Exploring Habitable Worlds– Individual Online STEM Workshop

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Praxical Workshops give you the opportunity to learn science by doing science. Register here for our Exploring Habitable Worlds workshop.

About this Event

Praxical is a new learning initiative to create online workshops where everyone can actively engage in the scientific process.

For National Science Week this year Praxical is collaborating with the Australian Centre for Astrobiology. Together we are creating a 1 hour fully online, self-led workshop about the search for life on other planets. During the workshop you will get the opportunity to engage in the scientific data and skills used by astrobiologists and astronomers to search for life in the universe.

In this workshop, you’ll learn what scientists tools scientists use when looking for alien worlds and use a NASA JPL planet simulator to explore how planet and star characteristics affect the planetary conditions needed for life. You will also explore planets that break these rules, and how scientists search for “life as we don't know it”. Participants will use Project-Based Learning (PBL) to experience first-hand the rigour of the scientific process, analysing their own data and creating their own scientific conclusions by engaging in the scientific method. These PBL workshops create meaningful and authentic learning opportunities with high challenge and high support.

This workshop is approximately 1 hour long can be done at any time during Science Week.

This workshop is suitable for audiences in Year 9 or 10, or for anyone who has left school and is interested in re-engaging in science. If you are a teacher aiming to use this workshop in your classroom, click on this link. If you're an individual, please stay on this page.

Interested in another workshop?

Check out our workshops on Monitoring Air Pollution, where you will interpret 22 years of data to determine the effects of air pollution, or Conserving Endangered Species, where you an online mapping tool to learn how ecologists pick which bushland to protect.

The Voluntary Research Study

Praxical is working with a group of academics to help us better understand the science behind STEM engagement. If you are over 18 and would like to know more contact Your involvement in this research is voluntary.

1. What is the research study about?

You are invited to take part in this research study. This project will evaluate how virtual project-based learning workshops with real-world data will trigger learning and increased engagement with science. Some demographic information will be collected and participants’ answers during the workshops will be analysed to determine (1) how participants perceptions of science change throughout workshop; (2) whether participants display innate understanding of the nature of science (NOS); (3) has the learning process been triggered by the workshop. You have been invited because you expressed interest in taking part in these workshops.

2. Who is conducting this research?

The study is being carried out by the following researchers: Bronwyn Teece and Shane Hengst

Research Funder: The workshop component of this project is partly funded by Inspiring Australia, however the research component of this project has not received funding from any organisation or group.

3. Inclusion/Exclusion Criteria

Before you decide to participate in this research study, we need to ensure that it is ok for you to take part. The research study is looking recruit people who meet the following criteria:

• Are participating in the Praxical virtual workshops

• Are over 18

Participants who meet the following criteria will be excluded from the study:

• Participants who opt out

• Partisipants who are under 18

4. Do I have to take part in this research study?

Participation in any research study is voluntary. If you do not want to take part, you do not have to.

If you decide you want to take part in the research study, you will be asked to:

• Read the information carefully (ask questions if necessary);

• Complete demographic information in the registration form.

• Answer the workshop questions as normal.

5. What does participation in this research require, and are there any risks involved?

If you decide to take part in the research study, we will ask you to complete the demographic information at registration and answer the workshop questions as normal. We will analyse your responses to the questions in the workshops. The demographic information will ask about your age, gender, location and education. It should take approximately 5 minutes to complete. The workshop will ask you questions about the topic of the workshop habitable worlds |air pollution |conservation. It should take approximately 40 minutes to complete.

We don’t expect this workshop to cause any harm or discomfort, however if you experience feelings of distress as a result of participation in this study you can let the research team know and they will provide you with assistance.

6. What will happen to information about me?

Submission of the online questionnaire is an indication of your consent. By selecting the ‘I agree to participate’ ticket you are providing your permission for the research team to collect and use information about you for the research study.

The research team will store the data collected from you for this research project for:

• A minimum of 5 years after publication

The information about you will be stored in a:

• Non-identifiable format where your identify will be unknown. We will store information about you in a non-identifiable format on UNSW OneDrive data storage system Your information will only be used for the purpose of this study.

7. How and when will I find out what the results of the research study are?

The research team intend to publish and/ report the results of the research. All Information will be published in a way that will not identify you. If you would like to receive a copy of the results you can contact the research team. The chief investigator’s contact details are listed below.

8. What if I want to withdraw from the research study?

If you do consent to participate, you may withdraw at any time. You can do this by contacting the team at praxical (, if you withdraw your consent for us to receive your anonymised data from them for our research study. If you withdraw from the research, we will destroy any information that has already been collected.

The information you provide is personal information for the purposes of the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act 1998 (NSW). You have the right of access to personal information held about you by the University, the right to request correction and amendment of it, and the right to make a complaint about a breach of the Information Protection Principles as contained in the PPIP Act. Further information on how the University protects personal information is available in the UNSW Privacy Management Plan.

What if I have a complaint or any concerns about the research study?

If you have a complaint regarding any aspect of the study or the way it is being conducted, please contact the UNSW Human Ethics Coordinator:

Complaints Contact

Position Human Research Ethics Coordinator

Telephone + 61 2 9385 6222


HC Reference Number HC200497

9. What should I do if I have further questions about my involvement in the research study?

The person you may need to contact will depend on the nature of your query. If you require further information regarding this study or if you have any problems which may be related to your involvement in the study, you can contact the following member/s of the research team:

Research Team Contact

Name Bronwyn Teece

Position Chief Investigator

Telephone 0420905613


Consent Form – Participant providing own consent

Declaration by the participant

By selecting the I agree to participate ticket:

• I understand I am being asked to provide consent to participate in this research study;

• I have read the Participant Information Sheet, or it has been provided to me in a language that I understand;

• I provide my consent for the information collected about me to be used as described in section 6 of this document.

• I understand that if necessary, I can ask questions and the research team will respond to my questions.

• I freely agree to participate in this research study as described and understand that I am free to withdraw at any time during the study and withdrawal will not affect my relationship with any of the named organisations and/or research team members;

• I understand that I can download a copy of this consent form from

• I understand that the results of the research will be made available in an academic journal

This initiative is supported by Inspiring Australia as part of National Science Week

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