Particle physics masterclasses
Our Unit organizes since 2010 three particle physics masterclasses per year. The International Masterclass, organized jointly with CERN, takes place beginning of March. Another one is held in November, during the Science Week. And a third one takes place during the Days of Women and GIrls in Science
In these actividaties, about 40 high-school students (2nd course of bachillerato) spend the day at CIEMAT to perform a hands-on exercise, analysing real data collected by the CMS experiment at the CERN's LHC collider, using computers provided by CIEMAT. Prior to the exercise, we give a seminar on particle physics, particle colliders, detectors and, most important, about what is the goal of the exercise and how it is performed. The practical hands-on session is upervised by CIEMAT researchers that participate in the CMS experiment. The masterclass is closed after a final session in which the results obtained by the students are discussed. Also, a quiz on particle physics allow the students to demonstrar what they have assimilated during the day.
As of 2020 some of these editions have been carried out via videoconference.
In addition to the usual masterclass based on data taken by the CMS experiment of the CERN LHC accelerator, as of the academic year 2021/2022 we have expanded the scope of our Masterclasses to other projects, such as MINERvA in Fermilab for a specialized class in neutrino physics. In the coming months we will add other topics to our masterclasses roster.
The agendas of the masterclasses differ slightly. The agenda of the International Masterclass, in March, and the Girl's Masterclass in February include a videoconference session with other high schools from over the world. The videoconference of the agenda of the Science Week Masterclass connects with several researchers at CERN. Besides that, the seminars and hands-on exercise are identical.
Check the different agendas in the links below.
The registration period is opened aproximately a month prior to each masterclass. Estudents must be registered by their high school teachers using a form that we will link here. Given the limited number of available positions, most likely just one or two students will be selected per high school. Therefore, teachers are recommended to list the students according to their interest in particle physics. We especially encourage women to participate in the Masterclass. Actual presence and relevance of women in science is still scarce and we firmly believe talent, curiosity and scientific motivation are not the heritage of any particular gender.