Subject Mastery and Attainment Raising Tuition for students interested in applying to Engineering and Physical Science courses. 



STEM SMART is a Widening Participation initiative from the University of Cambridge, in association with Isaac Physics, to provide free complementary teaching and support to UK students at non-fee paying schools who: 

  • have either experienced educational disadvantage or belong to a group that is statistically less likely to progress to higher education and 
  • are considering applying to Engineering or physical science (e.g. Physics, Chemistry, earth sciences, materials science, chemical engineering) courses at university and are studying A-levels (or equivalent) in maths and science 

You do not have to be intending to apply to Cambridge to be part of this programme.


Eligible students in England, Wales and Northern Ireland will normally satisfy ALL of the following academic criteria:

  • Have achieved at least a grade 7 (A) in GCSE Maths 
  • Have achieved either at least grades 66 (BB) in double Science GCSE or grade 6 (B) in Physics and grade 6 (B) in Chemistry as separate sciences.
  • Currently be studying Maths and at least one further subject from Physics, Chemistry, and Further Maths at A level or equivalent (e.g. IB Higher Level).

Eligible students in Scotland will normally satisfy ALL of the following academic criteria:Lecture Theatre

  • Have achieved a grade A in National 5 Maths
  • Have achieved at least a grade B in each of Physics and Chemistry National 5s
  • Currently be studying Highers in Maths and at least one other of Physics or Chemistry, and be intending to study these for Advanced Higher


It is hoped around 750 A-level (or equivalent) students will join the start of the pilot, much of which will be delivered through the Isaac Physics online platform, with weekly tuition by Cambridge tutors who will mark work and give students individual feedback. It will be free to students taking part, following support and funding from the University, Colleges and the Department for Education England.

The programme begins with a one-day online launch event, followed by weekly (remote) learning and feedback, culminating with a four-day residential event in August 2022 (before the first deadline for applications to university in October). Subject specific homework and supervision will continue through to admissions tests, interviews and thereafter, Year 13 (Y14 Northern Ireland or S6 in Scotland) examinations.

How do I apply? 

To apply for the programme students should complete the online registration form. If you are studying at a school/college/or other educational institution, you will be asked to provide the name of a contact teacher at your school who we may contact to help us provide you with co-ordinated support during the programme. 

The application deadline for the programme is 31st October 2021. 

Full details on the programme and eligibility criteria can be found on the STEM SMART website


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