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Key information for schools booked for Meet the researcher sessions



Online platform and requirements

These sessions will be delivered via Zoom in a meeting format and using the website The following are advised broadband bandwidths (speed) for engaging at different resolutions. We nominally broadcast at HD video level.

Video Quality Download Speed Upload Speed
High Quality 0.8Mbps 0.8Mbps
HD Video (720p)
1.5Mbps 1.5Mbps
Full HD Video (1080p) 2.5Mbps 3.0Mbps

When in the session you will be able to keep your camera on so that the researchers can see you, but your sound will be automatically switched to mute. If you need to turn your camera off due to bandwidth issues, you will be able to do so.

Students will need to be able to access to submit questions to the researchers. Please ensure they have access to an internet enabled device during the session.

Logistics - actions for lead teachers before the day of your session.

All teachers should ensure they have undertaken the following at least one week before attending the online Schools programme:

  • Check that you have Zoom installed, and that you have reasonable internet bandwidth (see above).
  • Read the key information document for the session you are going to attend, downloadable at the end of this page.
  • Read the Royal Society acceptable use policy.
  • Ensure you have received an automated email from Eventbrite with the Zoom link for the session(s) you have booked into (these will come one week before event).
  • Please note that Zoom links should not be shared with other colleagues, only the lead teacher for the class attending. Admittance to the workshop sessions will be based on the registration list downloaded from Eventbrite. Each class teacher must register their own class to receive the link.
  • Please ensure your Zoom name (the name of your Zoom account that appears in a small box at the bottom of your screen) is the name of your school or the lead teacher as given on your booking. You will be able to check this on your e-ticket from Eventbrite. If we cannot identify your school and see it is one that has registered, we will not be able to allow you access to the workshop.
  • Please ensure students have access to an internet enabled device to enable them to submit questions to the researchers via Students will not be able to communicate directly via this site and all questions submitted will be moderated by Royal Society staff. Details of how to log in will also be provided in advance via email.
  • Ensure you have spoken to your students so that their expectations have been managed in terms of the session and their safety.
  • The chat function on Zoom will not be available during the event. Students and teachers will be able to submit their questions to the researchers using as mentioned above. 

Risk assessments

Risk assessments for each session are the responsibility of the teacher booking the session. Using the information about the sessions on this page you should safely be able to assess any risks to your students. If you require any further information to carry out your risk assessment, please do let us know via email by Thursday 1 July at the latest.

Specific information about the sessions

Suitable age range: 16 - 18yrs (A-level and Year 11 equivalent) 
Curriculum topics: various research topics (see table below), careers, skills.

Planning and preparation

In advance of the session, teachers are encouraged to get the students thinking about what questions they would like to ask the researchers about their work, careers and skills used, ready to type them into for the session they attend. This will help ensure the questions important to students are covered on the day. The links will be accessible a little in advance of the session to help support students entering their questions in time.

Session details

During each Meet the researcher session, researchers from three - four of the groups answering the big questions being explored during Summer Science will attend to speak to schools. The big questions being represented at each session are listed below, along with the main subject areas covered.

As all research is multi-disciplinary, the researcher attending on behalf of the research group may have a slightly different background and specialism. Each session has a mix of subjects represented, so a great opportunity for students to find out more about some of the research topics and also a range of careers and science skills used.

Each session will have approximately 15 minutes brief introduction to the researcher groups present at the start, and 30 minutes dedicated to answering questions the students have submitted via

Thursday 9am session
Big Question
Main subject area
Will we breathe fresh air again?   Chemistry
What happens when we have too much water?   Physics
Can nature help us to tackle the climate emergency?  Biology

Thursday 10am session
Big Question

Main subject area
Why are humans smelly? 
Biology / Chemistry
What makes up a tumour?
How has Hubble transformed our view of the Universe?
Where do galaxies come from? Physics 

Thursday 11am session
Big Question
Main subject area
How can stem cells heal the human body? 
How can we mine our sustainable future?
How do we track and trace carbon from Space?


Friday 9am session
Big Question Main subject area
What did the last day of the dinosaurs look like?   Biology / Materials
Could you tell a landmine from a bottle top?  Physics
Would you trust a robot surgeon?  Engineering / Biology

Friday 10am session
Big Question Main subject area
Would planes be better if they were more like birds?  Engineering / Biology
How can microbes turn rubbish into riches?  Biology
Has there ever been life on Mars?  Physics

Friday 11am session
Big Question Main subject area
Would you connect your brain to the internet?  Engineering / Biology
Can we print your perfect pill?  Biology / Chemistry
What’s a bee’s favourite flower? Biology

Emergency information which may affect sessions 

In case of any incidents that may affect the Summer Science Schools programme taking place, please check our Twitter page in advance of your workshop: @RoyalSociety. An email will be sent to all booked groups if the virtual event needs to be cancelled, but this may not be possible at short notice. 

About the Schools programme and Summer Science

Specific space for schools: the Schools programme will take place via Zoom, and is not part of the main public programme so the general public will not be able to access the schools programme activities. You must ensure that you do not share the Eventbrite link for your session with individual students or parents for them to use. Only one login from each booking will be permitted.

After you have taken part: We will send the booking contact a link to an online survey post event to help us ensure the Summer Science Schools programme continues to be a high quality event for school groups, especially in the new online format used this year. Please take a few moments to complete your evaluation form as we really value all feedback from teachers.

Summer Science: there is a public programme for Summer Science that teachers may be personally interesting in engaging with to help keep abreast of the latest advances in STEM research to bring into their lessons. With a packed programme of inspiring talks, fascinating interactive workshops, fun science from home activities and exciting digital content, there is something for all ages.

A summary of the information above can be downloaded via this Key information document: Key information_Meet the researchers_FINAL

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