Australian Institute of Physics
South Australian Branch
Notice of a
at7:30 pm on Monday 28th May 2007
in the Kerr Grant lecture theatre in the Physics building
at the University of Adelaide
Note. Security restrictions require that entry to the building is supervised.
It is therefore essential that attendees arrive before 7:30pm.
Entry will not be possible after this time.
"An answer to the dwindling number of science graduates? Get more young people involved in science!" by
School of Mathematical and Physical Sciences
University of Newcastle
byDr Terry Burns
Team LeaderScience and Engineering Challenge/SMART program
Abstract: At a time when many Universities seem to be scrambling to attract science and engineering students, the University of Newcastle is cooperating with other tertiary institutions, professional organizations and the community to enlarge the pool of potential students.
For over two decades the University of Newcastle, NSW has been involved with ‘promoting’ science, technology and engineering in the local community. This work has distilled into two successful programs: SMART, and The Science and Engineering Challenge.
Dr Terry Burns, a professional Science Communicator from the University of Newcastle, will introduce these two award-winning programs, as well as the larger field of Science Communication.
Biography: If pressed for a job title Terry Burns would have to describe himself as a professional science communicator. So what does this science communicator do?
Terry is the founding director of the University of Newcastle’s SMART program. SMART utilizes a team of university students to conduct science shows, activities and teacher training sessions in schools and other public venues around NSW. He currently travels Australia as Team Leader of the award-winning ‘Science and Engineering Challenge’, an itinerant workshop-style Science and Engineering competition for high school students.
In 2001 he was part of the University of Newcastle team that was a finalist in the Australian Eureka Awards for the Promotion of Science. In 2002 Terry received the UK Institute of Physics, Public Awareness of Physics Award “… for his outstanding contribution to physics communication through the SMART program and particularly for his work in training undergraduates in science communication and developing science shows.” The Science and Engineering Challenge (of which Terry is a part) was thrust into the public spotlight when, in 2003, it was awarded Engineers Australia’s prestigious ‘Sir William Hudson Award’ for best engineering project in Australia.
Like many science communicators, Terry brings a range of skills to his work. He has trade and professional qualifications in engineering and in 2004 become the University of Newcastle’s first Doctor of Philosophy in Science Communication after a very practical research project focused on science shows.
Pictures from the lecture