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What I teach

I teach courses in popular science writing, presentation skills, media interviews, and online engagement for scientists at universities, research institutions, funding bodies, and government agencies across the UK and in Europe.

In 2006 I co-founded SciConnect Ltd, a company that has so far trained >12,000 researchers, from PhD students to Profs, in how to share their work with wider audiences, with the goal of enhancing the contribution of science to society (and vice-versa).

It has been the best and most useful personal training course that I have attended to date...

I got a presentation award in a national meeting and I strongly believe that the skills that I gained from this workshop helped a lot for this result...

I thought I was a good communicator, however, this course has opened my eyes to new techniques...

Participant feedback comments, science communication training



I have taught undergraduate and Masters students in marine ecology and oceanography since 2000 at the University of Southampton, including creating new modules in degree programmes. I was Director of Postgraduate Taught Programmes in Ocean & Earth Science, and I have provided training for research students and early career researchers across the University.

I pioneered the now-routine digital recording of lectures at the University of Southampton, undertaking and publishing research into student use of those resources, and I introduced a microROV for marine biology fieldwork teaching through a collaboration with the Natural History Museum. I received a Vice-Chancellor's Award for Teaching in 2007, and a Vice-Chancellor's Award for Postgraduate Training in 2011.

Exceptional standard of lecturing...

This module should become a whole degree course...

Your teaching methods and clarity in your explanations I thought were excellent...

Student feedback comments, Masters marine ecology module



I was also Lead Educator in the development and delivery of a free online course (a 'MOOC' - Massive Open Online Course) about 'Exploring Our Oceans', taken by >10,000 people and 'Highly Commended' in the 'Projects' category of The Ocean Awards 2016.

I have learnt so much and been challenged to take the future of our oceans far more seriously than I ever did before...


Dr Copley is so enthusiastic and it is contagious. Such a great course. Thank you so much for opening not only my eyes but my mind as well...

Learner feedback comments, Exploring Our Oceans MOOC




Promo for Exploring Our Oceans Massive Open Online Course (MOOC)

marine science teaching

Lecturer, Deep-Sea Ecology


Lecturer, Introduction to Marine Ecology & Evolution


Lecturer, Introduction to Functional Marine Biology


Really interesting to talk to and made the lectures seem effortless, his passion really shone through...


Extremely engaging and well explained...


Amazing lecturer, very knowledgeable, hope to have more lectures with him in the future...


Genuinely inspired me...


Saw him on Blue Planet 2, just as good in real life...


Student feedback comments, 2018 lectures


Previous experience at University of Southampton:


Director of Postgraduate Taught programmes in Ocean & Earth Science


Programme Leader, MSc Oceanography degree


Programme Leader, MSc Marine Resource Management degree



Creator & co-ordinator, Structure & Dynamics of Marine Communities module


Creator & co-ordinator, MSc Key Skills module


Co-ordinator, MSc Research Projects module


Co-ordinator, Marine Biology Fieldwork Skills module


Co-ordinator, IT, Communication, Field & Lab Skills module


Co-ordinator, Coastal & Estuarine Oceanography module



MicroROV survey during an undergraduate practical class


Fieldwork tutor, Applied Oceanography & Fieldwork


Lecturer, Earth & Ocean System


Lecturer, Formation & Evolution of the Ocean Crust


Tutor, Contemporary Topics in Oceanography & Marine Biology



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