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01225 384041

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Student tutor Rebecca Lloyd at science club
Student tutor Rebecca Lloyd at science club

Press Release - 07 June 2007

Exploding cans and foam monsters help pupils to think of taking science at university

Exploding cans, foam monsters and disposable nappies have played an important role in the future of pupils at Bath secondary schools.

The pupils, at St Mark’s and Oldfield schools, have been taking part in a tutoring scheme organised by the University of Bath to help them with their studies and inspire them to think about higher education.

Twenty-five students worked at the schools for fourteen weeks alongside teachers, with small groups of pupils, or one-to-one.

“The schools have told us that the students have been a real asset,” said Liz Johnson, Aimhigher and outreach events coordinator at the University of Bath.

“They have helped individual school students to make improvements in their work and overcome problems. They’ve also been able to share their learning experiences and given the school students the awareness and confidence to think about going on to university.”

Rebecca Lloyd, a second-year psychology undergraduate who ran a science club for Year 7 pupils at St Mark’s School, described the experience as rewarding.

“It’s been fantastic helping these children to enjoy and explore science,” said Ms Lloyd.

“We’ve exploded Pringles cans, made foam monsters, and played with custard, bubbles, disappearing worms, crystal gardens, disposable nappies, gas cannons, balloons and many other exciting practicals!

“I also helped older students with practicals and coursework which was valuable to them as I am so much closer to their age group than their teachers.”

The tutoring scheme is part of the national Aimhigher programme designed to widen participation in higher education by raising the awareness, aspirations and attainment of young people from under-represented groups.

Aimhigher is run by the Higher Education Funding Council for England with support from the Department for Education and Skills.

Undergraduates employed by the tutoring scheme attend a training programme to prepare them for the role and they receive ongoing support to enable them to provide high quality tutoring to the young people they work with.

The University of Bath runs a series of Aimhigher events to widen participation in higher education, including tutoring schemes, open days and summer schools for school students in the south-west region.

Students also tutored at after-school literacy and numeracy workshops run by the Bath Rugby Education Centre, and at schools and colleges in Wiltshire.

For more information about the tutoring scheme please email Liz Johnson at the University of Bath at or call 01225 384041.

The University of Bath is one of the UK's leading universities, with an international reputation for quality research and teaching. View a full list of the University's press releases: