Physics Summer Schools

The Debate Chamber Physics Summer School is an opportunity for aspirational students to explore some of the most exciting and challenging ideas in contemporary physics. Each course consists of a structured five-day programme covering a selection of interesting and diverse topics, ranging from black holes and time travel to the search for exo-planets and life outside the solar system.

Physics Summer School – Part 1 focuses on Classical Mechanics and Astrophysics with an emphasis on modern applications of Newtonian Mechanics and is open to all students aged 15-18. Topics will include rocket propulsion, spaceship design, planetary colonisation, satellite motion, telescope design, measuring the speed of light, the principle of least time, laws of thermodynamics, entropy, the arrow of time, stellar evolution and detecting the afterglow of the big bang.

Physics Summer School – Part 2 focuses on Quantum Mechanics and Relativity with an emphasis on the mathematical and conceptual foundations of these ideas and requires that students have completed AS Mathematics (or equivalent) at the time of the course. Topics will include Schrödinger’s equation, Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle, Einstein’s special and general theories of relativity, time dilation, length contraction, black holes, gravitational red-shift, evidence for the big bang and the search for a Grand Unified Theory.

Classes are small, typically containing twelve to fourteen students, all of whom share a passion for physics and a curiosity to build on their existing knowledge and embrace new ideas. Classes will consist of a combination of lectures, group discussions, team exercises and problem sets, creating a comfortable environment for students to share ideas amongst their peers and to progress from their existing knowledge toward more challenging material. An expert Tutor will lead each session in a seminar format, but learning will be largely student-led wherever practical.

Please note that, although both courses complement each other, they may be treated as independent events and there is no requirement to have attended Part 1 in order to attend Part 2. Part 2 of the course will offer a strong mathematical component and an undergraduate approach to learning, helping students to make informed decisions about continuing in the study of physics, as well as bridging the educational gap between secondary school and university.

You can view a full schedule for each course, details of tutors and lots more feedback from last year on our website –

Feedback from previous students

‘A really fantastic week, taught by some truly inspirational tutors whose passion for physics really showed in their energetic and engaging sessions. The slightly relaxed atmosphere worked incredibly well because it allowed the students and tutors to discuss in detail anything that we were curious about even if it wasn’t specifically on our timetable. This has made me really look forward to studying physics at university, and I feel the week gave me a great insight into degree level physics. I highly recommend this summer school to other physics enthusiasts!’

‘This was by far the most informative, productive and enjoyable week of my summer holiday. It was an incredibly well balanced and finely tuned course, which not only expanded my knowledge of physics, but my skills in applying it to unfamiliar problems. Chilled atmosphere, tutors approachable and engaging; couldn’t recommend this course more for aspiring physicists.’

‘The course was brilliant; usually complex and abstract topics in Physics were explained to you in the space of five days! The courses built upon the knowledge you had and decided to push you a little extra. They really inspired me to further research more complex topics in Physics in greater detail.

‘Challenging, but great fun, the Physics course was a fantastic opportunity to gain a better insight into some of the fundamental principles that govern our world, giving me a better idea of what Physics at University might be like. From learning about the rather abstract world of Quantum Mechanics to discussing black holes and even teleportation, the course left me astounded by both the amount we already know, and how much we have yet to discover! I really enjoyed the five days, working with two talented tutors and meeting some other like-minded students. Overall, an incredible week.’


Debate Chamber is committed to ensuring that financial circumstances do not prevent any student from attending our events. Students can apply for bursaries covering up to 100% of the course fee through our website.

How can my students attend?

All the Summer School events will be held at University of London venues in Bloomsbury, Central London, and will take place in July and August 2017. Please note that these courses are not residential, and accommodation must be arranged independently if required.

You can find full details of schedules, dates, costs, student reviews and tutors at .

To book a place please visit , call us on 0845 519 4827, or email Places will be allocated on a first come first served basis.