2011 Finalists

Read about the experiments conducted in 2010 and find out more about the winner Ruth Brooks and her experiment.

The winner

Name: Ruth Brooks
Experiment: Homing Snails Experiment
Occupation: Retired special needs tutor, now writer
Age: 70
Gender: Female
Location: Totnes, Devon

"For a non-scientist like me, it was great to have my research idea taken seriously. Anyone can enter - just have a go!"

Ruth is continuing to track snails in her garden whilst writing a book about her love of science and gardening.

Last Year's finalists

  • Name: Sam O'kell
  • Occupation: Croupier turned mathematician
  • Age: 36
  • Experiment: Crowd density at music gigs

"It was a really fun process, especially going to Roskilde music festival and working as part of a team."

Since taking part last year, Sam has now started a maths degree at the Open University.

  • Name: Nina Jones
  • Occupation: Student
  • Age: 18
  • Gender: Female
  • Experiment: Psychology of Facebook photos

"The whole experience was amazing. Being able to work with someone like Dr Bernie Hogan and have a glimpse at what scientists do was really exciting."

Nina received two A* and two As in her A-levels and is currently taking a gap year. She plans to teach English in Nepal before applying to University to study Politics, Philosophy and Economics.

  • Name: John Rowlands
  • Occupation: Aerial photographer
  • Age: 42
  • Experiment: Predicting noctilucent clouds

"Through So You Want to Be a Scientist I was able to put my observations to some really constructive use. I was astounded at the interest that was awoken by the experiment."

John has continued his collaboration with Prof Nick Mitchell from Bath University. Together they are analysing the data John collected from the 2011 noctilucent cloud season. John has also started a new project with the Natural Environment Research Council observing volcanic ash and sulphur dioxide in the atmosphere.

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