UNIG∑NIOS is an innovative initiative that is completely in keeping with the ideals extolled by the University of Oviedo, designed to disseminate and encourage an understanding of science throughout society, and especially in relation to the youth of today. Its ultimate aim is to encourage direct interaction between the main players in science (researchers) and the students of today, who will be the scientists of tomorrow.
In order to present the widest possible spectrum of science and stimulate thought and curiosity, we have created a quiz that combines board games and TV quiz shows, relating these to different thematic areas: technology; biology; physics; chemistry; mathematics; and geology.
INITIAL PHASE-offline-April 2. With the participation of a maximum of ten teams (one from each educational centre in Asturias), each consisting of three members. A total of 30 students from the first year of High School Diploma courses:
- a. Show what you know! 60 questions relating to science and technology.
- b. Knowledge and ingenuity in 60 minutes: 10 tests where the participants have to perform small calculations, select the correct answer from several options, put concepts or numbers into the correct order, etc.
- c. Scientific Gymkhana: crosswords, word search puzzles, and science puzzles.
The four teams with the highest scores will return the next day to participate in the final phase.
THE FINAL-offline-April 3
- a. You still know the most!: 30 questions relating to science and technology with a higher level of difficulty.
- b. Knowledge and ingenuity in 60 minutes: 10 tests, where the participants have to resolve more complex problems, where speed, as well as skill and ingenuity will play an important part.
- c. Careful with the “forbidden word”! and the “Big wheel of science”.
The three teams with the highest scores will receive the following prizes: 3 tablets for the three students with the most points, three iPods for the members of the second placed team and three microscopes for the third placed team.
The initiative will be directed by a general coordinator, a multi-disciplinary committee formed by scientists, teachers and linguists, and a series of supporting players (secondary school teachers, an IT specialist and a journalist).
- a. Format
- Quiz that combines different types of tests of a scientific and technological nature in a participative manner (different to the more traditional formats used for the dissemination of scientific knowledge - such as conferences and workshops).
- In this regard, the initiative uses games, and by means of this technique participants have to demonstrate their knowledge, skills and ingenuity.
- To complement training tasks for the youngest sectors of society with activities that allow them to come into contact with SCIENCE, using their own language to do this and bearing in mind that learning and fun are not, necessarily, mutually exclusive concepts.
- To discover students’ talents in the areas of science and technology and simulate these by means of recognition of excellence in the tasks performed, so that they apply their educational experience to scientific and technological fields.
- The initiative primarily seeks to involve young people (1st year high school diploma students) who have an interest in science, and also involve the educational community (school teachers). At the same time it seeks to involve the participation of the general public.
APPLICATION AND REPRODUCTION
Given that this is a straightforward initiative which is relatively easy to organise, any educational centre can carry it out, by just dedicating one day to the activities involved. Similarly, in terms of its application throughout the region, it has been designed to function both locally and regionally (and also potentially at a national level, with larger infrastructures and more human resources).
Different possible uses of the initiative:
- Thematic: allows different questions in all areas of knowledge to be addressed, in experimental sciences and also social sciences and humanities.
- Public: the general public which does not specialise in science, and also secondary school students, high school diploma students and university students may participate in UNIG∑NIOS online.
- Location: direct attendance at the University of Oviedo, but also virtually from any internet connected computer.
- Aimed at a young, technologically-aware public.
- Allows people to approach science from an everyday perspective (board games and TV quiz shows) using non-technical language.
- Awakens scientific interest and curiosity.
Given that it is a clearly educational activity, special care has been taken with the marketing and communication policy employed. Therefore, to ensure that more than just thirty students participate in the initiative, we are going to implement the following tools:
- The initiative will be recorded live by the University of Oviedo Audiovisual Service (UniOvi2+d) and will be broadcast using videostreaming. Regional communications media services will also be provided with the transmission so they can broadcast it via their internet channels.
- Offline and online dissemination of the event will take place via social networks (Facebook and Twitter), communications channels commonly used by young people.
- Three copies of all of the material used will be produced so that the quiz may be taken to other centres, and these will be provided to the educational centres that request them.
- An IT application will be implemented, so that anyone can participate in the quiz from their home with their own username and password.
In addition to the traditional systems of evaluation (number of persons present, web broadcast audience, access to the IT application, impact in the written and audiovisual media, satisfaction questionnaires, etc.) a “post-quiz” period will be opened where the results will be analysed and considered by experts. The scientific dissemination materials, the management know-how, and the network of relationships with other collaborating players will also be made use of.
In addition, given that the initiative is supported by the FECYT (Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology) and the Obra Social La Caixa Foundation, a final report will be prepared which will be sent to both of these institutions.