Science

Our mission is to inspire our students to joyfully and skillfully pursue scientific literacy through active inquiry as an essential part of the broader integrated curriculum at St. Paul’s School. The Science Department feels strongly that an understanding of scientific principles is essential for responsible citizenship.
 
We feel that creativity is an essential aspect of the scientific process. We encourage students to realize that rote knowledge of physical laws is secondary to the ability to design an experiment or recognize connections among phenomena. We teach a conceptual appreciation of the behavior of nature and leverage it throughout the core sequence of Physics FirstChemistry, and Biology.
 
Our department develops a respect for data and written scientific communication through laboratory exercises and project work. We use computers, fabrication facilities, the observatory, School grounds, and field trips to provide students with experiences and perspectives of the natural world and the changing abilities of humanity.
 
Enrollment in science courses is subject to permission of the department head.  
  • AI211: Introduction to Artificial Intelligence

    Fall term: 1 credit

    During the fall term, classical artificial intelligence topics such as knowledge representation; search algorithms; and learning expert systems are explored. Students read Alan Turing’s seminal 1950 paper on Computing Machinery & Intelligence and investigate definitions of intelligence. The possibilities for understanding language, thought, and consciousness are studied. Students also learn the non-procedural computer language COMMON LISP and become proficient at developing recursive problem-solving and search programs.
  • AS211, AS213: Introduction to Astronomy

    Fall or Spring Term: 1 credit

    This is a one-term course that is designed to give students an introduction to observational astronomy. In the classroom, the basic principles of astronomy are taught, including the layout of the heavens, a study of the Solar System, a history of astronomy, and the basic principles of telescopes. At the Hawley Observatory, students work independently at least one clear night a week learning the constellations, phases of the moon, and how to use a telescope to find objects that are invisible to the naked eye. Upon completion of this course, students are encouraged to take Stellar Astronomy and Galactic Astronomy.
  • AI212: Artificial Intelligence and Robotics

    Winter Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisite: While the Introduction to Artificial Intelligence course is recommended, students can take this course without having taken the fall-term course.

    During the winter students work on studying and developing Autonomous Robotic systems. The VEX Robotics and EasyC programming systems are used to create simple robotic systems. As the students progress to more complex Robotics projects the FIRST Robotics and Arduino Control systems and a variety of programming languages and sensors are used to create more complex systems. The students write papers on emerging robotics research, while working individually or in small teams, applying the principles learned earlier in the course to develop a major project of their choice.
  • AI213: Artificial Intelligence Seminar

    Spring Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisite: While the Introduction to Artificial Intelligence & Artificial Intelligence & Robotics courses are recommended, students can take this course without having taken the fall or winter course.

    During the spring students read extensively in the area of AI and philosophy to develop a deeper understanding of consciousness and intelligence. Science fiction is read (R.U.R. and I, Robot) and viewed (Blade Runner and 2001:A Space Odyssey). Writings and movies from Daniel Dennett, Douglas Hofstadter, Rodney Brooks, and Ray Kurzweil are studied. In addition students propose and then work on advanced projects as well as a final paper on their own opinions concerning the big questions of Artificial Intelligence. The class visits engineering and AI labs at MIT.
  • AS312: Stellar Astronomy

    Winter Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisite: Introduction to Astronomy

    This course builds upon the Introduction to Astronomy course and is focused upon the nature of stars in our universe as we know it. During the regularly scheduled daytime classes, students will study the sun, how stars evolve, and how spectra are used to determine the properties and components of stars. A minimum of one clear night a week will be spent at the observatory collecting observations that will be used to complement the study of stars. Full use of the Hawley Observatory telescopes is available. Additional equipment used to support student initiated projects includes digital cameras, filters, spectrometers, and sophisticated software for image processing.
  • AS313: Galactic Astronomy

    Spring Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisite:
    Introduction to Astronomy 

    This course builds upon the Introduction to Astronomy course and is focused upon the nature of galaxies in our universe as we know it. During the regularly scheduled daytime classes, students will study the variety of galactic structures in our universe and how those structures might have evolved since the Big Bang. A minimum of one clear night a week will be spent at the observatory collecting observations that will be used to complement the study of galaxies. Full use of the Hawley Observatory telescopes is available. Additional equipment used to support student initiated projects includes digital cameras, filters, and sophisticated software for image processing.
  • BI312: Embryology

    Winter Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisite:  Completed or co-enrolled in Biology
     
