27 November 2018

Young Queenslanders will showcase their passion for science at this year’s Wonder of Science State Conference, hosted at The University of Queensland.

Wonder of Science aims to promote STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education to students in years five to nine, opening students’ eyes to the potential of STEM careers.

UQ School of Earth and Environmental Sciences PhD graduate and Wonder of Science Program Officer Dr Kaylene Butler said the initiative helps school students undertake science and technology research projects which are aligned to the Australia Curriculum.

“Young Science Ambassadors – primarily PhD students and early career researchers from Queensland universities – visited participating schools, supporting school students to develop a group presentation about the research they were doing.

“The students then attended a regional student conference, where representative teams presented their research and critically analysed the projects of their peers.

“The winning regional teams were then invited to the Wonder of Science State Conference where champion teams will be chosen for each year level.”

Wonder of Science Director Robyn Bull said that students will travel from as far as Mount Isa, Cloncurry and Roma to compete.

“Wonder of Science promotes problem-solving skills, including critical, creative, collaborative and ethical thinking,” she said.

“Last year we saw amazing presentations from students, including a year nine team creating elephant’s toothpaste to measure changes in energy following chemical reactions.

“And year five teams designed plans for a base on Mars, while other students used experimental design to create the ideal snack for an Antarctic expedition.

“These are just a handful of examples where Wonder of Science is inspiring students to engage in rigorous, real-world STEM learning.

“These skills support students to develop the capabilities required to achieve and succeed in a rapidly advancing and changing world.”

The Wonder of Science State Conference will be held at UQ’s St Lucia campus on Friday 30 November at UQ’s Advanced Engineering Building.

Video content about the event can be found here.

Media: Kaylene Butler, kaylene.butler@uqconnect.edu.au, +61 400 445 175; Dominic Jarvis, dominic.jarvis@uq.edu.au, +61 413 334 924.