Bored online? Check out these entertaining science podcasts, YouTube series and TED talks – they’re just the right amount of science and fun.
1. StarTalk – Neil Degrasse Tyson
Astrophysicist Neil Degrasse Tyson is one of the biggest stars of science today – he’s the Director of the Hayden Planetarium in New York city and the author of more than 15 books on astrophysics and the origins of the universe. His science podcast StarTalk isn’t all astrophysics though – Tyson mixes space and science with popular culture and comedy. He frequently features scientists and entertainers as guests and his podcast has been named one of the Rolling Stones 20 top comedy podcasts.
2. The Infinite Monkey Cage – Brian Cox
Particle physicist, author and science presenter Brian Cox also mixes up popular science and comedy with his BBC Radio 4 show The Infinite Monkey Cage, co-hosted by comedian Robin Ince. Each show has a particular theme, like “apocalypse” or “time travel” and The Independent called it “a witty and irreverent look at the world of science.” Cox and Ince have even taken the show in tour.
For more science-themed entertainment, head on over to the quizzes section.
3. Brian Greene
You might have spotted physicist, mathematician and string theorist Brian Greene on an episode of The Big Bang Theory. The Founder of The World Science Festival has been featured on heaps of TV shows for his unique ability to make sense of mind-bending physics concepts like string theory. You can watch his interviews, TED talk or his chat on StarTalk.
4. Science Friday
Science Friday has been around since 1991 and has been winning awards ever since for its original and accurate coverage of the latest science news – from environmental updates to space breakthroughs and arts, culture and history as well. Their website has a huge collection of articles, video, audio and education resources.
5. The Skeptics’ Guide to the Universe
A podcast to help you debunk fake news and pseudoscience, hosted by clinical neurologist Steven Novella. With a regular “Science or Fiction” segment, The Skeptics’ Guide to the Universe is a fun way to get your critical thinking skills into gear.
6. Lisa Randall
Theoretical physics Lisa Randall is a New York Times best-selling author for her books on particle physics and the origins of the universe. If you’re curious about learning more about the mysterious physics of dark matter and extra dimensions, check out “Dark matter and the dinosaurs” or “The astounding interconnectedness of everything“.
7. Stuff You Should Know
All the Stuff You Should Know that’s probably crossed your mind at some point is explained in this podcast, from whether the 5 second rule really works, to the science behind colour blindness. An extensive list of topics means you’re sure to find some answers to those burning questions.
Check out the adjacent podcast Stuff to Blow Your Mind for a fun mix of science-related topics: from the real age of the earth to the role of teasing in human interactions.
You’ll also find heaps of answers to classic science conundrums on BrainStuff!
8. Carolyn Porco
Planetary scientist Carolyn Porco is otherwise known as Madame Saturn. She’s been a guest on Neil Degrasse Tyson’s science podcast and you can hear more about her exploration of the solar system – including the search for life beyond Earth – here and on StarTalk.
9. The Naked Scientists
The Naked Scientists are a team of scientists, doctors and communicators from the University of Cambridge whose passion is to help the general public to understand and engage with the worlds of science, tech and medicine. Find out about the latest innovations in research in just about any field and explore explanations behind phenomena like quantum mechanics – and why Blu Tack is sticky!
10. Alan Duffy
ABC host and astronomer Alan Duffy – aka “AstroDuff” – named his science podcast Cosmic Vertigo after the dizzy feeling you get thinking about the incomprehensible nature of space! With fellow physicist and co-host Amanda Bauer, the two friends chat about their love of the cosmos. He also delves into the accuracy of science fiction in his TED talk “The Science of Science Fiction”.
10. Katie Mack
Aussie astrophysicist and COSMOS columnist Katie Mack teams up with Alan Duffy in their YouTube series Pint in the Sky where they answer viewers’ burning questions about the origins of the universe.
11. Janna Levin
Physicist and astronomer Janna Levin is the author of Black Hole Blues from Outer Space and regularly tours the world chatting about black holes and chaos theory. You can watch her TED talk about the sound of the cosmic universe here.
Author: Larissa Fedunik-Hofman
Larissa is the editorial assistant for Careers with STEM and a Chemistry PhD student. Larissa’s goal is to promote public engagement with STEM through inspiring stories.