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Medical Physics and Biomedical Engineering

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The Brilliant Club Scholars Programme

26 April 2018

Research Associate Dr Gemma Bale, and PhD students Isabel de Roever and Pardis Kaynezhad have been working with the Brilliant Club to inspire talented Year 8 pupils from under-represented backgrounds to apply to study medical physics and biomedical engineering.

The Brilliant Club is an organisation which mobilises PhD students to engage with state schools, and support talented pupils from under-represented backgrounds to progress to selective universities. 

The Scholars Programme employs doctoral and post-doctoral researchers to deliver programmes of academic enrichment to small groups of pupils, through a combination of university trips, in-school tutorials and online resources. 

In partnership with The Brilliant Club and UCL Engineering Education, Dr. Gemma Bale (BORL) has designed a six-week Key Stage 3 course, Illuminating the Body, for the programme, which uses the MetaboLight public engagement platform to teach Year 8 students about the engineering design process, the application of physical principles to the design of machines, and how scientists interpret data. Having spent several weeks exploring the engineering behind NIRS, the students are then challenged to design and write a 1500 word report on a NIRS system to monitor muscle in athletes.

Magazine cover featuring a silhouette of a child with the brain illuminated

The course is being delivered by 31 tutors all over the country, reaching almost 400 pupils! Two PhD students from BORL are delivering the course, Isabel de Roever and Pardis Kaynezhad. Pardis is pictured here at the launch trip for the course at Royal Holloway, University of London, on 18 April, with pupils from the London Academy.

Pupils from London Academy at Royal Holloway campus

"My first experience as a PhD tutor for the Brilliant Club has been extraordinary so far and the amount of support and guidance I received from the wonderful and friendly staff has been incredible. 

I really enjoyed the launch trip at the Royal Holloway University and my first tutorial with year 8 pupils from London Academy was delightful. 

It was very encouraging to see how talented and enthusiastic the pupils were about an engineering subject that they came to know for the very first time. It was also surprising how their understanding of engineering changed drastically after the first tutorial. Furthermore, after reading and discussing some case studies from the MetaboLight group with their peers, the students perfectly fathomed the need for advancements in Medical Physics and Biomedical Engineering in saving lives and were amazed by its importance. 

I look forward to my future tutorials with this fantastic group of pupils and I am proud to be associated with such a worthwhile cause at the Brilliant Club."

" - Paradis Kaynezhad