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What is Southampton Science and Engineering Festival?

Southampton Science and Engineering Festival, also known as SOTSEF, is the University of Southampton's annual interdisciplinary celebration of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics). It is a 10-day period of events with online and in-person activities across the University and the city of Southampton.

The Festival takes place during British Science Week.

In 2024, Southampton Science and Engineering Festival will run from Friday 8th to Sunday 17th March. To be among the firsts to find out what's on this year, sign up to the UoS Festival mailing list or follow #SOTSEF on social media.

What is Science and Engineering Day?

Science and Engineering Day is a FREE family-friendly day of discovery and exploration, packed with hundreds of interactive activities, workshops, live shows, art performances and laboratory tours.

During the day, you can meet and interact with researchers, local community groups, public engagement professionals and artists.

This year, Science and Engineering Day will take place on Saturday 16th March, from 10:30 to 16:30, at the Highfield Campus (SO17 1BJ) and Boldrewood innovation Campus (SO16 7QF) of the University of Southampton. The event is free to attend but registration online is required.

Is Southampton Science and Engineering Festival suitable for all ages?

Yes, our programme includes a range of activities to inspire and entertain people of all ages from young children to adults. You can check the 'Age suitable for' information for each activity to find out more on this or select activities and events by age restriction in the 'What's On' page.

How accessible is Southampton Science and Engineering Festival?

We do our very best to make Southampton Science and Engineering Festival accessible to everyone whether it is online or in-person.

The website has tools to enhance contrast, by inverting colours, and increasing/decreasing font size. All the activities have been coded for accessibility and age suitability.

If you have further questions concerning accessibility, please email the UoS Festival team at

How can I participate in Festival events?

Almost all in-person events are free. You can check the 'Price' information (next to the coins icon) for each activity to find out more on this if there is a charge and what it might be for.

To avoid missing an event you want to attend, you can save it on your calendar by clicking on its date and time - this will prompt the download of an .ics file compatible with most iCalendars.

Some events will have booking information attached to them. Booking or joining instructions are clearly set out within the description on our website - just click the 'Book your ticket' button and follow the instructions.

Why do I have to book tickets for some of the events, even if they are free?

We ask everyone to book a free ticket for some live events, as it helps the UoS Festival team plan and ensure the best attendee experience.

If you register through Eventbrite you will receive an automatic confirmation email straight away, plus reminder emails 48 hours and, 2 hours and 10 minutes before an online event starts, or 7 days and 48 hours before an in-person event takes place.

This is to make sure you have all the key information in order to join the event on time. In some online cases, a reminder email is sent few minutes after the event starts to make sure no one is left behind, and in case previous emails have gone missing.

Is it OK if I book one ticket and then share my screen with others once I've joined an online event (e.g. teacher sharing screen with class)?

Yes, this is absolutely fine, but we are keen to know how many people are doing this, so for bookable events on Eventbrite we have included a question about this in the order form. This will help us to review and make enhancements for future years.

How can I provide feedback for SOTSEF events?

We kindly ask everyone attending live online events to complete a short anonymous survey at the end of each event. To anyone attending in-person events instead, we ask people to complete a short anonymous survey that will be emailed to all ticket holders via Eventbrite a day after the event.

The purpose of this is to help with planning and supporting the best possible visitor experience during the Festival, celebrating what works and help us improve future events, whether online or in-person, and your help would be greatly appreciated.

For any other feedback, please email or use our dedicated contact form.

What similar events can I join in with my family?

The UoS Festival team at the Public Engagement with Research unit organises several family-friendly events across the year.

Our annual Southampton Arts and Humanities Festival is held every November, in parallel with Being Human festival, and the programme usually includes Hands-on Humanities Day, a free family-friendly event usually taking place at Avenue Campus, with interactive hands-on activities, workshops, exhibits and talks.

For Southampton Arts and Humanities Festival we now also contribute towards related special events including Black History Month (October), UK Disability History Month (November-December) and LGBT+ History Month (February).

The UoS Festival team also has a dedicated YouTube channel with video resources and recordings of events from past Festivals.

You could also follow us @UoS_Engagement on Twitter, on Facebook, on Instagram and request to join our UoS Festival mailing list to find out more and stay up to date with the latest opportunities.

I have another question - how do I get in touch?

Please send an email to or use our dedicated contact form.