Science & Engineering Saturday Seminars    


Spring 2005


Online seminar registration:

*** Revised December 13, 2004 ***

February 12. Waves, Sound and Light:  k-12 Labs and Demonstrations. Lederle 1033. Chris Emery, Amherst Regional HS (retired) and Steve Murray (Holyoke schools (retired).  Student activities and teacher demonstrations dealing  with basic properties of light and sound, including shadows, reflection,  refraction, color and light wave communications. Referenced to the Massachusetts Frameworks.

March 5. Note revised date.  Energy and Chemistry. Lederle 1033. Sharon Palmer, Amherst Regional High School and STEM Ed. Energy drives all chemical reactions, and energy is an important topic of interest to most citizens.  Using simple laboratory and household materials, we can use some hands-on activities to examine the energetics involved in a variety of fun and interesting chemical reactions.  We'll construct hot and cold packs and batteries, compare the calorie contents of some foods, and look at a few other simple and fun exo- and endothermic reactions!  (Energy is a frameworks topic, as well, so your students can have some fun and learn something that impacts their daily lives, while  not straying from the "must-cover" material.)

March 19. MyDNA: Bringing the Human Genome Home toEveryone! Lederle 1033. Frieda Reichsman and Molly Hayes-Fitzgerald, Biochemistry. DNA molecules carry our genes and are packaged by proteins
to make our 46 chromosomes. Workshop participants will have the opportunity to isolate their own DNA from their cheek cells using an absolutely safe, painless method. We will use a paper cut-and-paste activity to simulate DNA fingerprinting and to make a DNA double helix and show interactive computer movies featuring 3D DNA and protein molecules that help people to visualize what happens in our cells. Participants will discover how to access resources that will help everyone learn about DNA

April 2. Estimates and the Environment. Note revised location. Marsten 211.  Sarina Ergas, Civil and Environmental Engineering. Well learn about some of the water quality problems in our region and take measurements of water pollutant concentrations in a nearby pond. We will combine these measurements with concepts in chemistry, biology and math to estimate the contributions of pollution sources to water quality problems. We will look at how these types of order of magnitude  estimates or back of the envelope calculations allow engineers to decide  quickly whether a problem is significant or a proposed solution is realistic.  

April 9. Energy Symposium. Thompson 104.  9-5. A day long symposium on energy resources and alternatives, global warming, etc. Nationally prominent speakers and panelists. Not a hands on session, but lots of important and useful information.

April 30. Weather cancellation makeup date.

May 7.  Recall for those registered for graduate credit. Hasbrouck Lab


Graduate credit option:

There is a charge of $225 for 3 Continuing Education credits plus a $30 registration fee. Teachers may obtain credit for the seminar as many terms as they wish, but only 3 credits may be applied to UMass Amherst degrees.

You must register with Continuing Education for:

Science and Engineering Saturday Seminars, 3 graduate credits. EDUC 615Y (Schedule #19407)

Register online at or by telephone 413-545-2414 during normal business hours.

The deadline for registration is Feb. 8. Late registration will entail a fee and lots of paperwork!


Questions: Mort Sternheim,, 413-545-1908.

Online seminar registration: Required for everyone.