Biological Sciences Taster Series on Charles Darwin

Eligibility criteria apply.  APPLICATIONS ARE NOW OPEN (Deadline 5pm, 11th February) for the 2022 Biological Sciences Taster Series (online webinars with an optional visit to Cambridge at the end).

Darwin's room marked on the wall

Christ's College is where the famous biologist, naturalist and father of evolutionary biology, Charles Darwin studied. Cambridge has changed a lot since Darwin's time, but it still fosters great young scientists. Our outreach officers run an annual Year 12 Biological Sciences Taster Series. The Series takes place online through March 2022 (10, 17, 24, 31 March) and at the end there's an optional visit to Christ's for those who can get to Cambridge (8 April 2022).

APPLICATIONS ARE NOW OPEN. Please check eligibility criteria and the dates before making an application. 


This annual Taster Series is aimed at academically able students who are considering an application for Natural Sciences (Biological) at Cambridge and meet all of the criteria below:

  • you are in Year 12 (or equivalent);
  • you attend an academy, school or college that does not charge fees (to anyone);
  • you are studying Biology, Chemistry, and Maths* for A level, IB Higher Level or Scottish Higher, or equivalent;
  • you are interested in exploring biological sciences beyond the standard school curriculum.

* For students taking the IB, your Higher Level Maths must be 'Analysis and Approaches'. 


Theme and content

The annual Biological Sciences Taster Series is themed around Charles Darwin's life, work and impact, with sessions given by academics in Natural Sciences, chance to chat with current students studying science, and a tour of the College. It normally also includes a session on applications for Natural Sciences (Biological) and plenty of opportunities to ask questions.

"I enjoyed getting an insight on the weekly lives of students from students themselves."

A previous participant, 2021

Apply for the Biological Sciences Taster Series

Applications are now OPEN for the 2022 Biological Sciences Taster Series. Please ensure that you are able to attend the sessions on the dates and times stated, and that you have checked you are eligible before making an application. 


The deadline to submit an application is 5pm on Friday 11th February 2022. Late applications will not be considered.

If you're currently in Year 11 (Year 12 in Northern Ireland, S4 in Scotland) from September 2021, you can register interest here for the 2023 Biological Sciences Taster Series. 

Practical Details and Dates

The Biological Sciences Taster Series is for students only (there are no sessions for parents & guardians). Online sessions for this event will run as follows:

  • Thursday 10th March
  • Thursday 17th March
  • Thursday 24th March
  • Thursday 31st March

All sessions will commence at 16:30 and will feature an introductory session followed by three academic sessions with subject specialists.

The optional Christ's visit for Taster Series participants will be Friday 8th April 2022. Further information about this will be provided to students selected to participate in the programme. 

If you take the option to visit Christ's at the end of the series, note that visiting students are responsible for getting themselves to Cambridge, however we provide travel information and a map of the college:

If you are in (or were previously in) Care, please read about the Care Travel Fund (eligibility criteria apply).

For students travelling a long way, limited accommodation is normally available at Christ's on the night before the taster day on a first come, first served basis.


Comments from previous participants

We asked some previous participants what they would say to future students considering an application for the event. You can read what they said here.

"I loved the discussions we were able to have after the presentation. I feel as though this made us reflect on what we learnt and discuss this with a professional of the field."

A previous participant, 2021