The Association for Science Education
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  5. ASE Annual Conference 2016 - University of Birmingham

Key Speakers

Our key speaker line-up. More to be announced.

Professor Steve Jones - "Is man just another animal? Evolution and us"

Emeritus Professor of Human Genetics, University College London

Keynote: Saturday 9 January 2016

Outside of the research community where he is recognised as one of the world's experts on the genetics of snails, Steve Jones is probably best known as a regular broadcaster and writer of popular books on scientific issues. He gave the 1991 Reith Lecture on “The Language of the Genes“, has written and presented a Radio 3 series on science and the arts, “Blue Skies”, and a TV series on human genetics, “In the Blood”. He also appears on other radio and TV programmes, such as Today, Question Time, Late Review and Newsnight , and writes a regular column in The Daily Telegraph, “View from the Lab“.

Neil Monteiro

Science demonstrator

Keynote: Date to be confirmed 

Neil studied Physics at Imperial College London before going on to deliver talks and workshops in the Reach Out Lab as part of the College's outreach programme. He gives interactive talks and demonstration lectures about all kinds of science and maths but specialises in using a mix of physics, psychology and illusions to illustrate the weirder side of science. His shows combine insights into the real knowledge of science and psychology with incredible demonstrations of scientific thinking. He is also a big campaigner in promoting scientific subjects for the general public and for schools giving talks and workshops for all kinds of audiences. 

Claire Oldham

Director of Discovery, Twycross Zoo

Keynote: Saturday 9 January 2016

Twycross Zoo was founded in 1963 by pet shop owners. The Zoo is now renowned as a World Primate Centre and has a wide variety of monkeys and apes including the UK’s only group of bonobos. Twycross Zoo’s Education Department offers a variety of discovery opportunities. In 2013, Twycross Zoo won BIAZA’s Best Sustainable Zoo and Best Education Project awards, and were commended in the Significant Advance in Husbandry and Welfare, Significant Advances in Zoo and Wildlife Medicine, and Best Education Project categories.

Lord Baker - "Filling the Skills Gap"

Chairman of the Edge Foundation and Chairman of the Baker Dearing Educational Trust

Keynote: Thursday 7th January 2016

The Rt Hon Lord Baker of Dorking CH was a Conservative Member of Parliament from 1968 to 1997. He held a number of senior Government positions including Secretary of State for Education and Science, during which he introduced the first national curriculum, tests, City Technology Colleges and Grant-Maintained Schools. He became a member of the House of Lords in 1997. Through the Baker Dearing Educational Trust, Lord Baker is spearheading the initiative for University Technical Colleges – 30 are already open with 26 opening between 2015-2016.  Lord Baker is Chairman of Edge Foundation, an educational charity championing technical, practical and vocational learning, and supporting the newly launched Career Colleges. Lord Baker has written several books including 14-18 A New Vision for Secondary Education, published in 2013.

Professor Justin Dillon

Professor of Science and Environmental Education & Head of School, Graduate School of Education, University of Bristol

Keynote: Saturday 9 January 2016

After taking a degree in chemistry from Birmingham University, Justin trained as a teacher at Chelsea College and went on to teach in six secondary schools in London. His research originally focused on teaching and learning about chemistry in England and Spain. Over the past 15 years he has focused more on science learning outside the classroom particularly in museums, science centres and botanic gardens in the UK, Europe and elsewhere.

Alessio Bernardelli

Founder, CollaboratEd

Keynote: Friday 8 January 2016

Born in Italy, Alessio migrated to Wales when he was 23.  He was a Head of Physics for 5 years and taught for 8 years in comprehensive schools. He worked at the TES as the Science Subject Lead, creating, collating and sharing science resources. He is an Institute of Physics Network Coordinator and an independent consultant focused on combining education and technology. His project C.S.I. (Creative Science Investigations) won an award at the Microsoft Worldwide Innovative Teachers Forum 2007 (Helsinki) and his “EM Spectrum TV Show” won the Guardian Classroom Innovation award in 2011. He is the founder of CollaboratEd which works with teachers to help them use technology to enhance learning. 

David Perks

Founder and Principal, East London Science School

Keynote: Date to be confirmed 

Before founding the East London Science School, which opened in 2013, David Perks taught physics for over twenty-five years in state schools. He is a passionate defender of academic science education and was the author of the main essay in What is science education for? (2006). David writes more broadly on education and the relationship between science and society. He originated the Institute of Ideas and Pfizer Debating Matters sixth form debating competition and is co-founder of The Physics Factory a national initiative to revitalise physics education in state schools which launched in September 2008.

"Chemical Magic" - Ray and Rosemary Plevey

Keynote: Date to be confirmed 

Dr Ray and Rosemary Plevey take to the stage with reactions and principles which might feature in your lessons. A visual presentation, and a kaleidoscope of chemical reactions, all presented in a light-hearted manner. A melange of observations, sometimes old, maybe something blue (a quick flash perhaps) etc pass before the eyes. Results predictable or unexpected create an atmosphere of magic to the uninitiated but to those in the know - it’s just chemistry, a collection of elements which compounded together make us and our world.