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These inspiring projects, developed by the British Science Association, immerse students in real research, allowing them to contribute something new to the scientific community or to a particular field of study.


CREST Gold projects allow students to conduct real, self-directed research over a minimum of 70 hours, linked to a real-world problem or question.

Where possible, students should work alongside a mentor from their chosen STEM field of study to carry out their project.

Students work independently or in small groups to hone their investigative skills, as well as their skills of communication, problem solving, creativity and reflection.

Their in-depth research and finished portfolio of evidence should contribute something new to the scientific or technological community, or to their particular field of study.


Free to use and download from the CREST online resource library.

For a small cost (from £20 per pupil), students’ work can be uploaded to the CREST online platform and assessed by an expert assessor from industry, academia or the education sector. Students whose projects meet the assessment criteria are then awarded a personalised certificate and a Gold CREST Award to celebrate their achievement. This Award is recognised and respected by universities and employers and can be used to enhance UCAS statements. Schools receiving Engage grants or Kick Start grants can get their CREST Awards for free!

Learning outcomes

  • Improve engagement, interest or enjoyment in STEM subjects

  • Improve attainment and progress in STEM subjects

  • Develop engineering employability skills

  • Improve awareness and aspirations for STEM-related study and careers

  • Challenge stereotypes by showing the diversity of disciplines, people and skills involved in engineering

Subjects and topics

    • Biology
    • Chemistry
    • Computing
    • Design and Technology
    • Engineering
    • Maths
    • Physics
    • Agriculture and food
    • Chemical engineering
    • Design, art and fashion
    • Electronics, robotics and programming
    • Energy and environment
    • Entertainment, sound and lighting
    • General engineering
    • Humanitarian aid
    • Materials, products and manufacturing
    • Medicine and healthcare
    • Space and aerospace engineering
    • Sport and fitness
    • Structures, construction and civil engineering
    • Transport

Gatsby benchmarks

The Gatsby benchmarks are a framework for good careers guidance for schools across all of England and in some areas across the rest of the UK. This experience helps your school to reach the following benchmarks:

  • Learning from career and labour market information
  • Addressing the needs of each pupil
  • Linking curriculum learning to careers

Essential skills

The essential skills every young person needs to succeed in education and their future career. Find out more at the Skills Builder Partnership. This experience builds the following skills:

  • Aiming high - the ability to set clear, tangible goals and devise a robust route to achieving them.

  • Creativity - the use of imagination and the generation of new ideas.

  • Leadership - supporting, encouraging and motivating others to achieve a shared goal.

  • Listening - the ability to listen and understand information.

  • Problem solving - the ability to find a solution to a complex situation or challenge.

  • Speaking - the oral transmission of information or ideas.

  • Staying positive - the ability to use tactics to overcome setbacks and achieve goals.

  • Teamwork - working cooperatively with others towards achieving a shared goal.

What the teachers say

We would love to read all about your time with this experience!

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The Big Ideas Programme

A STEM and enterprise programme focused on sustainability and youth empowerment - over 30,000 students nationwide have benefitted so far!

  • Ages 11 to 14
  • In-school
  • Multi-session
  • Cost applies
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Give your students the extraordinary opportunity to connect with scientists at the heart of CERN nuclear physics experiments.

  • Ages 16 to 18
  • Online
  • Flexible project work
  • Free
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I'm a Scientist, Get me out of here

I’m a Scientist is a student-led, online enrichment activity connecting students with people working in a diverse range of roles in STEM.

  • Ages 11 to 18
  • Online
  • 1 to 2 hours
  • Free

Careers resources