The Insight into Electronics initiative provides self-paced, interactive activities to young people with a hands-on introduction to microcontrollers, Electronics and programming.

In collaboration with Aston University, and with support from our sponsor onsemi this year, Insight into Electronics is designed for sixth formers and KS4/S4 pupils interested in Engineering, Electronics and Computer Science. It will provide a fascinating insight into these technologies, for those thinking about studying these subjects at college or university.

Register your interest

We have a limited supply of Arduino (Microcontroller) kits available, free of charge, to state-funded schools in POLAR4 quintile 1&2 regions. To find out if your school is within one of these regions, please visit OfS website and search your postcode. If you would like to receive a set of 5 kits, and your school meets our eligibility criteria, please sign up here.

If your school isn’t within a POLAR4 quintile 1 or 2 areas, but you’re interested in distributing kits to your pupils, please contact us at [email protected] to be added to our waiting list.

If you’re an individual UK student aged 14-18, please register your interest here.

If you’re taking part in the Girls into Electronics programme, you’ll receive an Arduino kit and have the opportunity to try the activities at your event.

The Insight into Electronics guide and videos can be found below.

Getting Started

The following video introduces the kit and covers everything you need to know to get started with programming and uploading your own code to the board.

The extension video below serves as a guide for creating your own projects using the kit, showing the design procedure of a spirit level program using the accelerometer and OLED display on the board. Click here to download the code needed for the level meter

Feedback from recipients of the ‘Insight into Electronics’ kit

“Truly thanks a lot for the Arduino, as it really helped me delve further into Electronics through the aid of the kit. I would otherwise normally not have been able to access such technology.”

“The online resources were brilliant at walking me through step by step on the capabilities of the kit. Very logical and more importantly helpful.”

“I love that a little kit has inspired me to get into microelectronics and much more.”

“I now want a career involving Electronics!

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it really free – is there a catch?

It’s really free and there’s no catch! Complete the course in your own time and there’s no need to return the board.

What happens if the Arduino doesn’t work – who do I contact?

Please email [email protected].

Where can I purchase additional resources and components?

Search for “Arduino kit” on the Internet and you’ll find many pre-made kits containing common electronic components.

The guide and videos look good but before I start, I was wondering whether the code that was running on the board when I received it was available somewhere?

Details of the code and how to download, can be found here.

Do you ship outside the UK?

No, the course is limited to UK residents only.

If I need more help understanding how to programme the Arduino, who can I ask?

Please email [email protected].

Where can I find out more about projects using the Arduino?

A good place to start is the Arduino project hub, via this link.

What do I need to support this project?

You will need a PC, Mac or laptop using Windows, Linux, or Mac OS X. The Arduino software is not easily compatible with the Chromebook operating system.

Why doesn’t my Arduino work with some of the experiments?

We have released a new version of the UKESF Sixth Formers Arduino library (v2.0.2) which will now work with both old and new Grove kits and their temperature and humidity sensors. Instructions on finding out which sensor model you have are included in the Guide on p. 11. Please download the new version of the library from the Library Manager by opening the Arduino software and navigating to Tools à Library Manager à and search for “ukesf”

Project Background

Many thanks to the Scotland 5G Centre for their support in launching this initiative in 2021. Also thanks to Imagination (2022) and onsemi (2023) for funding the programme.