    This course offers students an introduction to comparative embryology—the study of different embryos and developmental stages. In this course, students will learn the basic terminology of embryology while also observing and studying the developmental process in several invertebrate and vertebrate models. Also, students will be introduced to the concept of how evolutionary changes in genes can affect phenotype, and in turn, resulting in certain similarities and differences of the developmental characters of different embryos. In the integrated lab sections of this class, students will have hands-on opportunities to examine different stages of early embryonic development in both vertebrate (chick and zebrafish) and invertebrate (nematode and mud snail) embryos. Students will compare and contrast the development of these embryos with human embryonic development, and how each of these species are related evolutionary. Also, they will learn about a few real-life teratogens that affect human embryonic development. Upon completion of this class, students will have the basic toolkit to appreciate and understand how the development of one species can shed light on how it has evolved, when compared to development of other species.
  • BI310: Biology

    Full Year: 3 credits

    Prerequisite: One year of physics and chemistry

    Biology is designed to build on the physics and chemistry knowledge base while developing an inquiring point of view toward living systems in the context of a changing environment. Laboratory experiments heighten and integrate events at the molecular, cellular, and population levels of organization. Specific topics include cell structure and function, biochemical mechanisms, genetics, evolution, systems, and ecology. Scientific thinking and communication are emphasized throughout the course.
  • BI451: Environmental Science: Earth Systems

    Fall Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisites: One year each of Biology and Chemistry

    Students will be introduced to the basic concepts that inform issues in environmental science. Core concepts include an introduction to geology and a review of basic biology and chemistry through the field of biogeochemistry. The term will end with an introduction to soil biology and environmental issues related to agriculture.
  • BI450: Human Anatomy & Physiology

    Full Year: 3 credits
    Prerequisites: One year each of Biology and Chemistry

    This is a full-year, upper-level biology course designed to provide an understanding of the structure and function of the major human organ systems.  Topics of study include neuroendocrine homeostatic control mechanisms, musculoskeletal, cardiorespiratory, digestive, immune, renal, and reproductive systems.  Disease states and adaptive physiological responses to stress, exercise, and nutrient intake are considered throughout the course.  Laboratory activities include microscopy, organs and cat dissections, case studies, and evaluation of human physiological responses.   Scientific thinking and communication are emphasized throughout the course.
  • BI451: Exercise Physiology: Biochemistry of Metabolism and Sports Nutrition

    Fall Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisite: One year each of Biology and Chemistry. (Students taking our full-year Human Anatomy and Physiology course should not enroll in this term course.)

    How do the foods we eat influence cellular metabolism, physiological health and human performance?

    This is a one-term, upper level biology course. Students investigate the biochemistry, digestion and metabolism of proteins, carbohydrates and fats. Exploration of the interaction between nutrition and exercise on health, disease, fitness training and athletic performance is emphasized. Laboratory investigations include anatomical dissections, biochemical analysis of foods, dietary assessments, and evaluation of metabolic rate during rest and exercise. Students will read original research, design experiments to address their own physiology and sports nutrition questions, and report their findings in end-of-term presentations or portfolios.
  • BI452: Exercise Physiology: Cardiorespiratory Adaptations To Exercise

    Winter Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisite: One year each of Biology and Chemistry. (Students taking our full-year Human Anatomy and Physiology course should not enroll in this term course.)

    How does exercise alter our cardiorespiratory physiology and health?

    This is a one-term, upper level biology course. Students begin the term by investigating normal cardiorespiratory function and health. This is followed by an exploration of the cardiorespiratory responses to acute exercise, as well as the physiological adaptations to chronic exercise (training) and selected stressors such as high-altitude training, aging and disease. Laboratory investigations include anatomical dissections, blood pressure, electrocardiogram and pulmonary analyses, and treadmill measurements of oxygen consumption (VO2) and anaerobic threshold. Students will research and investigate the effects of one selected stressor on cardiorespiratory function and report their findings in end-of-term presentations or portfolios.
  • BI453: Exercise Physiology: Neuromuscular Adaptations To Exercise

    Spring Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisite: One year each of Biology and Chemistry. (Students taking our full-year Human Anatomy and Physiology course should not enroll in this term course.)

