can write one essay per course for evaluation.

Courses marked * require a knowledge of differential calculus, some integral calculus and fluency in high school level algebra and geometry.

TERM I (7 – 20 July)

Week 1:
11.15am – 12.45pm
Pa1 - It's all in the genes: introduction
Pa2 - An introduction to social psychology
Pa3 - Building blocks of astronomy
Pa4 - Patterns and predictions: understanding the Periodic Table
Pa5 - Solar energy science and technology

2.00pm – 3.30pm
Qa1 - Exciting cells: an introduction to neurobiology
Qa2 - Memory: psychological and neurobiological perspectives
Qa3 - Understanding the Universe: a multi-wavelength approach
Qa4 - How does your immune system work?
Qa5 - The future of electronics

Week 2:
11.15am – 12.45pm
Pb1 - It's all in the genes: intermediate
Pb2 - Autism: a modern epidemic?
Pb3 - Curious physics: rotational mechanics and special relativity *
Pb4 - An introduction to common biochemical assay techniques
Pb5 - Antarctica: ocean, ice, animals and climate change

2.00pm – 3.30pm
Qb1 - Restless creatures
Qb2 - Nutrition Science: from core concepts to health applications
Qb3 - Curious physics: waves and quantum mechanics *
Qb4 - Small worlds: an introduction to microbiology
Qb5 - Understanding life: finding clues in the fossil record

TERM II (21 July – 3 August)

Week 1:
11.15am – 12.45pm
Pc1 - The medicinal properties of plants
Pc2 - How nanobiotechnology is revolutionising healthcare
Pc3 - The importance of conservation science
Pc4 - From micro to macro: understanding our planet

2.00pm – 3.30pm
Qc1 - Cryptography: unlocking the future
Qc2 - Allergens and other dangers
Qc3 - Sustainability: creating a more sustainable world
Qc4 - From micro to macro: understanding our planet

Week 2:
11.15am – 12.45pm
Pd1 - Understanding cancer
Pd2 - Palaeopathology: the study of ancient health and diseases
Pd3 - Unveiling the Universe
Pd4 - Adhesive bonding and composite materials: engineering advanced materials

2.00pm – 3.30pm
Qd1 - An introduction to animal behaviour
Qd2 - Human evolution
Qd3 - Unveiling the Universe
Qd4 - Diffraction and crystallography: seeing materials at the atomic level

Plenary lectures
Lectures from leading Cambridge scientists will explore this theme, as well as providing introductions to the afternoon practical sessions and visits.

Evening talks
Eminent speakers will present a variety of general interest talks. These are shared with students on our other programmes.

Course leader

Dr Tom Monie

Target group

It is recommended that you have studied science to at least high school level. Those with a strong interest, but with little formal science training, are very welcome, but should note the requirements of some courses. Required and/or supplementary reading should also be undertaken before you arrive in Cambridge.

Credits info

The University of Cambridge does not use a credit system for the awarding of its internal degrees, and cannot award credit directly for its International Summer Programmes. Students wishing to obtain credit as a result of our evaluation should consult their own institutions in advance about the acceptability of the Summer Programme evaluation for credit purposes.

Fee info

GBP 0: See official website