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Staff and students in the School of Biological Sciences engage in a range of outreach activities, including University Open Days, public lectures, science fairs, presentations at local cafes, hands-on workshops and mentoring in local schools.

We release scientific information to society through the publication of research articles and presentations at conferences.


Outreach activities for schools

At the University, we provide field trips and practical sessions. We can visit your school for talks and career day visits.

We require a minimum of two months’ notice to reserve space and plan activities.

Reading Scholars programme (November to June, with recruitment beginning in August)

The School of Biological Sciences delivers several practical workshops in the Biology strand of the Reading Scholars programme.

We provide Year 12 students with valuable laboratory exposure and academic skills to bolster UCAS applications and help facilitate the transition to university learning.

The programme is aimed at students from certain priority backgrounds – check your eligibility.

ReadiLab (October to April, with recruitment beginning in August)

This is a unique outreach experience which uses engaging practical workshops, demos, case studies and problem-based learning techniques to teach children and young people how nutrition and other environmental exposures may interact with genes to promote disease.

Students will learn about how various foods may cause obesity or diabetes and how stress affects our bodies and causes disease.

We are offering the programme to Year 9 and Year 12 students for the 2022/23 academic year. Please contact our School's Director of Outreach, Dr Dyan Sellayah for prospective dates and further details. 

Lab practical sessions

We usually invite Year 12 students on to campus for taster sessions in the summer (July/August). This is an engaging day of lab-based activities and seminars, which introduce students to the full spectrum of biological science study at university level.

Students will also learn more about our various degree programmes and get some useful tips for preparing UCAS applications.

At your school or the University

  • Talks and some interactive demos for primary and secondary schools on how brains work, evolution and more.
  • Career Day visits on what it means to be a scientist or educator and what you can do with a biology degree.

Mentoring for school students

We connect with budding young scientists through our hands on workshops and mentoring for younger students.

Science talks

Come to one of our public lectures, science fairs or presentations at local cafes. Visit our Twitter site @ReadingBioSci for details of upcoming events.

Online courses


Listen to our Discover Reading Biomedical Sciences podcast episode. In this episode, Dr Dyan Sellayah and Dr Simon Clarke join Chris and Phil to chat about everything Covid, how the virus works, what the future might hold and why healthy living is of the utmost importance in a potential age of pandemics.

Open online courses

Our online courses are free, flexible and open to everyone. They provide a great introduction to the world of biology, whether you're learning for fun, to develop a new skill, or to prepare for an undergraduate degree in our School.

Heart Health: A Beginner's Guide to Cardiovascular Disease

Do you want to know more about heart disease and how your heart works? This beginner's guide to cardiovascular disease (CVD) covers the causes, consequences and treatment of CVD and raises awareness of current research.

Join the Heart Health course

Small and Mighty: An Introduction to Microbiology

Microbes may be invisible without the use of a microscope, but they dominate every environment on Earth – including your body! Learn how microbes function, how they affect our health, food and environment, and how we can make use of microbes to benefit society.

Join the Small and Mighty microbiology course

Contact us

For more information on our outreach programmes and events within the community, please get in touch with our School's Director of Outreach, Dr Dyan Sellayah.

Undergraduate study

Our undergraduate courses offer you a wealth of options for learning about the living world. Whether you're keen to explore biology in all its breadth, or focus on a specialist discipline that fascinates you, you'll find a course to suit you.

Our research

The aim of our Biomedical Sciences research is to extend life, ease pain, combat diseases such as cancer, diabetes and cardiovascular disease, and enhance the healthy state.

Meet the team

Our community of staff includes internationally renowned academics, recognised for the excellence of their teaching and research.
Athena SWAN Silver Award