    This is a one-term, upper level biology course. Students begin the term by investigating how skeletal muscle normally develops and functions. This is followed by an exploration of the neuromuscular responses and physiological adaptations to chronic exercise (resistance training) and selected stressors, including use of muscle building aids and supplements, as well changes in muscle physiology with aging and disease states. Laboratory investigations include anatomical dissections, muscle metabolism and fiber type assessment, and measurements of muscular strength, endurance and flexibility. Students will investigate, evaluate and compare reports of muscle physiology changes presented in the popular press with research published in scientific literature.
  • BI450: Molecular Biology

    Full Year: 3 credits
    Prerequisites: One year each of Biology and Chemistry

    Fall term: This is an upper-level biology course designed to provide an understanding of biochemistry with an emphasis on molecular genetics. The course begins with an introduction to essential biochemistry, followed by an exploration of the central dogma of modern genetics, DNA repair, epigenetics, molecular evolution and the origin of life, and cellular senescence.  Students also design and investigate adaptive mutations through an experimental evolution project involving bacteria.

    Winter Term: The winter term of Molecular Biology covers a variety of hot topics in molecular biology including cancer, stem cell and developmental biology, gene editing, and bioethics. Further, students continue to explore the underlying causes of adaptation of experimentally evolved bacterial populations though mutant gene sequencing. Students also investigate the genetics and treatment of cancer through cell culture experiments while developing and refining skills in molecular techniques including DNA purification, PCR, gene sequencing, and bioinformatics.


    Spring Term: The third term in the molecular sequence, Applied Genomics builds upon the students’ understanding of theory and techniques. Topics covered include genetically modified organisms (GMOs), immunology, and infectious diseases. Further, students will identify a question they want to investigate and design a research plan based on the techniques they have mastered over the course of the year. The class will review the proposals and a few projects will be selected and carried out based on merit, feasibility, and interest. The project will conclude with a finished manuscript that follows the guidelines of a peer-reviewed journal.
  • BI452: Environmental Science: Sustainable Societies

    Winter Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisites: One year each of Biology and Chemistry.

    Students will focus on human aspects of environmental science. The term will begin with a discussion of the ecological consequences of human over-population. From here, we will move towards aligning economic theory with sustainable development at a local, national, and global scale. Lastly, in the context of sustainable development we will discuss the social, technical, and ecological aspects of energy development and usage on a global scale.
  • BI453: Environmental Science: Energy and Technology

    Spring Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisites: One year each of Biology and Chemistry

    Students will begin by looking at land use history at St. Paul’s and the New England region. We will move from this historic perspective to a more modern look at forestry and land use practices throughout the region, utilizing our extensive grounds as a living laboratory. Lastly, we will spend time working through the major causes and consequences of climate change while students are designing and conducting independent research projects that should integrate the major themes of the course.
  • BI451: Marine Biology: Limnology - Freshwater Ecosystems

    Fall term: 1 credit
    Prerequisites: One year each of Biology and Chemistry

    This course investigates the freshwater ecology of lakes, ponds, stream and rivers. Using the natural resources of our campus, students will examine the different aquatic habitats that are inherent to New Hampshire. Energy flow, nutrient cycling, pollution and ecosystem stability are just some of the topics under investigation. Students will have the opportunity to wade into the waters surrounding school to sample water quality, survey invasive species populations and examine, collect and identify different species of aquatic flora and fauna. Students will also have a chance to work with aquaculture and begin to grow specimens here in the Lindsay center greenhouse. Field trips will include visits to a larger body of freshwater, water treatment facility and Trout hatchery.
  • BI452: Marine Biology: Open Ocean

    Winter Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisites: One year each of Biology and Chemistry

    This course examines the open ocean in all its vastness, depth and power. Creatures of the open ocean will be at the heart of this course including marine mammals and deep-sea inhabitants. Ocean currents, tides and water movement will be examined as we consider the role humans play in this gigantic ecosystem. Mammalian diving physiology will also be studied and as part of this course students will have the opportunity to participate in a PADI approved confined water SCUBA certification program. Dive lesson will be conducted by a PADI certified Dive Master and will take place in the Ma swimming pool.
  • BI453: Marine Biology: Coastal Biomes

    Spring Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisites: One year each of Biology and Chemistry

    This course examines the marine environments closer to shore including coral reefs, mangroves, estuaries and rocky coastlines. Students will learn how to identify fish, study the interconnectedness of the sea and the land and investigate the complex relationships found in each of these biomes. Human influence and fisheries management will be major themes throughout the term.
  • CH210: Chemistry

