Western Sydney school students have fun exploring Maths and IT

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Students take part in the 'Rubik's Cube: Patterns and Solutions' activity


More than a hundred Year 7 and 8 students from Western Sydney high schools have participated in an academic enrichment day that focused on Maths and IT at the University of Western Sydney's Penrith campus.

Math IT 2012 provided students with hands-on experience across a range of exercises and challenges linked to maths and computing.

Manager of Schools Engagement at UWS, Anne McLean, says building interest and capacity in Science, Maths, Engineering and Technology is a priority area for the University's Schools Engagement program.

“This is the third year the University has run the event and every year more schools and students take part,” says Ms McLean.

"By giving talented students the chance to meet academics and researchers from computing and maths, and raising their awareness of the exciting and diverse opportunities in these fields while they are still in the junior years of high school, we hope they will continue to enjoy these subjects and make them a focus leading into senior high school and beyond."

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A student from Penrith High School ventures into the world of 'Virtual Reality and Artificial Intelligence'


Associate Professor Glenn Stone, from the School of Computing, Engineering and Mathematics gave a keynote address on ‘What are the Chances? Statistics in our Random World’.

The students were then split into groups and rotated through five 35 minute interactive activities with each group assigned a UWS student as a guide.

Activities were run by staff from the UWS School of Computing, Engineering and Mathematics, and Schools Engagement, and included:

  • Rubik's Cube: Patterns and Solutions
  • Sorting Out Your Life (or Ordering Your Bits)
  • Mathematical Marvels
  • Virtual Reality and Artificial Intelligence
  • The Mathematics Amazing Race

Ms McLean says the students had a great time and feedback from them and their teachers was excellent.

"Often students don't realise how many real-world applications maths actually has, or the number of rewarding careers it underpins."

"When students get to university they need maths for degrees not just in sciences, engineering and accounting, but also in areas like marketing, nursing and international studies."

"Fostering a deeper interest now in Maths and IT and showing students how important these areas are will benefit them in the future as they progress to further study and careers."

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A Xavier College student gets involved in 'Surfing the Planet', which was part of the 'Mathematics Amazing Race' challenge


Western Sydney schools participating in Maths IT 2012 were:

  • Caroline Chisholm College
  • Colyton High School
  • Cranebrook High School
  • Greystanes High School
  • Jamison High School
  • Norwest Christian College
  • Penrith Anglican College
  • Penrith High School
  • Rooty Hill High School
  • Tara Anglican School for Girls
  • Xavier College


8 November 2012

Contact: Kristy Gleeson, Media Officer