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University-School Partnerships: On the impact on students of Summer Schools

Author(s): A.J. Shaw, T.G. Harrison, S.J. Croker, M. Medley, L. Sellou,

Journal: Acta Didactica Napocensia
ISSN 2065-1430

Volume: 3;
Issue: 4;
Start page: 35;
Date: 2010;
Original page

Keywords: Attitudes to science | Bristol ChemLabS | Chemistry summer schools | School Teacher

Chemistry summer schools for 17-18 year old school students in the UK were run byBristol ChemLabS, a Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning in Chemistry at theUniversity of Bristol. Students attending were all studying Chemistry at post-16 level (A level inthe UK) and experienced not only new practical techniques but also lectures on cutting-edgescience as well as interacting with postgraduate role models. The students completed pre and postsummer school questionnaires to ascertain the impact of the summer school on them. Paired t-testswere used to ascertain significant changes at the 2σ level. There was no significant differenceobserved for self-concepts in Chemistry and Mathematics. For creative self-concept there was asignificant increase (1σ) for females but not males and a significant increase in academic selfconceptfor the whole cohort. There was a high level of enjoyment of the summer school. Therewere a range of reasons for students attending the summer school and the benefits they producedand these are discussed. Interestingly, one of the main reasons for attending was to help studentsmake choices of subject to study at University; however, the summer school opened the students’eyes to more possibilities rather than narrow the choices open to them.
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