Physics Outreach

Activities for school students and teachers, the general public, our alumni and friends.

  MUPPETS laser show for the community at Mildura
MUPPETS laser show for the community at Mildura

About us

Programs run by the Schools include:

  • in-school and on-campus demonstration lectures for primary and secondary schools (MUPPETS, WARP)
  • enrichment studies for secondary school students (Physics VCE Lectures)
  • resources for science teachers
  • Telescopes in Schools run by the Astrophysics Group in partnership with the ARC Centre of Excellence for All-Sky Astrophysics, Quantum Victoria and Melbourne Planetarium
  • Work Experience program for Year 10 students.

Programs run by the University include:

  • University of Melbourne Extension Program (UMEP) in which secondary students may take 1st year university level Physics subjects. More details on the UMEP program.
  • Teachers

    Due to imposed restrictions related to COVID-19, all events have been postponed until further notice.

    Each year the School hosts an in-service day for secondary science/physics teachers. It is designed to keep them aware of developments in physics research and to assist them in keeping them informed regarding the current VCE physics syllabus. Spaces are normally limited so it is best to register as soon as possible. Date of in-service is TBC.

    Laby VCE Physics Teachers' Grant

    The Laby Foundation is offering grants with the aim of building capacity in physics teaching across Victoria, specifically targeting (but not solely limited to) disadvantaged and rural schools. The grants are available to help fund teachers to attend the Focus on Physics In-Service event.

    We invite applications from interested schools/teachers. Funding up to $500 per school is available, depending on circumstances. Funds are to cover the registration fee and CRT cost. The number of grants is limited and will be assessed in the order they are received.

    Provide your case for sponsorship (a substantiated statement) based on the following selection priorities:

    • Geographical and/or socio-economic disadvantage
    • Access to high-quality professional learning in order to strengthen capacity in teaching physics
    • Low uptake of science subjects at VCE level, particularly physics, and/or low science profile in the school
    • Other disadvantage identified by the applicant.

    Complete and submit the online application form, which includes your response to the selection priorities. Your statement addressing one or more of the selection priorities must be concise, totalling no more than 500 words. We are looking for key factors supporting your application, with brief substantiation (e.g. school data, the web address to evidence, a clear statement of fact). A letter advising of the outcome of the grant will be sent to applicants. Successful applicants will be advised on how to arrange payment of funding (CRT and/or travel costs only) which will be paid after the event.

  • Work Experience

    Our work experience program gives Year 10 students the opportunity to experience a week at the university from the perspective of both a research student and an academic. With three streams to choose from (Astrophysics, Particle Physics and Nanoscale Imaging), there is a specialism to suit any student's interest in physics. Students will undertake a wide variety of fun and educational activities and projects throughout the week that will both engage and inspire.

    Applications for this popular program are currently closed. Any further enquiries can be directed to Clare Kenyon clare.kenyon@unimelb.edu.au. Please note that due to staffing and timing constraints, we are unable to offer any work experience outside the official program dates.

  • VCE Lectures

    NOTICE:  Due to the restrictions relating to COVID-19 and until further advice, all events at The University of Melbourne, including the VCE Lectures, have been postponed.  

    Are you interested in a career in science or engineering? Eager to find out more about the world around you? You will find studying Physics a lot easier with these special lectures. They are based directly on the VCE Study Design and presented by outstanding experts in the various areas.

    Join us at 5.30 pm for a drink and snack. The lectures will start at 6 pm and finish at 7.00 pm and will be held in the Hercus Theatre, Physics South Building.

    Please register your attendance for each night through the links below. Students who register for all lectures will be recognised at the last lecture in the 2020 series.

    Lecture titles and registration links will be updated throughout the term. Contact us directly at vce@physics.unimelb.edu.au

  • Notes from past lectures

    All lectures are in pdf format.

Contact us

If you would like to contact us regarding a School trip, or borrowing equipment, or anything Physics related, please don't hesitate to email outreach@physics.unimelb.edu.au.