Secondary Mathematics Masterclass Programme
The Royal Institution coordinates a UK-wide network of mathematics masterclasses and related enrichment activities. There are over 60 secondary masterclass series and related events, stretching from Aberdeen to Cornwall, reaching over 3000 students annually.
Our secondary masterclasses are designed to encourage, inspire and engage young people in the art and practice of mathematics. The highly interactive sessions introduce students to aspects or applications of maths which may not usually be covered in the school curriculum. Topics cover a huge range of mathematical ideas, including diverse applications such as art, cryptography, dinosaurs, mazes and paper folding!
Masterclass programmes are arranged in series of between five to ten classes, with one class running for about two and a half hours. However, we can also arrange one-off masterclasses and workshops for teachers.
Presenters are chosen for their ability to share their insight and enthusiasm for the subject. Students get the opportunity to explore the subject for themselves within each class, either individually or in small groups, with help being on hand if needed. Teachers are especially encouraged to participate in this part of the class. To read a summary of our evaluation by the CEM centre at Durham University click here.
If you wish to read the comprehensive report please email us on email@example.com.
To find out more about the History of the Masterclasses click here.
How the masterclasses are organised
The masterclasses are organised regionally, mainly by independent groups of local volunteers. Our seondary mathematics masterclass network collectively runs over 60 series each year all around the UK. Each group organises one or more series, usually for 12 to 14 year olds. Classes are typically held on Saturday mornings during term time. We also have national networks of primary mathematics masterclasses and secondary engineering masterclasses.
During the summer term, the Ri invites all of that year's participants to a special follow-up masterclass celebration event. For more information, please get in touch or see our "I've been to masterclasses" page.
Attending the masterclasses
Most groups invite students on the basis of teacher recommendation and are looking for not just an aptitude in mathematics, but also a keenness and determination to explore. Local organisers invite schools to nominate students for the masterclasses. This is the only way to attend the masterclasses - we are not able to accept nominations from students or parents.
How to volunteer for us or organise a masterclass
Local volunteers are pivotal to every masterclass series. Organisers manage the mathematical and pastoral support for their masterclass pupils, arrange speakers, and oversee the administration and finances for the series. We recommend forming a committee to share the work of organising a series and to ensure sustainability; local universities, schools and industry are valuable partners. Most groups also invite teacher helpers to attend each session in order to better support the pupils' learning. If you would like to learn more about existing provision in your area and/or help organise a series, please get in touch (details are below).
Help for organisers
The Ri is keen to develop the masterclass network further. We provide support and guidance for organisers, including sample materials, access to masterclass speakers, and guidance on issues such as finding funding. We also provide Ri branded materials for use within the masterclass series and try to visit each masterclass group every few years.
There is an annual conference in June each year where local organisers have the opportunity to meet others and share ideas and experiences.
We are delighted to announce that new masterclass series are taking place in Lowestoft (Suffolk), Bradford (Yorkshire) and Kensington & Chelsea (London) in Autumn 2012 and in Warwick (covering Coventry and Warwickshire) in Spring 2013. All of our existing series are continuing to be extremely sucessful, and we hope that all students who attend enjoy the masterclasses.
We are always keen to support new groups, so if you are interested in helping to set up a group in your area please get in touch.
The Ri Engineering Masterclass network is also expanding! For more information, visit the engineering page or contact us using the detail below.
For further information about anything on this page, including starting new series, arranging one-off masterclasses or interactive lecture-demonstrations (for learners or educators) or developing and delivering new masterclasses, please contact the mathematics team on 020 7670 2915 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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