Science and nature courses in London

Look to the stars or stay closer to home with a wide range of topical and specialist short courses on subjects including astronomy, evolution, ecosystems and genetics that are ideal for anyone curious about our planet and what lies beyond it.

Read City Lit tutor Brenna Boyle's guide to London's diverse wildlife.

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  1. Image by natasssssa from Pixabay

    Tree talk and walk: Regent's Park

    Weekend
    Course Date: Sat 4 Apr 2020
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    A look at some magnificent trees and how to identify them. With a morning session at City Lit and an afternoon tree walk in Regent’s Park.
    Full fee: £59.00
    Senior fee: £47.00
    Concession: £30.00

  2. Astronomy at the UCL observatory, Mill Hill

    Course Date: Mon 20 Apr 2020
    Location on this date: OS - Off Site
    An intensive course with unique access to the facilities of the UCL Observatory, including practical experiments and solar observations. Learn how stars live and die, the characteristics of the variety of planets that orbit them and discover the mysteries of Dark Matter and Dark Energy. Tutors: UCL staff including Dr Francisco Diego.
    Full fee: £259.00
    Senior fee: £207.00
    Concession: £158.00

  3. Exploring the quantum world

    Evening
    Course Date: Tue 21 Apr 2020
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Ever wondered what quantum theory is? Are you baffled by relativity? Learn about the interpretations of quantum physics and what it means for our conception of reality.



    Radmila Topalovic holds a degree in Physics with Astrophysics and a PhD in Astrochemistry. She has taught physics, maths and astronomy for almost ten years, and is particularly passionate about quantum physics and astrobiology. She is a former astronomer at the Royal Observatory Greenwich.
    Full fee: £189.00
    Senior fee: £189.00
    Concession: £83.00

  4. Photo by Karl Bewick on Unsplash

    Tree talk and walk: the Square Mile

    Weekend
    Course Date: Sat 25 Apr 2020
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    A look at some magnificent trees and how to identify them. With a morning session at City Lit and an afternoon tree walk in The Square Mile.
    Full fee: £59.00
    Senior fee: £47.00
    Concession: £30.00

  5. Geology and London

    Weekend
    Course Date: Sun 26 Apr 2020
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Explore how the geology below greater London has shaped its landscapes, infrastructure and built environment, making it such a fascinating and visually diverse city; look at stone types and their effects on the buildings around us.
    Full fee: £59.00
    Senior fee: £47.00
    Concession: £30.00

  6. Stay safe online

    Evening
    Course Date: Tue 28 Apr 2020 (and 1 other date)
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    What does identify theft entail? What risks do you run? Learn how to protect yourself from identify theft on this course.
    Full fee: £39.00
    Senior fee: £39.00
    Concession: £39.00

  7. Introduction to machine learning

    Evening
    Course Date: Tue 28 Apr 2020 (and 1 other date)
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    One of the great advances in technology is that machines can learn without humans teaching them explicit rules – e.g. letting machines train on samples of speech allows Siri to recognise your commands. Machine learning is a large part of artificial intelligence, and a mystery to most of us. This practical course teaches you how to program learning algorithms in Python. We will cover fundamentals of classification, natural language processing, financial predictions and much more. You will learn elements of data mining, how to choose a learning algorithm, and how to tweak parameters of the algorithm. We will briefly cover the theory behind the algorithms, so some maths knowledge is useful, but not required. To enrol, you must have experience with Python or a similar programming language, e.g. have taken City Lit’s Introduction to Python or Introduction to R programming course.
    Full fee: £249.00
    Senior fee: £249.00
    Concession: £152.00

  8. Further cosmology

    Evening
    Course Date: Thu 30 Apr 2020
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Do you know a bit about cosmology and want to know more? There are intriguing results from the Planck Mission. Many people and some theorists want to know what happened before the big bang. Do we need multi-verses, parallel universes, branes, superstrings? What news from CERN? A chance to delve more deeply into this fascinating subject.
    Full fee: £89.00
    Senior fee: £89.00
    Concession: £39.00

