Petnica Science Center


Nikola Božić
Tel: +38114251180
Address: PO Box 6, 14104 Valjevo, Serbia

Activities: astronomy, physics, electronics, robotics, computer sciences, mathematic, biology, chemistry, biomedicine, geo sciences, archaeology, psychology, history, linguistics, anthropology, design

Brief description of activities:
Petnica Science Center is the biggest and the oldest independent nonprofit organization for extracurricular, informal science education in South Eastern Europe. Since 1982. Petnica has organized more than 3000 programs (seminars, workshops, research camps…) for nearly 50,000 students and science teachers in 15 disciplines of science, technology and humanities.
Majority of programs are designed for secondary-school students although there are a lot of programs for primary-school pupils, university students and science teachers. Attendants of regular Petnica programs are coming from all countries of former Yugoslavia and all these courses are being realized in Serbian language.
However, Petnica once a year organizes programs in English, like PI – Petnica international, for international participants. During 15 day in July and August every year students fro 17 to 21 can try to plan and realize real scientific project in one of 15 disciplines (Astronomy, Physics, Electronic, Computing, Mathematics, Biology, Molecular Biomedicine, Chemistry, Geology, Geography, Archaeology, History, Linguistics, and Psychology).
Petnica Centre has functional and complex facilities in the village Petnica near Valjevo (West Serbia). There are fully equipped boarding facilities (150-bed Dormitory plus Restaurant), various types of classrooms, laboratories, a big and multifunctional library with a carefully designed Teaching Resource Centre, etc.
Students and teachers who participate at some of PSC’s programs have access to a rich Library (40,000 books and journals, and computer database with thousands of electronic journals and books), Teacher Resource Centre with specific training capacities. There are also about 65 computers dispersed through PSC’s facilities, which are accessible 24-hours a day, and laboratories and professional workshops of different types and functions. PSC is member of National Academic Internet Network (AMRES).
For many years the PSC has carefully collected various types of useful teaching equipment, especially research-grade equipment that could be used for students’ individual projects and research activities. So, we can say that some of the PSC’s labs are equipped much better than the majority of Serbian schools, but we must be aware that the level of equipment in Serbian schools are far, far from EU standards.

Special international programs:

Petnica International Science Summer School (from now on PI, short for Petnica International) is a program whose aim is to enable young scientists to practice scientific research by working on their own research projects and communicate their results and ideas. Students also have a chance to attend various theoretical lectures and laboratory exercises, learn how to use some important software packages and experience work in the field.
PI has a variety of subjects to offer that give the opportunity to explore a range of topics and disciplines. Participants will attend daily lectures and classroom sessions in natural, technical and social sciences. In addition, each participant will be engaged in a group project of his choosing from those offered in this years’ PI curriculum. These projects are described later in the text – or you can jump to that part right away!
Other activities during PI include obtaining specific skills, usually related to computer software, and, of course, sport activities, social events and excursions.