K-12 Outreach

The College of Science sponsors and hosts a variety of science programs for K-12 students each year. These programs offer opportunities to learn about science and mathematics and help students get excited about pursuing science and mathematics degrees and careers in their futures.

UTA Planetarium

The UTA Planetarium is available for K-12 field trips in our state-of-the-art, 148-seat theater, located in a groundbreaking research facility on the UTA campus. Students will be able to explore the night sky, the solar system, stars and distant galaxies via our facility, which features the latest in digital technology and software. The UTA Planetarium is the perfect tool to inspire students’ interest in science and technology as well as to teach challenging concepts to students of any age with ease. The content students learn at the Planetarium exceeds TEKS requirements. Planetarium shows are one hour long, with the flexibility to be longer or shorter depending on teachers’ needs. Each show begins with a stargazing segment presented by our astronomer. This is followed by a Q&A session and then a pre-recorded program that meets with teachers’ specific goals. We have almost 40 different titles in our pre-recorded program library. Teachers may preview and evaluate the programs on our website before the field trip. Our astronomer can customize the presentation based on teachers’ curriculum goals. A fun, two-minute long virtual roller coaster ride can be added to the show to promote student engagement and motivation. Teachers may also consider a UTA campus tour for their class. UTA’s Dan Dipert Welcome Center provides campus tours between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. daily. There is no charge for campus tours. Students can have lunch at the campus cafeteria or they can picnic outside on campus grounds. Students may bring their own lunch or we can order pizza, or arrange for tickets to the cafeteria.

Science Ambassadors

The UTA Science Ambassadors, comprised of some of UTA's finest undergraduate students, provide exciting science demonstrations to audiences of students from grades 3 through 12. The Ambassadors have performed over 2,000 shows and delighted, amazed and entertained over 150,000 students. Most of the shows are performed on campus, and visiting students can couple their Science Ambassadors show with a trip to the state-of-the-art UTA Planetarium. Together, they make for a fantastic science field trip. One-hour off-campus shows are also available. Science Ambassadors love science, and they love putting on shows for their audiences. The Science Ambassadors program is made possible by the generous support of UTA and the College of Science.

UTA Calculus Bowl

This high-spirited annual competition, hosted by the Department of Mathematics, has been a huge success since the inaugural event in 2001. Teams of students from area high schools compete to solve challenging calculus problems and to be the first team to click in with the correct answers. Guests are welcome to cheer on their teams, and spirit awards are given to the teams with the most unique outfits. The first and second place team members receive medals and trophies. All high school participants receive free UTA Calculus Bowl T-Shirts and other items.

Bernard Harris Summer Science Camp

The ExxonMobil Bernard Harris Summer Science Camp is a two-week residential experience for Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex students who will be 6th, 7th or 8th grade students in the fall. The core STEM curriculum is integrated with field excursions and other educational experiences that enrich students’ understanding of the practical relationships between classroom work and the real world. Communication and teamwork are integral parts of the students’ camp experience. The camps are held at multiple university locations nationwide each summer; UTA has hosted the event seven times since 2008. To be eligible for this free camp, campers must be historically underserved and underrepresented students; must have at least a B average in mathematics and science courses; must score at least at the median level on STAAR math and science tests; must write a 250 word essay; and must be recommended by their current math and science teachers. The camps are held on varying dates in June-August, with a mandatory orientation session held shortly before the camp begins. The camp was created by The Harris Foundation, a nonprofit organization created by Dr. Bernard Harris Jr., a business executive and retired NASA astronaut who was the first African-American to walk in space during a Space Shuttle mission in 1995.