Activities and events

The University of Bristol is committed to the principles of widening participation and community engagement. We work in partnership with a variety of organisations and institutions, such as the Sutton Trust and IntoUniversity, with the aim to inspire young people to raise their aspirations and increase their awareness of higher education.

The UK Student Recruitment Team work with departments across the University to deliver a variety of centralised outreach activities for schools and colleges, such as the Access to Bristol Scheme and our range of summer schools.

Many departments also offer comprehensive schools and colleges liaison activity programmes. The departments listed to the right have a dedicated website for schools and colleges. For more information please contact our UK Student Recruitment Manager, Doug Jennings.

Upcoming Events

Synthetic Biology Art Exhibition and Workshops

SynBioExpo: Genome Engineering and Art Exhibition Workshop

Date: Tuesday 25 – Saturday 29 April 2017. 
Workshop to be hosted at exhibition space (SPACE, 6 West Street, Old Market, BS2 0BH) in the same week.

University of Bristol researchers in collaboration with Bristol-based creatives have developed an exhibition of artwork exploring genome engineering and synthetic biology. Alongside this exhibition, they have developed a 2 hour long free workshop to engage students in bioethical discussions surrounding genome engineering and its applications. The workshop will also include time to explore the exhibition and talk to researchers about current projects which use genome engineering techniques. The workshop is targeted at sixth form students, with a maximum group size of 30 students.

For further details please contact Grace Mullally on


Date: Saturday 3 June – 10:30am-4:30pm
Location: At-Bristol

Digimakers provides students with the opportunity to take part in a number of digital workshops. Participants can sample activities in a range of different areas from electronics to computing, the day will consist of a series of hands on workshops.

To find out further information, please visit our website.

Schools Conferences

Y12 Schools Conferences will take place in the week Monday 26 June – Friday 30 June 2017.

Schools are welcome to visit the University with up to an entire Y12 cohort for advice on UCAS applications and personal statements, a tour of the campus with current undergraduate ambassadors

Your students will also have the opportunity to attend a taster academic session from a choice of disciplines in the afternoon.

For further information please contact: to book your place on the day.

Engineering work experience

Excellent opportunity for students interested in the creative applications of Science and Mathematics. In particular we are looking to attract applications from female students.

We have an exciting week planned, giving you an insight into the world class research undertaken in the departments of Computer Science, Electrical and Electronic Engineering and Engineering Mathematics.

The week will include, lab visits, making robots, inspiring  seminars  and experiments, including hands-on workshops. More information is available on the Faculty of Engineering's web page.

Bristol Big Bang Fair

Date: Thursday 06 July – Friday 07 July
Location: Bristol Trinity Centre

Big Bang Bristol is a two day science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) extravaganza at the Trinity Centre in Bristol. Students will be able to get hands on with STEM while exploring cutting edge research.

Within the event, there will be a Research Zone, which will allow students to understand exciting developments within the subjects and an Enterprise Zone, where they will be able to interact with companies and find out more about STEM careers.

For more information and to book please email:

Sutton Trust Summer School

Date: Sunday 09 July – Friday 14 July
Location: Clifton Campus

The Sutton Trust Summer School will be running at the University in 2017.

This summer school provides Y12 students with the opportunity to spend a week at the University, attending a range of lectures in their chosen academic discipline.

The students will also have the opportunity to sample life at the University, living in halls of residence and being able to attend a wide variety of evening activities designed to replicate student life.

For further information about the summer school programme, please visit our website.

Headstart Summer School

Date: Monday 10 July – Friday 14 July 2017
Location: Queens Building and Merchant Ventures Building

The Headstart Summer School runs every year at the University in July, to provide students in year 12 with further information about studying engineering at university.

Students have the opportunity to take part in a number of taster lectures designed to inform them about the course and have the chance to solve engineering challenges in that subject area.

They also have a packed social calendar, created in order to provide an overview of life at University.

The summer school is run in collaboration with the Engineering Development Trust, for further information about the summer school please visit the Headstart website.

Ada the Show- A theatre production about Ada Lovelace

Date: Monday 16 October 2017
Location: The Lantern, Colston Hall

As part of the BBC’s Digital Bristol week celebrations, the University of Bristol are inviting students from years 7 & 8 to experience an interactive theatre production about Mathematician Ada Lovelace. 

Ada Lovelace wrote the world’s first complex algorithm in 1843 and then was written out of history. Ada.Ada.Ada, is a dynamic, educational theatre piece which tells the story of Lovelace using an LED dress which she operates – live on stage – using her wearable tech satin glove. Ada.Ada.Ada exists to help people, especially girls and women, engage with technology and stem as a career.

If you are interested in finding out more information please email:


Date: Saturday 11 November 2017, Saturday 17 February & Saturday 9 June 2018

An exciting series of free technology meets art events, aimed at children aged 9-16, parents and educators. These events aim to inspire the next generation of technical innovators and engineers by providing an introduction to 'making' in the digital word. From programming software to hacking hardware, we want to show you more ways to get creative with technology. The day consists of a series of hands-on-workshops, a show-and-tell section, and a drop-in centre for those who need help. The largest activity of its kind in the south-west region.

Bristol ChemLabS

Bristol ChemLabS puts on a very large range of Chemistry related outreach activities throughout the year, ranging from practical workshops and lecture demonstrations for school groups through to residential chemistry camps for individuals, and can take place in schools or at the University.

Activities are provided for a range of age groups from primary school to post 16 students.

For more information please contact or visit their ChemLabS website.

Biology Taster Session

Location: Life Sciences Building

The brand new Life Sciences Building is hosting a Biology Taster Day for groups of students in Year 7 to Year 9, who are attending state schools in the local area.

They are currently running a variety of workshops including sessions in analysing local river samples, investigating mammalian skulls and a range of other sessions that will allow students to explore the subject area.

Further information about the day can be found via the School of Biological Sciences website.

School talks

The University of Bristol is very happy to provide talks to students, staff and parents in sixth forms and colleges in our local area. 

Talks can cover a wide range of topics, from ‘The UCAS Process’ and ‘How to Write a Personal Statement’ through to ‘Student Life’ and ‘Student Finance’. 

We are always happy to tailor our talks to your needs where possible.  If you would like further information or to book a talk, please contact

Physics outreach

Our School of Physics can provide a broad variety of outreach activities, ranging from practical workshops in our teaching labs through to speakers in your school or college. 

There is normally a charge for these activities but there may be some funding available to work with your school. 

Please check our website for further information, or contact us on


Speakezee enables teachers to invite local academic experts to come and give talks about their research to pupils. It was highlighted in the recent Guardian article about the problems of common educational “neuromyths” where neuroscientists visited schools to explain why neuromyths (e.g. “learning styles”) did not work. Ideally audiences should be at least 40 in size and talks are best suited for 15+ years. Speakers are free for state schools. Speakezee also offers a curated service for independent schools for which there is a charge to support the platform and target specific topics.

Smart Cities Challenge - Year 9

How cities work is changing rapidly. Developments in software, hardware and telecom networks are enabling more interaction between people and places. In the future citizens will have more ability to interact, work and play with their city. Using data sensors, smart city technologies we will be able to respond in real-time to everyday events including congestion, waste management, entertainment events, e-democracy, energy supply and more. Bristol is working towards being the world’s first open programmable city.  During the day participants will work in small teams to create the Smart City of the future.

If you would like to register your interest in this event please email:

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