Graphic design image showing three heads and scientific symbols

"The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and science." - Albert Einstein

Information at a Glance

  • Evening Class
  • Wednesdays 18:00 - 20:00
  • 10 weeks: January to March
  • 2 hours taught time per week
  • Tutor: Linda van Keimpema (STC)
  • Fees from £115 to £200
  • Location: Imperial College, South Kensington Campus
Booking link

The universe is an amazing place. It is vaster than it is possible to measure, stranger and more magical than any science fiction or fantasy, more beautiful than any art, and far more complex than can ever be imagined. Studying the universe – studying science – whether that is on the grandest scales of cosmology, the smallest scales of quantum physics and subatomic chemistry, or the beautiful complexity of life, is to set yourself on the path to an adventure that will stay with you forever.

This course, Introduction to Science, aims to give you just a taste for that adventure, as we travel through the entirety of scientific understanding (or at least as much as we can fit in). Starting with the very first moments of creation, we will journey through physics to explore what is known about how the universe works; we will witness the creation of the earth, the evolution of life, learn about genetics, explore how humans are able to live and thrive amidst the challenges of nature, and how we are changing that nature, and the implications of this. We will explore the technology all around us, and the everyday implications that this has for how we live; and then we will plunge into the future and look at some of the exciting developments that will affect us in the next few years.

Each week we will explore a new topic, as well as discussing the science that is going on in the world around us. If you have ever wanted to learn more about the science and the way everything works, join us for what promises to be an exciting ride!

No prior knowledge of science is required, just an inquisitive mind!

Course Information

Course Programme

Indicative Programme (subject to possible change)

1. Cosmology and Physics

  • Origin of the universe 
  • Stars and planets 
  • Our solar system 
  • Some important laws of physics

2. Geology

  • Timeline of Earth
  • Structure of the Earth 
  • Tectonicsvolcanoes 
  • Weather

3. Evolution of Life 

  • Timeline of life on earth 
  • Evolution of species 
  • Mass extinctions 
  • Human evolution

4. Chemistry and Energy 

  • The build-up of atoms
  • Molecules and ions 
  • Chemical reaction
  • Generating energy 

5. Genetics and Diversity

  • DNA and genes
  • Genetic inheritance 
  • Epigenetics 
  • The benefits of diversity 

6. Medicine

  • Some early views on medicine
  • Timeline of medical inventions 
  • The workings of the immune system 
  • Stem cells/CRISPR-Cas9

7. The Brain and AI

  • Some early ideas on the brain 
  • Milestones in neuroscience 
  • Brain functioning 
  • AI - artificial intelligence

8. Mathematics and Computing

  • Milestones in mathematics 
  • The history of computers 
  • The origin and development of the internet 
  • Chips and supercomputers

9. Engineering 

  • Buildings 
  • Bridges 
  • Infrastructure 
  • Transport

10. Scientific Breakthroughs and Key Scientists 

  • Breakthrough discoveries 
  • Some notable important scientists 
  • Latest big scientific topics 
  • Expected breakthroughs / possible breakthroughs

Additional Reading and Credit Information

There is no compulsory reading required for this course, and there is no set course text.

No academic credits are available for this course. An attendance certificate is issued only to those who attend at least 80% of the taught sessions.

About Your Tutor

Photograph of Dr Linda van Keimpema Your tutor (STC) will be Dr Linda van Keimpema, who is a researcher into molecular neuroscience and has taught biology, physics, mathematics and other science-related topics at VU University in Amsterdam and at Kaplan International College in London. 

Course Fees and Rate Categories

HoursWeeksStandard RateInternal RateAssociate Rate
 20  10  £200
* Early Bird rate unavailable for courses starting in January

Rate Categories and Discounts

Standard Rate

  • Applicable to all except those who fall under the Internal Rate or Associate Rate category, respectively.

Internal Rate

  • Applies to current Imperial College students and staff (incl. Imperial NHS Trust, Imperial Innovations, ancillary & service staff employed on long-term contracts at Imperial College by third-party contractors).
  • Current Centre for Languages, Culture and Communication (CLCC) staff, current CLCC PhD students, Science Communication (Sci Comm) postgraduate students, and students enrolled on an Imperial College 'Language for Science' degree programme should email evening before completing the online enrolment form.

Associate Rate

  • Students (non-Imperial College)
  • Alumni of Imperial College and predecessor colleges and institutes
  • City & Guilds College Association members
  • Members of the Friends of Imperial College
  • Francis Crick Institute staff, researchers and students
  • Members of the UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP)
  • Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea Council staff
  • Harrods staff
  • Historic Royal Palaces staff
  • Natural History Museum staff
  • Science Museum staff
  • South London Botanical Institute Members
  • Victoria and Albert Museum staff
  • Royal Geographical Society staff
  • Royal College of Art and Royal College of Music tutors and other staff
  • Santander Bank staff (Imperial College Walkway branch only)
  • Austrian Cultural Forum staff
  • Staff of Exhibition Road Cultural Group (Discover South Kensington) organisations
  • Lycee Charles de Gaulle staff
  • Tutors and other staff of other universities and higher education institutions
  • Tutors and other staff of institution members of the Association of Colleges
  • Residents of postcodes SW3, SW5, SW7, SW10 and W8
  • Members of the UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP)
  • Members of the South London Botanical Institute (SLBI)

Late enrolment

It is possible to enrol on many CLCC Evening Class and Lunchtime Learning programmes after the course has started. For non-language courses this is subject entirely to agreement by the tutor. For language courses it is subject to agreement by the language Coordinator conducting level assessment. If you want to join a course late do bear in mind there might be work you will need to catch up on, particularly in language courses.

Applicable terms & conditions

Please read the  before enrolling on any course.

Term Dates

HoursWeeksAutumn termSpring termSummer termSummer School
 20  10 n/a 18 Jan - 26 Mar 2021 (10 weeks)* n/a n/a
* This is a 1-term course

Certificate of Attendance

Our adult education evening and daytime classes do not offer academic credits, but we do offer an attendance certificate to those learners who attend at least 80% (8) of the taught classroom sessions. Eligible learners receive their certificate by email after the end of the course.

Enrolment Process

Web enrolment starts TBA

Enrolment & payment are through the Imperial College eStore. Please use above booking link noting below instructions:

  • Our rate categories are explained on this page and your applicable category must be selected on the eStore
  • First-time eStore users please create an account by entering an email address and password. These credentials should also be used for future bookings. Imperial College users please note the eStore is not a single-signon College system
  • The booking process involves entering payment details before your course choice and applicant details are queried on an in-built questionnnaire which completes the process
  • The following email notifications will be sent
What is sentWhen is it sentWhat does it contain
1. Payment confirmation Instantaneously following submission of your online application
  • Confirms your payment, date of payment and order number
  • Should not be treated as a course-enrolment receipt and therefore does not show your course however these details are sent to us via the system
2. Enrolment confirmation Sent in due course but likely not before the end of September. Please treat your payment confirmation as confirmation that your applicant details and payment have been received
  • Confirms your course choice
  • Shows the programme your course is part of as well as the term dates
  • Confirms your course' day of the week & time
3. Programme information Usually sent Friday late afternoon the week before term starts
  • Contains further course details incl. classroom location and teacher contact information
  • Provides further general programme details
If you need further help with the above information please ring 020 7594 8756

Any Questions?

Questions regarding the content and teaching of the above course should be sent to the Programme Manager for Evening Classes, Dr Michael Paraskos, at