    Full Year: 3 credits

    This course emphasizes scientific observation and investigation. Chemical principles and concepts are introduced through laboratory experiments and are expanded in lecture and class discussion. Students learn to observe, question, test, problem solve and draw conclusions. Selected experiments require both cooperative and individual investigation. Topics include properties of matter, bonding, chemical periodicity, stoichiometry, thermochemistry, kinetics, acids and bases, equilibria, and oxidation-reduction. This course is taken prior to taking Biology.
  • CH250: Honors Chemistry

    Full Year: 3 Credits
    Prerequisite: Co-enrollment in Algebra 2H or higher and recommendation from Physics First teacher

    This course is an introductory chemistry course that will cover an expanded curriculum of Chemistry. The final grade in Honors Chemistry will consist of the term work, cumulative exams and lab practical. Topics include properties of matter, bonding, chemical periodicity, stoichiometry, thermochemistry, kinetics, equilibria, acids and bases, and oxidation-reduction. The expectations and pace of Honors Chemistry are such that by the end of this course, students will have covered the material for the SAT II subject test in chemistry. 
  • CH411: Chemistry 2: Quantitative Analysis

    Fall Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisite:
    Honors Chemistry or completion of Chemistry with a final grade of Honors or higher

    How do chemists determine how much of a substance is present in a sample of unknown composition? In this laboratory-based course students will study various methods of quantitative analysis, including titration, gravimetric analysis, and spectrophotometry to gain a better understanding of analytical chemistry.
     
  • CH412: Chemistry 2: Organic Chemistry

    Winter Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisite: Advanced Chemistry or Honors Chemistry or completion of Chemistry with a final grade of Honors or higher

    This laboratory-based course introduces students to organic nomenclature and the chemical and physical properties of fundamental functional groups including hydrocarbons, alcohols, carboxylic acids, and esters. Properties of biochemical compounds such as fats, oils, and carbohydrates will also be examined.
     
  • CH413: Chemistry 2: Reaction Rates and Equilibrium

    Spring Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisite: Honors Chemistry or completion of Chemistry with a final grade of Honors or higher

    This course expands on the basic knowledge of reaction rates and equilibrium developed in first-year chemistry. Through experimentation students will be introduced to rate laws and mechanisms as well as special applications of equilibrium including buffer solutions and solubility equilibria.
     
  • CH480: Advanced Chemistry

    Full Year: 3 credits
    Prerequisite: Successful completion of a full year of Chemistry with a grade of High Honors or a full year of Honors Chemistry with a grade of Honors or better

    Intended for those students who desire a more challenging study of chemistry, this advanced course parallels that of a college chemistry course and prepares students for the Advanced Placement examination in chemistry. The course builds on the concepts developed in Chemistry or Honors Chemistry, going into greater depth and detail. The course challenges students in the laboratory and emphasizes cooperative learning through problem solving and laboratory investigations. Areas of study in the fall term include a review of stoichiometry, atomic structure, chemical bonding, molecular geometry, and properties of matter including gas laws, intermolecular forces, and solutions. The laboratory portion of Advanced Chemistry is designed to introduce students to the techniques used in analytical chemistry.

    Areas of study in the winter term include kinetics, chemical equilibria, acid-base chemistry, solubility equilibria, and thermochemistry. Students are expected to refine their analytical techniques in the laboratory.

    Areas of study in the spring term include oxidation-reduction and thermochemistry. The Fall and Winter terms are reviewed to assist students in preparing for the Advanced Placement examination in chemistry. The year in Advanced Chemistry culminates in independent research projects on topics of the students choosing.
  • IS411: The Science of Mindfulness and Meditative Practice

    Fall Term: 1 credit

    This interdisciplinary course explores the spiritual, psychological, and medical aspects/benefits of mindfulness/mediation. The course includes research-based inquiry into case studies as well as the neurology behind the amazing benefits of mindfulness/meditation. Students will spend one day per week actually practicing. We will shift from mindfulness-based activities to guided and silent meditation from week to week. We will have at least two guest speakers from the psychosocial and medical fields. The major assessment occurs during the last two weeks of the course when each student will present a case study in which subjects used mindfulness to overcome various spiritual, psychological, and/or medical challenges. Ongoing assessment will include weekly journal entries, participation, and student led discussions based on the topic for each week.
  • IS413: Food, Environment, and Society

    Spring Term: 1 credit

    What people eat, and how they grow and acquire their food, speaks volumes about their values, health, and relationship to the land. In this course, students will investigate what the typical modern American diet and its means of production say about our society and us, looking at its historical development, its beneficial qualities, and its negative effects on human and environmental health. Students will examine the ways that farmers and advocates are working to improve our food system. Students will read and discuss a variety of literature, as well as meet farmers, share food, and get their hands dirty! Course readings may include selections by Thomas Jefferson, Upton Sinclair, John Steinbeck, Cesar Chavez, Wendell Berry, Michael Pollan, Barbara Kingsolver, Eric Schlosser, and others.
     
