top of page

Staffordshire University

A fully immersive, digital online event. The 2-day ‘Explore Staffordshire University in association with Big Bang’ went virtual when the country went into lockdown in 2020.


In March 2020, the country faced a national ‘lockdown’ due to the outbreak of COVID-19, resulting in the closure of workplaces, schools and the shutdown of large events and gatherings. As a result, it was no longer possible to go ahead with the Big Bang @ Staffordshire University (formerly the Big Bang Fair West Midlands) as planned on the 16th of June 2020. With physical events no longer an option, the only way to engage students was digitally. Our challenge: How can we transform the key features of a Big Bang event into a digital form whilst keeping an engaging and local feel during a period of uncertainty?


A fully immersive, digital online event. The 2-day ‘Explore Staffordshire University in association with Big Bang’ event was designed to meet the aims of the original event: showing a wide range of STEM-based companies, industries, and educational institutions, and providing exciting STEM-based activities but all based online.

Learn by Design created a timetable of online LIVE workshops, STEM challenges, downloadable resources and LIVE Q and A sessions with employers. A mixture of pre-recorded and live sessions provided an engaging experience that was accessible on all mobile devices.


The online event provided a bank of resources for students to dip into post event and beyond. The extraordinary effects of the COVID lockdown meant the Staffordshire virtual event is remembered for being a moment where the learning must go and on and Learn by Design supported this mission with future events being blended into multiple learning experiences that now include both virtual and face to face.

Overview video:

quote marks-01.png

It was a huge undertaking to convert an on-campus activity to an online event and I am so pleased with the results and the engagement. I know that behind the registration figures there is also the family/parent learning experience which is so hard to effectively achieve. The engagement both in views but also in participation in the live events was great to see and the competition entries were also excellent with an innovative approach from the winner. The hosts were excellent and very well prepared, and I like how they adapted and added further engagement, for example featuring the Guess Who participants live and Jon Chase’s improvised Raps to suggested STEM words.

Sara Buckley, Academic Outreach Manager at Staffordshire University

quote marks-02.png
bottom of page