The required science courses all aim to expand your science content knowledge with the objective of helping you develop and implement methods for introducing these topics into your classroom.
NSCI 619 explores the relationship between the structure of materials, energy transduction, and the design of various communication systems. It covers the physics of optical, acoustic, thermal, electrical, and magnetic phenomena. Some of the many topics include wave physics, light, lasers, circuits, wireless systems, and magnetic fields. Coursework encompasses experimental work like examining liquid crystals and conducting materials, using a digital multimeter (DMM) to make quantitative measurements of small-scale electrical circuits, and electrical device disassembly.
NSCI 620 explores how the structure and chemical properties of molecules are related. It covers chemical bonding, thermodynamics, states of matter, surface chemistry, solubility, and acid-base chemistry. The unique molecular properties of water provide a focus to understand such diverse phenomena as surface tension, cloud formation, protein folding, detergents, thunderstorms, and water quality. This course includes experimental work such as conducting basic experiments on the properties of water in its different states, constructing a global hydrolytic cycle, and measuring the pH of various solutions.
NSCI 630 explores the interaction of electromagnetic radiation with matter using spectroscopy. Topics covered are properties and sources of light and other forms of electromagnetic radiation, spectroscopy of atoms and molecules, stellar spectroscopy, fluorescence, and spectroscopy of plant pigments. This course requires experimental work such as laser spectral analysis, research of color mapping systems, and reverse engineering of various light sources.
NSCI 640 – Energetics for Science Educators
This course explores the production and use of energy. Topics covered are thermodynamics, energy conversion and efficiency, biochemistry of energy metabolism, and global energy production. Lab exercises encompass experiments like using microencapsulated liquid crystal sheets to track energy flow, calculating equilibrium constants from thermodynamic parameters, and analyzing energy expenditure in athletic performance.
NSCI 650 explores the environmental consequences of energy production and consumption. Topics covered are the effects oxides of carbon, nitrogen, sulfur, and mercury pollution on biological systems and the methods and technologies for ameliorating and/or reducing emissions. Lab exercises include analyzing the energy flow for photosynthesis, exploring micro-combustion reactions, and conducting experiments using small-scale approaches to the chemistry and environmental impact of carbon dioxide.
NSCI 660 focuses on the processes and patterns of evolution. You study the four mechanisms of evolutionary change and understand how that change appears as adaptations and species composing the world's biodiversity.