  • IS413: In Tune with Nature: A Literary and Scientific Study of the Natural World

    Spring Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisite: Successful completion of, or currently enrolled in Biology

    This course will be a literary and scientific study of the natural world. Looking closely at the natural world around us, journaling about our own observations, and conducting scientific field studies are the essentials of this course, as we read and discuss the work of a number of nature writers to help inspire our own writing and reflection. How can we learn to become more environmentally aware through our close observations, labwork, reading, and discussions about nature? What makes celebrated nature writers and why are they such accomplished writers? How do we model that in our own writing? What changes could the SPS community make to become a more self-sustaining community? How do we become agents for change? Students will explore these and other questions.
  • PH110: Physics First

    Full Year: 3 credits

    Physics First is designed for all entering Third Form students and forms the first of a three-year foundation series. Classical studies of motion, forces, energy, electricity, magnetism, and sound and light are coordinated with the impact that such knowledge has had in defining the modern technological world that we inhabit. Students explore the beauty and simplicity of the fundamental laws that explain our universe. Since experimentation is key to all science, great emphasis is placed on laboratory work. The use of probes linked to computers allows students to focus on the physical objectives of the experiment while collecting accurate data. In the fall term the focus is on Newton’s Laws, momentum and energy, and the interplay between forces and their impact on linear motion. Students are encouraged to ask question and create projects to seek answers while learning to work together in small groups, allowing for the free flow of creative ideas. In the winter term the course progresses to circular motion, designing an experiment to answer a self created question about force and motion, vibrations and waves (including sound) and electrostatics. Spring term finds students venturing into the study of electromagnetic fields, electrical circuits, motors, and generators, and an intensive series of investigations into the properties of light and optics. The final assessment in Physics First is a group project based on real life applications of a physical problem, with a formal poster presentation and peer review.
  • PH310: Physics

    Full Year: 3 credits
    Prerequisite: Co-enrollment in Algebra 2 or higher.
    This course is not available to students who have completed Physics First
    .

    Students investigate the physical world using both traditional and computer-based data acquisition and analysis. This course introduces students to the major topic areas of physics, focusing on conceptual understanding and analytical problem-solving techniques. Extensive laboratory explorations, performed in small groups, are used to introduce concepts, which are then reinforced through discussion and problem work. Incorporating a more mathematical approach than Physics First, Physics begins with the study of mechanics including uniform motion, Newton’s Laws, momentum, energy, circular motion and gravitation. This is followed by electrostatics, magnetism, DC circuits, and wave motion, including resonance, sound, and wave optics. The spring term concludes with the study of ray optics as students experiment with mirrors and lenses and more complex optical devices. A working knowledge of algebra is assumed.
  • PH350: Honors Physics

    Full Year: 3 credits
    Prerequisite: Co-enrollment in Precalculus or higher.
     
    This course is available to students who have taken Physics First.

    Fall Term: Mechanics. An accelerated introduction to Newtonian Mechanics for students with strong math backgrounds who are seeking a deeper understanding of their physical world. Topics include linear and projectile motion, Newton’s Laws, energy, and momentum. Laboratory exercises and classroom demonstrations are used throughout the course to solidify conceptualization and instill respect for data. Concepts are also strengthened through work in group tutorials developed specifically for students at this level as well as student-driven projects at the conclusion of the term.

    Winter Term: Electricity and Magnetism. An accelerated introduction to Electricity and Magnetism for students with strong math backgrounds who are seeking a deeper understanding of their physical world. Topics include electrostatics, circuits, magnetism, and electromagnetic induction. Laboratory exercises and classroom demonstrations are used throughout the course to solidify conceptualization and instill respect for data. Concepts are also strengthened through work in group tutorials developed specifically for students at this level as well as student-driven projects at the conclusion of the term.

