The School of Mathematics and Statistics, in conjunction with UCD Access & Lifelong Learning and the College of Science, runs a series of extra-curricular mathematics workshops for senior cycle post-primary pupils. Designed and delivered by volunteer students and staff in the UCD School of Mathematics and Statistics, the series of Maths Sparks problem solving workshops aims to bring the wonder of mathematics to life through interactive and engaging activities and talks from mathematics graduates and professors.

Workshops are held one evening per week over a number of weeks and all pupils receive a certificate of participation from UCD. Pupils from schools designated as DEIS are invited by UCD to participate in the workshops. Other interested pupils are also welcome to attend these free workshops.

Workshop material is freely available to download as individual workshops or as complete booklets from below. These booklets might be a useful resource for teachers running a Maths Clubs in their school or for those who are teaching extra-curricular content, such as to Transition Year students. University groups may also like to utilise this resource in running 'Maths Sparks' workshops in their institution.


Workshop material

Volume 1


Game theory

Base systems

27 card trick and base 3

Graph theory

Geometric series and infinite games

Probability theory

Liar's dice and binomial random variables


Engineering and project management


Volume 2

The handshake puzzle

The birthday problem

Numbers, infinity and shapes

Astronomy mission



Volume 3

The Josephus problem


World of markets

Cryptography II


Force vectors

Logic machine



Maths Sparks Booklet

Maths Sparks Volume II

Maths Sparks Volume III

Academic Papers

Maths sparks: developing community and widening participation

Maths sparks: investigating the impact of outreach on pupil’s attitudes towards mathematics


Math Sparks is Funded by SFI

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