Exploring Astronomy Education Through Astrophotography: School Contest Open For Everyone

Special topic: Astronomy Education Beyond the Classroom
5th Shaw-IAU Workshop
Wednesday Nov. 29, 2023
UTC: 6:15 p.m. - 6:25 p.m.
Friday Dec. 1, 2023
UTC: 10:45 a.m. - 10:55 a.m.

In 2023 we run a first national astrophotography contest "Take a Photo of the Night Sky" that was intended for primary and high school pupils from Serbia, whom we invited to submit one photo in teams of no more than five pupils, under the supervision of a teacher. To enable equal participation for every school child we set as a requirement that only a mobile device (phone or tablet) can be used, and we provided an online training for all registered teams on how to make a successful photo of the night sky using a mobile device. We had 184 teams in the competition, including more than 1,400 pupils and 200 teachers from all over the country. We share our experiences, hoping to promote this format of astrophotography contest as astronomy education that may reach every school child in Serbia.

About Dragana Ilić

Dragana Ilić holds the Ph.D. in astrophysics from the University of Belgrade and University of Padua. Currently she is an associated professor at the Faculty of Mathematics - University of Belgrade. She was awarded the L'Oréal-UNESCO national scholarship «For Women in Science» for 2014 and has received a Humboldt fellowship in 2020. Her research focuses on the spectroscopy of active galactic nuclei and gaseous regions around supermassive black hole. She is a member of the Society of Astronomers of Serbia and the International Astronomical Union (IAU). She was the president of IAU National Committee for Astronomy in Serbia (2014-2017). She is the coordinator for international collaboration for the Faculty of Mathematics. She organized a great number of international conferences and is particularly focused on organizing student workshops and summer practices. She is actively working on science popularization and communication, as well as in increasing the astronomy education in Serbia.