Physics Student Community – South West

Target Audience: students from Cornwall, Devon, Dorset and Somerset who stand out for their achievement in and/or enthusiasm for physics.

Format: five enrichment days led by EMS,  spread throughout the year (note: we may need to run less than 5 sessions per year group during the academic year 20-21 owing to the Covid-19 situation).

Aim: to provide students, that might otherwise be isolated, with a community of like-minded peers to explore challenging and interesting physics.

How to get involved:  Teacher nominations for the 2020-21 programme are now closed.  Please email if you would like to make a late nomination.

Capacity: 64 (16 per year)

The PSC is a rolling programme for students from Years 8-11.  Students join us at the beginning of Year 8 and remain on the programme until Year 11.

Our aim is to bring together and inspire able physics students from across Cornwall, Devon, Dorset and Somerset, forming a community of learners who will work together, share ideas, attend masterclasses and receive mentoring; delivering a fascinating insight into the exciting field of physics!

Teachers frequently identify students within their settings who stand out from the crowd and who can find themselves working in isolation.  Our aim is to bring these students together, to enable them to work with peers who are similarly able and motivated, to provide stimuli which will deepen and broaden their appreciation of physics and its related fields and to demonstrate how physics relates to their lives.

It is our intention to support students throughout their secondary school career, regardless of whether or not they decide to apply for a place in our sixth form.

How it works

Students joining the PSC-SW will participate in a series of enrichment days with Exeter Mathematics School.  The dates for the 2020-21 programme are not yet confirmed owing to the complexities of timetabling during the Covid-19 situation. Students will be kept informed.  Please note that all autumn term 2020 sessions will be delivered online.

During the enrichment days students will take part in masterclasses and workshops. They will be  introduced to Physics beyond the normal curriculum and will be encouraged to think about, debate and explore challenging concepts and ideas.

How to join

This programme is teacher nominated only; we cannot accept applications from students directly.  Nominations for the 20-21 academic year are now closed.  If you wish to make a late application, please email

If you are already part of the PSC, you will automatically be moved up into the next year group for 2020-21.

Physics GCSE Enhancement Course

Target Audience: students within reach of Exeter who are not yet working at the highest level (i.e. working at a 6/7, but capable of achieving an 8/9).

Format: 16 online lessons per year delivered by EMS teachers after school hours. Year 11 group will begin in the autumn term with the programme concluding at February half-term.   The Year 10 programme will begin in the spring term.

Aim: to enable students to achieve better GCSE grades than initially predicted and to therefore have greater opportunities in Further and Higher education.

How to get involved: Nominations for the Year 10 2020-21 programme will open in the second half of autumn term. We currently have spaces in our Year 11 group – teachers, please email to nominate Year 11 students.

Capacity: 32 (16 per year group).

During a series of workshops and group sessions, students will have the opportunity to develop a deeper and more connected understanding of GCSE content.

Supported by EMS staff, students will be provided with the stimuli to broaden their application of Physics and its related fields, whilst supporting their development; thereby encouraging them towards further study of Physics beyond GCSE.

How it works

Students will attend 16 online sessions in total during the autumn (Year 11 cohort) and spring (Year 10 cohort) terms.

How to join

This programme is teacher nominated only; we cannot accept applications from students directly. Teachers are invited to nominate Year 10 students during the autumn term.  Please email if you wish to nominate Year 11 students as we currently have spaces in this group.

All sessions run on Tuesday afternoons from 1600-1730 at Exeter Mathematics School:

1st October 15th October 5th November
19th November 3rd December 17th December
14th January 28th January 11th February
3rd March 17th March – CANCELLED

All sessions run on Thursday afternoons from 1600-1730 at Exeter Mathematics School:

12th September 26th September 10th October
31st October 14th November 28th November – cancelled
12th December 9th January 23rd January
6th February 12th March

Ogden Trust KS4 Physics Challenge

Target Audience: Year 10 and 11 students in the Exeter & East-Devon area.

When: 2020-21 date TBC.  Watch this space!

Where: The Phoenix, Gandy Street, Exeter, EX4 3LS

Format: An afternoon with four rounds in a team-based inter-school competition.

Aim: to have fun, be challenged, enjoy Physics in a buzzy environment!

How to get involved: Physics teachers are emailed by EMS in the half term before the event takes place.

Capacity: 80 (20 teams)

Ogden Trust KS5 Physics Challenge

Target Audience: year 12 and 13 students in the Exeter & East-Devon area.

Date: 2020-21 date TBC – watch this space!

Format: An afternoon with four rounds in a team-based inter-school competition.

Aim: to have fun, be challenged, enjoy physics in a buzzy environment!

Capacity: 60 (15 teams)

Triangle mountains