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

At a Glance

  • Classroom course
  • Mondays 18:30 - 20:30
  • 10 weeks: October to December
  • Tutor: Linda van Keimpema
  • Course not running this term
Course not running this term

Course not running this term

Science is everywhere: it allows you to make a nice warm cup of tea, to see all the objects around you, and to cross water by walking over a bridge. Science also holds our galaxy together, it makes the laws that drive biodiversity, and describes the nature of subatomic particles - the building blocks of everything. Diving into the diversity and beauty of science will bring you an adventurous ride full of knowledge and surprises.

This ten-week course 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 cosmos, we will travel through our universe and discuss all the objects we meet on the way. Landing on Earth we will learn about the ever changing aspects of our planet, and how Earth can support life. We will learn about the chemical building blocks of life, discover how our genetics determines who we are, see how our body works and can be improved using modern medicine, and explore how the knowledge of mathematics, artificial intelligence, and applied sciences shaped the modern world.

Each week we will explore a new topic, as well as discussing the science that is going on in the world around us and how we think that science will affect our future. If you have ever wanted to learn more about 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!

Classroom Course

This course will be taught face-to-face in the classrooms at our South Kensington Campus in London. To take part in the course you will need to be able to attend our South Kensington Campus each week on the day and time shown above.

Attendance Certificate


Successful completion of this course leads to the award of an Imperial College attendance certificate


Terms and conditions apply to all enrolments to this course. Please read them before enrolment

Course Information

Course Programme and Additional Reading

Course Programme

Session 1: The Universe

  • In this session we will discuss the origin of the universe, and discover how stars and planets were born. We will learn about the different objects which we can find in the universe today.

Session 2: Astrobiology

  • We will learn what is needed for life, examples of extreme life on Earth, and where we might find extra-terrestrial life. We will take a close look at the Moon and its interaction with Earth.

Session 3: Climate

  • In this session we will learn about the changes in Earth’s atmosphere: weather and climate. We will discuss how the weather changes over short and long time periods.

Session 4: Quantum Physics

  • We will discover the build-up of atoms, and the nature of the different elementary particles. We will learn how new atoms are detected and the laws of physics which apply at this smallest scale.

Session 5: Genetics

  • In this lesson we will learn everything about the genetic code of life: DNA. We will discover how DNA determines what you look like and how it is inherited over generations.

Session 6: Evolution

  • We will learn how organisms evolved, how this gave rise to many species, and about major extinction events which limited diversity. We will take a close look at the evolution into modern humans.

Session 7: Disease

  • We will learn what can cause a disease and how the immune system is able to prevent diseases. We will discover how pharmaceuticals are designed to prevent and cure diseases.

Session 8: Neuroscience

  • We will discuss the aspects of the brain: how it is build up and how it performs all it’s different functions. We will learn how brain cells work - and work together - and how memory is formed.

Session 9: Computers

  • We will dive into the development of the first computers, and how they became the amazing machines we have today. We will learn about artificial intelligence and it’s many implications.

Session 10: History of science

  • We will follow the history of science and scientific discoveries, recognising how it changed over decades and discussing modern day science.

Additional Reading

There is no compulsory reading required for this course, and there is no set course text. However, if you would like to read more on the subject you might enjoy the book:

  • William F. Bynum, A Little History of Science (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2013)

Your Tutor

Photograph of Linda van KeimpemaDr Linda van Keimpema completed a PhD 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. She works at Imperial College London to support delivery of Science Education to the Medical students.

Course Fees and Rate Categories

HoursWeeksStandard RateInternal RateAssociate Rate
 20 10 Early Bird: £212  (£10.60 p/h) 
Full price: £235   (£11.75 p/h)
Early Bird: £126  (£6.30 p/h) 
Full price: £140   (£7 p/h)
Early Bird: £166  (£8.30 p/h) 
Full price: £185   (£9.25 p/h)
All fee rates quoted are for the whole course. Early Bird rates available 1 August to 30 September 2022 only. Part-payments are not possible. Equivalent to hourly rate is shown for comparison guidance only, it is not possible to pay pro-rata hourly rates.

Rate Categories and Discounts

Standard Rate

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

Internal Rate

  • 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)
  • Individuals enrolling under our Friends & Family scheme
  • Staff of the English Chamber Orchestra
  • Students, staff and Governors of Woodhouse College and the IC Mathematics School
  • 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 contact before completing the online enrolment form

Associate Rate

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

Late enrolment

It is possible to enrol on many of our adult education courses after the course has already 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.

Friends and Family Scheme

This course is eligible for the  allowing Imperial College students and staff to share their discount with their friends and family.

Term Dates 2022-23

HoursWeeksAutumn termSpring termSummer term
 20  10 Week commencing 10 October to week ending 17 December 2022* n/a n/a
*This is a 1-term course

Enrolment Process

Web enrolment starts 1 August 2022. Early bird discounts are available from 1 August to 30 September 2022.

Enrolment and payment run through the Imperial College eStore. When enrolling:

  • Do check on the drop down menu above called "Course Fees and Rate Categories" to see if you are eligible for a discounted rate and also do make sure you select that rate when enrolling on the eStore
  • If you are a first-time eStore user you will need to create an account before enrolling. You can do this by entering an email address and password. This account can then be used for any future enrolments via the eStore.

When you have enrolled you will be sent the following email notifications:

What is sentWhen is it sentWhat does it contain
1. Payment confirmation Is sent instantaneously following submission of your online application
  • This is a receipt for your payment and includes payment date, order number and course title
  • Confirmation of your place on your chosen course will follow later
2. Enrolment confirmation Is sent within 10 working days. Please treat your payment confirmation as confirmation that your applicant details and payment have been received
  • Re-confirms your course choice
  • Shows your course's term dates
  • Confirms the day and time of your course
3. Programme information Is usually sent on Friday late afternoon the week before term starts
  • Contains joining instructions for your course, incl. tutor contact details
If you need further help with the above information please ring 020 7594 8756

Any Questions?

If you have any questions about the academic content or teaching of this course please contact the Course Tutor, Dr Linda van Keimpema,

If you have any questions about your enrolment or payment processes please contact the Programme Administrator, Christian Jacobi,