Chemapalooza – 6/19: Molecular Gastronomy

Chemapalooza – 6/19: Molecular Gastronomy

Today students trained to become a budding chef in an emerging culinary style known as Molecular Gastronomy. Exploring how science and art can mix, students used the scientific principles of Molecular Gastronomy to create visually appealing and texturally unique foods, and explored two foodie experiments. By the end of the lesson, students became quite knowledgeable in the growing field!


Ask your student:

What is the process of thickening a liquid so it doesn’t melt in its new solid form? (Gelification)

What is the process of creating gelified pearls? (Spherification)


SITE Interns: Inquiry Workshop

SITE Interns: Inquiry Workshop

site workshop


Members of IMSA’s SITE program – Summer Internships for Tomorrow’s Educators—in a workshop on Inquiry-based learning led by IMSA’s Dr. Nicole Ross. SITE is a program piloted by IMSA’s outreach (Professional Field Services) office for the summer of 2017. It provides college education and STEM majors with training, mentorship and support, feedback, and classroom opportunities to teach hands-on, inquiry-based STEM content to students in IMSA’s summer programs. The pilot program consists of 6 interns who are in their sophomore to senior year of college. SITE interns will work and teach alongside IMSA high school students who are part of the ALLIES program, a STEM leadership and teacher development program for high school students.


Click here to learn more about our SITE Interns!

Integrated Science @ IMSA

Integrated Science @ IMSA

This uniquely IMSA program, combining two weeks of online learning followed by one week of engaging hands-on learning on campus in Aurora, explores the links between biology, chemistry, and physical science. Taught by IMSA faculty, participants delve into scientific topics including gas laws, osmosis/diffusion, and how water affects climate.
With a solid foundation from two weeks of online courses, students arrive at IMSA for a week of hands-on activities in our state-of-the-art laboratories. Students live in the residence halls, experiencing life at IMSA first hand as a student. At the conclusion of the program, students are presented with a Certificate of Completion.
This program is open to African American/Black, Latino, rural or low income students that have an interest and talent in STEM. Many program participants go on to apply and are accepted to IMSA’s three-year residential high school program.
The residential portion of this program is held at the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy, 1500 Sullivan Road, Aurora, and runs Monday through Friday, however students arrive on campus the Sunday evening prior at 6 pm.

Students must be entering 9th grade in fall 2017 and have completed a year of pre-algebra.

Science@IMSA: Systems and Signals

Science@IMSA: Systems and Signals

This program will introduce students to the basic concepts of human physiology, with an emphasis on understanding the coordination and integration of major body systems.

Students will also examine the amazing adaptive responses humans and other organisms have evolved in their physiology in response to their drive to survive.

Throughout this program, these concepts will be explored through modeling, experiments, specimen dissections, and collection and analysis of data.

Extreme Math and Science @ IMSA

Extreme Math and Science @ IMSA

Salt and pepper…..peanut butter and jelly….science and math—without math, science just wouldn’t be the same! Math can reveal and relate what scientists discover by helping them find relationships between an experiment’s hypothesis and the data that is collected.

In this program students will learn about evolutionary biology and how to use mathematical modeling to predict how populations will change over time.

Students will be learning about how intra- and inter-species interactions can help or hinder population dynamics and will use the program Vensim to mathematically model these dynamics.

Biomedical Engineering @ IMSA

Biomedical Engineering @ IMSA

Innovate through engineering and physiology! This course will begin with an introduction to the foundations of engineering, including classification and applications.

Students will focus on biomedical engineering, learning about heart physiology and differentiating between the mechanical and electrical parts of the heart as well as cardiac circulation.

They will then use biophysical principles such as Poiseuille’s equation to design their model. The next step will be building a working heart model which can pump “blood” using tubes and assorted pumping methods of their choice.

The week will culminate with the participants presenting their creations at a showcase for parents.

Micro STEM

Micro STEM

Did you know that some of the smallest things in our universe are also some of the most powerful?

From microwaves, to molecules, to circuits and code, this program will take a hands-on approach to exploring the STEM of tiny things.

Students will gain a greater understanding of the small underpinnings of everything around us. What’s behind the flip of a switch? What is life made of?  How can we make sense of the things we can’t see?

This program will harness the power of smartphones and innovative scope lenses to help students answer these questions and more!

Game Day STEM

Game Day STEM

Ever wonder about the math, engineering, and physics principles that are the foundation of sports?

Come to IMSA to examine the Science, Technology, Engineering and Math behind the many of the sports you know and love!

Students will design, build, and race a robotic swimmer, re-engineer an archer’s bow, test cycling tires and gears, and more!

Participants will leave with an understanding of how STEM concepts are harnessed to help athletes maximize their performance.

E^2: Engineering Explorations

E^2: Engineering Explorations

Design, tinker, build, test—then do it again!

Working in teams, participants will engage in hands-on activities as they explore the engineering design process through electrical, chemical, and biomedical engineering!

Students will design, build, and race boats, experiment with the chemical engineering behind solar homes, perform a calculator dissection to understand circuits from the inside out, and tackle the concept of robotic surgery as they make their own Bristlebot!