    Spring Term: Extended Topics. An accelerated introduction to non-linear physical motion for students with strong math backgrounds who are seeking a deeper understanding of their physical world. Topics will build off of the previous terms of Honors Physics and will include rotational motion, simple harmonic motion, waves and light. Laboratory exercises and classroom demonstrations are used throughout the course to solidify conceptualization and instill respect for data. Concepts are also strengthened through work in group tutorials developed specifically for students at this level as well as student-driven projects at the conclusion of the term.
  • PH411: Physics 2: Light and Optics

    Fall Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisite: Completion of a year-long physics course

    Students will investigate the phenomenon of light as both a particle and a wave. They will build on their previous understanding of the electromagnetic spectrum to examine topics including wave interference, diffraction, and optics. Through hands-on inquiry experiences, data collection experiments, and project-based learning, students will learn through a variety of teaching and learning techniques.
  • PH412: Physics 2: Fluid and Thermodynamics

    Winter Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisite: Completion of a year-long physics course.

    Students will investigate the physics of fluids and heat. They will build on their previous understanding of the waves and heat to examine topics including pressure-volume-temperature relationships in fluids, the laws of thermodynamics, and the methods of heat transfer. Through hands-on inquiry experiences, data collection experiments, and project-based learning, students will learn through a variety of teaching and learning techniques.
  • PH413: Physics 2: Subatomic, Quantum, and Relativity

    Spring Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisite: Completion of a year-long physics course.

    Students will investigate a few of the branches of modern physics. They will build on their previous understanding of physics to examine the areas of subatomic physics, quantum physics, and special and general relativity. Through hands-on inquiry experiences, data collection experiments, and project-based learning, students will learn through a variety of teaching and learning techniques.
  • PH490: Advanced Physics

    Full Year: 3 credits
    Prerequisite: Successful completion of a full year of high school physics, and a full year of calculus.
    

    This is a college-level course that relies heavily on the use of calculus and builds on the concepts developed in Physics First, Physics, or Honors Physics, going into greater depth and detail. We will study Newtonian mechanics, electricity and magnetism, waves and oscillations, and a few topics in modern physics if time permits. Laboratory exercises and classroom demonstrations are used throughout the course to solidify conceptualization, build theoretical modeling skills, develop explanations, and instill respect for data. Computer programs (such as excel and python) are used for data analysis, mathematical modeling and numerical integration. Concepts are also strengthened through work in group tutorials developed specifically for students at this level. Students develop writing skills to produce journal-quality lab reports. Students who successfully complete this course are prepared to take the AP Physics C: Mechanics and the AP Physics C: Electricity and Magnetism Advanced Placement examinations in May.
  • SC211-3: Introductory Programming

    Fall, Winter, or Spring Term: 1 credit

    This course is designed to satisfy the need for a stand-alone one-term introduction to Computer Systems, Computer Applications, and Computer Programming. The JAVA Language is used to introduce the concepts of structured programming and algorithmic problem solving, although students in the course will be allowed to learn and use a different programming language, such as Python, Swift, JavaScript or C++. The JAVA language is used on the Advanced Placement Computer Science exams, as it has become the most popular introductory programming language at the college level. The course covers Top-Down and Bottom-Up development, recursive problem-solving, troubleshooting, self-documenting program development and Object-Oriented Programming. Upon completion of this course, students will understand how computers work, how to use Algorithmic Problem Solving to handle large projects, as well as how to program complete GUI (Graphical User Interface) applications.

     
  • SC221: Engineering Design

    Fall Term: 1 credit


    Students will learn about the Engineering Design process through the completion of 3 major projects as well as shorter group projects. The initial project involves designing and building a game out of wood, and then modeling it using CAD software (AutoDesk Inventor and SolidWorks). Final designs are 3d-printed. The second project involves groups creating VEX Robots designed to solve the annual VEX Robotics Challenge. Finally groups of students must design a Sea Perch-style UAV for a final competition in the School’s pool. Through these projects students will learn and practice problem-brainstorming techniques and the best-practices for successful group work. Students will use the MIT 2.007 Design and Manufacturing Course notes to learn about deterministic design and basic machine components.

