16-18 Summer School 2020

Our summer school for biologists, aspiring ecologists aged 16-18 and their teachers

16-18 Summer School

20-24th July 2020 at Malham Tarn Field Studies Centre

The BES 16-18 Summer School is a week long residential field experience for students studying sciences at A-level, Scottish Higher and other similar qualifications.

We’re offering a fully funded place for 1 teacher per school and upto 5 students.  Students are selected by schools and must meet at least one of the following criteria;

  • from a low income background (schools are encouraged to use POLAR, pupil premium data etc but also informal mesaures based on their knowldge of their students home lives and access to wider learning experiences)
  • under respresented ethnicities and groups with STEM
  • first generation in family to consider higher education

All students should be taking a course of study that reasonably allows progression to Higher Education for biosciences, geography and ecological science related courses, students may or may not yet have clear ideas about what they intend to study at univeristy.

The residential is an all-expenses paid 5 days of ecology, fieldwork, careers development and support from Undergraduates , Masters students and PhD students.  We have a wonderful programme of world leading ecologists to provide workshops and plenary talks.  Along with a chance to present our very own Tarnwatch.

Teachers have a chance to immerse themsleves back into the fun of being a science fan in the field and to work together with the support of a lead teacher who attended last year to develop ideas to cascade back into the whole school.

Students and teachers arrive on Sunday evening 19th July so that they can meet each other, meet their UG/MSc and PhD mentors, feel comfortable in the space and rest up from their travels before starting the programme on Monday morning.  They depart at 12.00pm on Friday 24th to travel home.

Here’s what happened in 2019: Our programme for the week was delivered by ecologists across a breadth of ecological disciplines and we are very grateful for all their time, effort and inspiration.


Tarnwatch was a chance for students to share their stories about their learning during each day, recorded and broadcast live each night.  We are immensely grateful to the Open University who worked with students all week to produce the nightly broadcast and all students and speakers who contributed their time to the summer school and it’s broadcast

You can watch below or via our Youtube channel.

Thursday 25th July:

On Thursday, students headed out to the caves and spent time working with CIEEM on environmental management.


Wednesday 24th July:

On Tuesday and Wednesday, students considered microbial and mammalian ecology alongside conservation biology.


Tuesday 23rd July:

On Monday and Tuesday this week, Our students shared their thoughts on global challenges and explored the role of terrestrial and aquatic entomology.