Secondary project briefs (ages 11+)

Bronze Awards are typically completed by students aged 11+. They complete a ten-hour project which is a perfect introduction to STEM project work. Over the course of the project, teams of students design their own investigation, record their findings, and reflect on their learnings. This process gives students a taste of what it is like to be a scientist or engineer in the real-world.

Silver Awards are typically completed by students aged 14+ over thirty hours. Project work at Silver level is designed to stretch your students and enrich their STEM studies. Students direct the project, determining the project’s aim and how they will achieve it. They carry out the project, record and analyse their results and reflect on the project and their learnings. All Silver projects are assessed by CREST assessors via our online platform.

Gold Awards are typically completed by students aged 16+ over seventy hours. Students’ projects are self-directed, longer term and immerse them in real research. At this level, we recommend students work with a mentor from their chosen STEM field of study. All Gold projects are assessed by CREST assessors via our online platform. There are more CREST approved resources that have been developed by our partners and providers specific to your region.

There are more CREST approved resources that have been developed by our partners and providers specific to your region.

Find out how to build practical CREST projects into secondary science lessons using our free teacher guidance pack. Supporting this guidance are easy-to-use, free-to-download mapping workbooks, which match individual Bronze, Silver and Gold CREST Award projects with each area of the secondary science curricula for England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. You can download and save your own copy of the relevant mapping workbook via the following links:


Northern Ireland



To browse the briefs, click the buttons below or scroll down.

2 years ago

Silver Grand Challenges

  • Text
  • Industrial
  • Hydrogen
  • Ageing
  • Challenges
  • Crest
  • Solar
  • Reduce
  • Materials
  • Methods
  • Mobility

TOP TIPS for students

TOP TIPS for students completing a Silver project 1. Understand the problem Find out more about the Industrial Strategy Grand Challenge and make sure you are clear about the problem you need to solve and the time you have. If you are developing you own project idea, discuss your ideas with your teacher or mentor. 2. Plan your approach Draw or write a plan showing how you will approach the problem, the tasks you will complete, the resources you’ll need and how long you will spend on each task. Ask your teacher or mentor for feedback on your plan. 3. Watch out! Identify any risks to health and safety or ethical concerns you think there will be. Decide how you will limit or overcome these risks. Show your risk assessment to your teacher. 4. Research Find a professional mentor by contacting your local STEM Ambassador hub: Find out more by doing some research using the suggested links on the project page. Research relevant news articles, blog posts and other media sources. Photo credit: Diana Novikova 5. Use your research to improve your plan and generate ideas Use your research to help you come up with a possible solution or to select the best experiments to use in your practical work. 6. Finalise your idea and carry out practical work Carry out any practical work including experiments, surveys, designing and making activities. When testing your ideas, make sure you make it a fair test and record all your results clearly. You could also use photos and a diary to record your project activities. 7. Concluding your project What have you found out by doing your project? Did you come across any problems, how did you overcome them? What is the impact of your project for other people, how could it be developed further? Has it changed how you feel about the Industrial Strategy Grand Challenges? 10 8. Choose the best way to communicate it Tell others about what you did. You could use a written report, a digital presentation, a blog or a poster display. Make sure you include each stage from planning through to the conclusion. Remember, science isn’t just about data. The most successful projects will demonstrate good communication skills and show original ideas that address a realworld problem. Even if things go wrong, use this to show what you have learned.

AI and Data Teach me tool Activity created by Project brief In this project you will design a new artificial intelligence tool for use in a classroom. You will need to research the use of machine learning in education and try out some tools yourself. You will then develop a concept for your teaching tool, explaining how it would use data and what tasks it would carry out. You should start by finding out how machine learning is being used in education currently and how it might be used in the future. Use the links under ‘useful resources’ as well as searching for news articles, blog posts or science magazine articles. List the tasks normally led by a teacher or other member of staff that you could develop your machine learning tool for. For example, taking a register, testing student knowledge, giving information on a topic, meeting and greeting students, assigning groups, developing a curriculum. Also think about the classroom environment: what might help you work more effectively? What extra support could computers provide, for example to those with learning difficulties? Break down these tasks into smaller steps and consider all the data that the computer will need to complete each one. Consider the risks to a computer making these decisions rather than a human. Will they be fair? What are the limits to what a machine is trusted to do? Decide on one task and develop a plan for your machine learning tool with a detailed explanation of how it will use data to make each decision. You could test some of your ideas or simple versions of them using an AI design tool such as teachable machine: Find out what students and teachers think about your ideas. Create either a simple prototype or a physical model to represent your tool along with an explanation of how it will use data to make each decision. Write up your project into a report or set of blog posts explaining how it would work and the data it would use. Things to think about • What tasks could a computer do to save teachers’ time and resources? • How can you create a system that meets the needs of all students? • Could the computer be better than a human at some of the tasks? • What skills does a human teacher have which would be hardest for a machine to replicate? • What are the risks of using data or machine learning in your system? Useful resources • • • • achable-machine Health and safety To avoid any accidents, make sure you stick to the following health and safety guidelines before getting started: • find out if any of the materials, equipment or methods are hazardous using s/Student-Safety-Sheets/ • assess the risks (think about what could go wrong and how serious it might be); • decide what you need to do to reduce any risks (such as wearing personal protective equipment, knowing how to deal with emergencies and so on); • only collect personal information that you need; • you might want to collect views and opinions anonymously; • make sure you communicate the purpose of the survey and how you will use the results; • make sure your teacher agrees with your plan and risk assessment. 11

Bronze level

Ten hour projects recommended for ages 11+. Find out more about this level and how to gain a CREST Award on the Bronze Awards page.

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Silver level

Thirty hour projects recommended for ages 14+. Find out more about this level and how to gain a CREST Award on the Silver Award page.

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Gold level

Seventy hour projects recommended for ages 16+. Find out more about this level and how to gain a CREST Award on the Gold Awards page

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