Hay Levels – Education at Hay Festival

The Hay Festival Schools Programme for 2017 has been announced. Please click here for more details.



Inspiring 3 minute films for A Levels

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The Hay Levels are supported by our partners, the Tata Group. Tata is a global group with 19 companies and over 60,000 employees in the UK. As proud partner of Hay Festival, you’ll find us hosting talks in the Tata Tent, debating in workshops and showcasing brand experiences throughout the ten days. You’ll see that education is built into everything we do; we invest in skills and training, not only for our employees, but also in the communities in which we work. This makes us especially proud to partner on the Hay Levels videos.

Tata partnership

On his way to speak at Hay Festival, superstar mathematician Marcus du Sautoy gave a bunch of A Level students a masterclass in the back of a minibus. It was a #lightbulbmoment. So we asked more of our inspiring university teachers to share their subjects with us direct. Here are their 3-minute #haylevels...

You can find them and hundreds more in long-form on the Hay Festival film and audio archive.

The subjects are arranged into three groups – Sciences, Humanities and Social Sciences. So if you want to know about the Big Bang, the Great War or the Quick Thaw; if you want some new ideas on Frankenstein or Immunity or Globalisation; on sex, or war or money...welcome to the Hay Levels.

Sciences      Social Sciences      Humanities      Exam Tips

The project is supported by our partners, the Tata group, and has been designed as a collaboration with Hereford Sixth Form College, celebrating its 40th anniversary this year, and the British Council, with whom Hay Festival has a Global Strategic Partnership.

We are deeply grateful to our partner Universities, and specifically to these fabulous academics. I watched them filming yesterday. These are great teachers, and their generosity and clarity are extraordinary.” Peter Florence, Director of Hay Festival
Since Tata was founded in 1868, we have continued to invest in education and skills in the communities where we work – helping to develop the next generation of scientists, mathematicians and engineers. We are delighted to sponsor Hay Festival 2014 and are particularly proud to be a leading partner of Hay-Levels. We wish you the very best of luck with your A Levels.” Dr David Landsman OBE, Executive Director of the Tata group
A great idea, with a very neat name. Talking about what’s most difficult about a subject, and communicating these ideas on short films, will allow access for students to great teachers and inspiration.” The Rt Hon David Willetts, Minister for Universities and Science
Hay Levels – what a brilliant idea. Last year I was in the back of a minibus with a bunch of 6th formers. This year it's great to have the chance to reach all those kids preparing for A-Levels and help them to put their studies into a wider picture.” Marcus du Sautoy, Simonyi Professor of the Public Understanding of Science and Professor of Mathematics, University of Oxford
Education at Hay Festival

Aarhus, European Capital of Culture 2017

Aarhus, European Capital of Culture 2017To celebrate Aarhus European Capital of Culture in 2017, we are establishing the first ever globally-recognised Children’s Literature Festival in Aarhus to engage children across the country with a nationwide literacy campaign.

We have chosen 39 children’s writers and illustrators to spend five days in Aarhus visiting schools and taking part in a city- and region-wide weekend festival towards the end of Aarhus’ Capital of Culture year, with a range of ‘in conversation’ events, debates and creative workshops. Read more here.

Hay levels - education at Hay Festival

The contributors who have made and are making films for the project are:

  • Shahidha Bari, Lecturer, Queen Mary, University of London – English
  • Craig Calhoun, Director, The London School of Economics – Economics
  • Martin Rees, Emeritus Professor of Cosmology and Astrophysics, University of Cambridge – Physics
  • Paul Cartledge, AG Leventis Professor of Greek Culture, University of Cambridge – Greek
  • Ian Goldin, Professor of Globalisation and Development and Director of the Oxford Martin School, University of Oxford – Geography
  • Abigail Rokison, Lecturer, Shakespeare Institute, University of Birmingham – English
  • Timothy Brook, Principal and Professor, St John’s College, University of British Columbia – History and Geography
  • Angie Hobbs, Professor of the Public Understanding of Philosophy, University of Sheffield – Philosophy and Theology
  • Richard Dawkins, Emeritus Fellow of New College, University of Oxford – Biology and Theology
  • Jerry Brotton, Professor of Renaissance Studies in the Department of English, Queen Mary, University of London – English and Geography
  • Nicholas Stern, President of The British Academy, IG Patel Professor of Economics and Government, London School of Economics – Economics
  • Robert Mair, Sir Kirby Laing Professor of Civil Engineering and Head of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Cambridge – Physics
  • Amanda Vickery, Professor of History, Queen Mary, University of London – History
  • Stephen Fry, Cameron Mackintosh Professor of Theatre, University of Oxford – Exam Technique
  • Marcus du Sautoy, Simonyi Professor of the Public Understanding of Science and Professor of Mathematics, University of Oxford – Mathematics
  • Tristram Hunt, Professor of History, Queen Mary, University of London – History and Politics
  • Steve Jones, Professor of Genetics, University College, London – Biology
  • Helena Kennedy, Principal of Mansfield College, University of Oxford – Law
  • Philippe Sands, Professor of Law, UCL – Law and Nazi History
  • Daniel Hahn, Director, British Centre for Literary Translation Spanish Language & Translation
  • Julian Richards, Professor of Archaeology, University of York – Anglo Saxon History
  • Simon Armitage, Professor of Creative Writing, University of Sheffield – Greek
  • Simon Blackburn, Professor of Philosophy, University of Cambridge – Philosophy
  • Simon Schama, Professor of History and History of Art, Columbia University, New York – History
  • Julia Hobsbawm, Professor of Networking, Cass Business School, London – Psychology
  • Oscar Guardiola-Rivera, Professor of History, Birkbeck College, University of London – History and Geography
  • David Lammy, Minister for the Arts in the last Labour Government and prospective Labour candidate for London Mayor – Migrations and Multiculturalism
  • Jon Gower, author of fiction and non-fiction, Fellow of the Welsh Academy – Welsh and English Literature
  • John Mullan, Professor of English, University of London – English
  • Ha-Joon Chang, Professor of Economics, University of Cambridge – Economics
  • Paul Dolan, Professor of Economics, London School of Economics – Economics and Sociology
  • Archie Brown, Emeritus Professor of Politics at the University of Oxford – Politics
  • Jon Butterworth, Professor of Physics, University College London – Physics
  • Fflur Dafydd, Senior Lecturer in English Language and Literature, Swansea University – English Literature
  • Stefan Collini, Professor of Intellectual History and English Literature, University of Cambridge – History and English Literature
  • Robin Hesketh, Research Scientist, Department of Biochemistry, University of Cambridge – Biochemistry