Harvard MRSEC
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Education in the Harvard MRSEC

The Center actively promotes interdisciplinary education in materials as well as research. The dedication and leadership of the faculty underscore our commitment to help pre-college students discover the excitement of scientific inquiry, develop new methods of teaching science and assist teachers, provide undergraduates with their first taste of real research, and prove the value of interdisciplinary teamwork to the nation's future materials scientists and engineers.
  • Pre-College Activities
    Center faculty participate in Project TEACH (The Educational Activities of Cambridge-Harvard). Coordinated with the Cambridge Public Schools, the purpose of the program is to interest students early in college. Each seventh-grade class from the Cambridge Public Schools spends a day at Harvard where they receive information about college admission, meet with former Cambridge students new in college, learn first-hand about undergraduate life, and are exposed to critical thinking drawn from familiar examples in science and engineering by MRSEC faculty. The TEACH program conducted with assistance from an early awareness coordinator and a team of undergraduates supported with funds from Harvard College.
  • Outreach to Teachers and Research Experience for Teachers (RET)



  • Graduate Activities
    A popular and successful innovation of the Center is an academic course entitled Materials Chemistry and Physics. Designed in 1994 by Ehrenreich (MRSEC Chairman at the time), this integrated survey course is for graduate students with undergraduate concentrations in chemistry, engineering, or physics. During the 2000 spring semester sixteen faculty from the Center covered four topics: Soft Condensed Matter, Micromechanical Systems, Biological Systems, and Nanostructures. E. Kaxiras was the course head and M. J. Aziz, F. Spaepen, and H. A. Stone served as coordinators. This course is taught every other spring semester.
    Many graduate and undergraduate courses make use of the Shared Experimental Facilities including the courses Engineering Design Projects, Introduction to the Mechanics of Solids, Advanced Laboratory in Applied Physics, and Experimental Physical Chemistry. MRSEC faculty and technical staff provide short courses on experimental techniques such as Rutherford backscattering/ion beam analysis and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. In the spring of 2001 a short course is planned on electron microscopy by our senior staff scientist MoberlyChan.

Last Modified February 1, 2001