Loan Boxes


We provide loan boxes for schools consisting of Raspberry Pi computers, loaded with 4273π materials for teaching and learning bioinformatics. We also send volunteers into schools to demonstrate use of the material.

Materials are suitable for sixth-form level and have links to the Scottish Higher curriculum in Biology and Human Biology.

Each loan box consists of 10 Raspberry Pi computers. The only peripherals required, from the school itself, are monitors.


Loan boxes are provided free of charge and are intended for short- or medium-term use. Loan boxes are available to any state school in Scotland. Schools participating in Access for Rural Communities or Teachers Together will receive priority.

Currently, 4273π loan boxes are not available for independent schools or schools outside Scotland.

When we deliver the loan box, we would like to demonstrate its use to teachers and/or pupils. We are happy to co-lead activities with the loan box, either to whole classes or voluntary groups of pupils at your school.

Obtain a loan box!

To register your interest in borrowing a loan box, please email with “LoanBox” as the subject. In your email please include:

  • Your name and daytime telephone number
  • School name and local authority (must be in Scotland)
  • Ideal date and duration of loan
  • Alternative dates/durations
  • Whether you require 4273π project members to co-lead an activity for pupils

Due to high demand, we may not be able to match your request precisely. Please indicate as much flexibility as possible.



For funding 4273π loan boxes, we are grateful to the Access for Rural Communities project and the Admissions Department at the University of St Andrews. Loan box delivery, demonstration and activities are also supported by the University of Edinburgh.