The Physics Mentoring Project has received an interim evaluation report from their external project evaluators, OnData, with regards to the first cycle of mentoring.
87 year 10 and 11 students (52% of which are female) from 9 schools in Wales in the period between January and June 2019. Following participation in the mentoring programme mentees expressed a more positive attitude to taking A-level physics. An improvement was also seen in the number of female mentees stating an intention of going into a career related to STEM. Participation in PMP seems to have supported informed decision making for students. Those participating in the project became surer about decisions relating to their A levels, whilst those not participating seemed to become more unsure.
Mentees (who completed and returned the reflection journals) were very positive about the experience. They regularly reported that the sessions were engaging, the mentors encouraging and supportive and that they learnt more about physics in terms of subject knowledge, careers and the relatedness of Physics to other science subjects and the wider world.
Mentors who fully completed reflective journals were very positive about the experience and said that they would like to participate again in the future, that it was a nice way to engage teenagers, who the mentors had previously perceived to be a challenging age group. Mentors enjoyed being able to share their own personal experience to the benefit of others to help them have a better understanding of what studying physics is like.
The project team has been working hard over the summer to implement improvements based on the report’s recommendations. Click here to read the full report.