Geometric topology

Dr Joan Licata explains geometric topology, which is a branch of math which allows objects to stretch and bend, but not be cut or glued. For example, you can deform a”D” to look like an “O”, so topologists treat them as the same object, but you can’t turn either of these into an “8” without using glue. Joan works with knots, which she can model as loops of string that move around inside three-dimensional spaces. She uses numbers, polynomials, and other algebraic objects to decide which knots are the “same” and which are different. This topic has applications in other branches of mathematics, in studying DNA, and in physics: one theory describes the shape of the universe using knots! Joan can talk to your students about a range of mathematical topics to suit your class.


On campus
In school


Interactive presentation

Program duration

60 minutes (flexible)

Year group

Years 10 -12

Number of students

100 (flexible)


Weekdays excluding public holidays. Please contact us for availability throughout the rest of the year. At least 1 months’ notice required


No cost

Updated:  23 April 2017/Responsible Officer:  Science College Directors/Page Contact:  Science Web Services