  9. Astronomy: a gentle introduction

    Astronomy: a gentle introduction

    Weekend
    Course Date: Sun 3 May 2020
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    A leisurely walk through back garden astronomy. Learn how to find your way around the constellations, whether to buy a telescope, how to find planets and look safely at the sun. Find out why astronomy is good for you.
    Full fee: £59.00
    Senior fee: £47.00
    Concession: £30.00

  10. Introduction to artificial intelligence

    Weekend
    Course Date: Sat 9 May 2020
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Stephen Hawking and Elon Musk say it's humanity's biggest threat, but you use it every day. Learn what artificial intelligence is, what it will become, and how it works.
    Full fee: £99.00
    Senior fee: £99.00
    Concession: £60.00

  11. More botany

    Weekend
    Course Date: Sat 9 May 2020
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    This course looks more closely at plants, how they are grouped, how they are named and why it matters.The course includes visits to Lincoln’s Inn Fields to study the plants there. There is also a full day at Kew Gardens taking in the Library to see some of the treasures of their book and illustration collection and a guided walk in the gardens.



    The course runs on two Saturdays 9 and 23 May at City Lit, morning sessions in the classroom, afternoons offsite and Thursday 21 May at Kew for library and garden visit.
    Full fee: £149.00
    Senior fee: £119.00
    Concession: £75.00

  12. Physics of life

    Weekend
    Course Date: Sun 10 May 2020
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Find out why physics is the science upon which everything depends. In this course we will use basic physics concepts to understand the biological processes in living organisms, including the relatively new field of quantum biology. Radmila Topalovic holds a degree in Physics with Astrophysics and a PhD in Astrochemistry. She has taught physics, maths and astronomy for almost ten years, and is particularly passionate about quantum physics and astrobiology. Radmila was an astronomer at the Royal Observatory Greenwich, she is currently Programme Leader for Science and Engineering at Kaplan International College.
    Full fee: £59.00
    Senior fee: £47.00
    Concession: £30.00

  13. Image credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/ruthanddave/

    Sustainable urban gardening: a practical introduction at the Chelsea Physic Garden

    Course Date: Wed 13 May 2020
    Location on this date: OS - Off Site
    As more of us are concerned by the scale of the environmental crisis, this course will help you find out how to support nature in your own outdoor space. You will learn sustainable and organic gardening principles and how to think ecologically. The opportunity to explore the beautiful Chelsea Physic Garden will develop your observational and practical skills, as well as build your knowledge of plants and conservation issues.



    Tutor Louise Aspinall has an academic background in anthropology and is a passionate gardener, conservationist, and freelance educator with eight years of guiding experience at the Chelsea Physic Garden. Working with diverse groups, she highlights the vital role plants play in our lives. Using sustainable gardening practices, she teaches how to create beautiful outdoor spaces in urban settings, which attract and support biodiversity throughout the year. She is currently researching how we can better protect natural heritage and the health benefits of giving space to nature in cities. .
    Full fee: £59.00
    Senior fee: £47.00
    Concession: £30.00

  14. Genes, genomes and genetic manipulation

    Genes, genomes and genetic manipulation

    Weekend
    Course Date: Sun 17 May 2020
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Want to learn more about the biggest revolution in biomedical sciences? Genetics and DNA manipulation increasingly influence our lives. Learn about the basics of DNA technology, its uses and how it affects us.
    Full fee: £59.00
    Senior fee: £47.00
    Concession: £30.00

  15. Introduction to Cloud computing

    Course Date: Tue 26 May 2020
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Cloud computing uses the internet to provide shared computing resources on demand. Learn about the major operators in this business and how to avoid expensive hardware costs by renting what you need when you need it.
    Full fee: £49.00
    Senior fee: £39.00
    Concession: £30.00

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