Engaging the public in astronomy and geophysics

Topic: Computing

Session Title: Engaging the public in astronomy and geophysics


There are now many schemes promoting astronomy and space science engagement and outreach in the UK, and a growing number of projects that engage school students and the general public in research. Astronomers and geophysicists are often asked to contribute to these schemes in a variety of different environments, but training on how to do these can vary immensely from one institution to another.

The driving idea of this session is to help astronomy researchers and educators to not only create really inspiring astronomical outreach activities, but ones which have a structure for evaluating the impact they have and reference specific research. We aim to showcase high quality outreach activities and share best-practices to the community.

We invite contributions from anyone in the sector working in this area. We would like to explain the differences between different types of engagement, and share some best practices on how to make your activities impactful for your audience, and meaningful for you and your institution. We also welcome sharing of resources to support your planning, delivery, and evaluation.

The session hopes to include a CPD session workshop incorporating a focus group and open discussion about what is really needed in terms of resources, training, information and best practices to achieve the requirements of each particular audience. We would like to invite suggestions for workshops and hands-on sessions to showcase new approaches to astronomy and geophysics education and outreach. We particularly welcome examples of working with people from low socioeconomic backgrounds, as this aligns with the current RAS Education and Outreach strategy.

Organiser(s): Sheila Kanani, Lucinda Offer, Andy Newsam, Robert Massey, Alex Brown, and members of the RAS Education and Outreach committee


Session 1: Wednesday 17th July, 09:00 – 11:00

Session 2: Wednesday 17th July, 15:00 – 17:00