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The Department of Chemistry's Chemistry Outreach Group, comprising mostly postgraduate students, do about 1000 hours a year of work with Primary, Intermediate and High School students around Dunedin, Otago and Southland. In particular, students create and run weekly or fortnightly classes, and 'chemistry magic shows' for students in over 30 schools across the region.


Research by the National Education Monitoring project has identified years 4 to 8 as being the time when students become disengaged with science, we therefore target this age range, although we do work with other age ranges. This not only raises the profile of chemistry, and science in general, in these schools but also gives our own students the chance to gain new skills in both understanding and then communicating scientific ideas effectively as well as sharing their enthusiasm for science (areas identified the government as a desirable in practising scientists).

We have been highlighted by the:

as a model for successful outreach within NZ and recently have hosted International visitors from the UK and USA to work with us. We are also heavily involved with:

This programme is solely funded within the Department of Chemistry and there is no cost to schools who we work with.

Students can use their time spent on outreach to qualify for a Certificate in Outreach from the Division of Sciences.

Chemistry on the Web

American Chemical Society

Information and resources from the website of the American Chemical Society

Bristol ChemLabS

The outreach website for the Bristol ChemLabS project

Royal Society of Chemistry

The leading organisation in Europe for advancing the chemical sciences.

Iron in the Antarctic

Rob and Ella, lecturer and Honours student from the University of Otago's Chemistry department investigating the amount of dissolved iron in the oceans and seas around Antarctica.

Chemistry Outreach on YouTube

View the latest videos on our YouTube channel

RSC Video resources

All the video resources from the RSC are now available on Youtube, including thermite, halogens and many others, including interviews with young chemists about their careers.

Never Stop Reactions

A collaboration between members of the Never Stop Recording crew and the University of Otago's Chemistry Outreach team.

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