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STEM X Academy FAQs

What is the STEM X Academy?

The STEM X Academy is a teacher professional learning opportunity run in partnership between the Australian Science Teachers Association (ASTA), CSIRO and Questacon. Participants will undertake work with CSIRO and Questacon on a hands-on STEM pedagogy-based program designed to provide practical resources and ideas to take back to the classroom and share with colleagues. They will meet with scientists, learn about their research and develop a suite of activities to use with students.

The program also includes a diverse range of presentations by scientists and researchers who will explore some of the incredible work being done in fields such as molecular chemistry, climate change and astrophysics. Teachers will visit some of Canberra's premier science facilities including the Mount Stromlo Observatory, Geoscience Australia, Questacon and the CSIRO Discovery Centre for a look at how science permeates all areas of modern life.

When and where will the 2018 STEM X Academy be held?

In 2020 the STEM X Academy will be held from 5-10 January. Teachers will be flown to Canberra from their closest capital city on Sunday 5 January in time to begin the program on Monday morning. Where possible, teachers will leave Canberra on the afternoon/evening of Friday 10 January. Otherwise they will leave on Saturday morning.

Delegates will be housed at Wamburun Hall, a new student accommodation complex at the ANU for the duration of the program. The program will take place across two venues - Questacon's Ian Potter Technology Learning Centre and CSIRO's Discovery Centre. Transport to and from these venues is covered by the program.

Who can attend the STEM X Academy?

Australian primary or secondary teachers from any state or territory are welcome to attend the STEM X Academy. With limited spaces available, we do require interested applicants to apply by submitting an online application form.

Is the STEM X Academy suitable for both primary and secondary teachers?

Yes, and in 2020 there will be an intake of 70 teachers participating in two concurrent residential programs - one for secondary science teachers and the other for primary teachers. A focus of the 2020 STEM X Academy program is the development of hands-on, enquiry-based lessons and activities using available materials, and adapting activities and teaching methods to suit your classroom.  If you feel you could benefit from this, then the STEM X Academy will be of value to you.

What will I gain from attending the STEM X Academy?

The STEM X Academy will help teachers transform their STEM teaching with workshops that model pedagogical skills and that will support delivery of the Australian Curriculum. Participants will learn how to create teaching resources, activities, demonstrations and strategies to engage and stimulate students, and discover ways to more deeply link their lessons with real-world science and research. 

Teachers will also be exposed to cutting-edge science and research, to reignite and fuel their own interest and passion for science so they can translate that enthusiasm to their students.

How much does it cost to attend the STEM X Academy?

Successful applicants will be asked to make a one-off contribution towards costs. This contribution will cover flights to and from Canberra and the participant's closest capital city, as well as accomodation, meals, transport and venue entry fees associatied with the program.

How do I apply for a scholarship, and what does it cover?

Thanks to generous support from a range of sponsors and partners a number of STEM X Academy scholarships are available. Scholarships will cover the one-off contribution required by delegates.

Scholarships are designed to support teachers who find it difficult to access professional development opportunities, and who would strongly benefit from attending a program like the STEM X Academy. Anybody who feels this describes their situation may apply for a scholarship. Scholarship applicants are asked to indicate on the application form that they wish to be considered for a scholarship, and fill in an additional question.

Unsuccessful scholarship applicants may still be offered a paying spot to attend the STEM X Academy.

I would like to visit Canberra for a few days before or after the program starts. Can this be arranged?

Yes, but the STEM X Academy takes no responsibility for arranging any transport or accomodation outside of the program. You will also be responsible for any changes to your flights once they have been booked, and accountable for any associated fees.

Can the STEM X Academy fly me to Canberra from my local airport instead of from my closest major airport?

No. The STEM X Academy is not able to cover the increased costs associated with multi-leg journeys between Canberra and small local airports. It is the responsibility of participants to arrange transport to and from an airport that provides direct flights to Canberra, and to cover the cost of that transport.

If I live in the ACT, can I attend the STEM X Academy at a reduced cost?

No.  All participants are required to stay on campus at Bruce Hall, to more closely engage with other participants.