    Note: This course can be taken multiple times, in order to broaden a student’s experience at solving problems using the engineering-design process. Students taking the course a second time are expected to work on more advanced projects and serve as teachers/mentors to the new students.
  • SC212: USFIRST Robotics Engineering Team

    Winter Term: 1 credit
     
    The students in this class are part of the St. Paul’s School Team 1512 FIRST Robotics team. The objective of this course is to engage the students in a challenging problem that allows them to put their group-work and deterministic-design techniques learned in the fall into practice.  Near the start of the Winter Term, specifications for the international FIRST Robotics competition will be received and studied. In January, the students will travel to the kickoff event in Manchester to learn about the new challenge. The remainder of the Winter Term will be spent designing, manufacturing, and programming the team's entry. At the end of the Winter Term, the team will enter its Robot in various regional competitions.  Essential to the course will be the completion of periodic self-reflection journals which allow the students to reassess and refine their problem-solving and engineering-design techniques.   At the end of the competitions, our students are required to write a final journal where they critically evaluate all the design solutions they saw at the competition.
     
    Based on student interest and scheduling, students in this course are also able to enter and attend local VEX Robotics competitions.

    Note: This course can be taken multiple times, in order to broaden a student’s experience at solving problems using the engineering-design process. Students taking the course a second time are expected to work on more advanced projects and serve as teachers/mentors to the new students.
  • SC233: Engineering Projects

    Spring Term: 1 credit

    Prerequisites: Completion of any one of the following: Engineering Design; USFIRST Robotics; or Artificial Intelligence and Robotics

    Note:This course can be taken multiple times, in order to broaden a student’s experience at solving problems using the engineering-design process. Students taking the course a second time are expected to work on more advanced projects and serve as teachers/mentors to the new students.

    The Spring Term course allows students to work on large-scale engineering projects to further their understanding of the engineering design process.. Students can propose software or hardware design projects. Student projects have included:
    • creating Smart-phone programs and interfacing the programs with data bases
    • designing/building new robotics systems
    • perfecting winter-term competition robots
    • designing/building a better ballet pointe shoes and basketball free-throw tutors
    • designing and building musical stairs
     

  • SC351-3: Computer Science Topics

    Spring Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisite: Successful completion of the Introductory Programming course

    Computer Science Topics is designed to continue the computer science curriculum after the introductory course (SC211).  It is a multi-threaded course, offered in multiple terms. Students can take the course multiple times, choosing a different thread each time. Each year the student takes the course, the course number will increase to reflect the advanced level of work.
    Students will choose from one of the following tracks:
     
    • Data Structures and System Design
    • Computer Logic and Machine Interfacing
    • Computer Game Programming
    • Smartphone App development and Data Base design
    • Student-proposed Software Engineering project
     
  • SC323: Science on a Sphere: Media and Dataset Creation

    Spring Term: 1 credit

    St. Paul's School's Lindsay Center for Mathematics and Science is home to one of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Science on a Sphere (SOS). Using NOAA's custom SOS software operating in an Ubuntu Linux environment, students will create datasets in collaboration with teachers from any department for use in classes or other aspects of school life. This interdisciplinary experience will also include an introduction to the system's hardware, operation, and maintenance. No prior programming experience required.
  • SC483: Applied Science and Engineering Seminar

    Spring Term: 1 credit

    [Entry to the Applied Science and Engineering Program; students are accepted by the Applied Science and Engineering Program Committee. Limit of 12 students per year.]

    Prerequisites: Physics or Chemistry, one engineering, computer science, or artificial intelligence course, and no Fourth Form math or science grade less than Honors. Alternatively, students may present a designed/created hardware or software portfolio. 

    Students accepted into this course will have secured a summer internship. A major portion of the course will involve corresponding with the secured lab to learn the skills and background knowledge needed to prepare for the internship. 
    Students learn the Python programming language, the MATLab Data Analysis application, and advanced machine-shop skills. In addition students work on their communication and writing skills by creating research presentations and posters about their internship.
  • SC491-3: Applied Science and Engineering Capstone

    Fall, Winter, or Spring Term: 1 credit
    Prerequisite: Permission of the Department Head

    The course allows an opportunity for depth and personal development for students who have shown an interest in engineering and technology at the School. Addressing the interests of each student, the program is designed to create further chances for exploration in the field, leading to the successful completion of a research internship in engineering/technology and preparing interested students to continue their engineering study at the college level and beyond.

    With an approach that consists of three parts, the honors program advances the Engineering Design curriculum already in place at the School. Fifth Form students accepted into the program will complete an Advanced Engineering course designed to prepare them to be productive members of university engineering laboratories. The program faculty at SPS will provide support for students as they seek summer internships in these college settings. The experience culminates with a Sixth Form engineering capstone project that combines weekly seminars for all participants, poster sessions for students to share their summer research, and the chance to continue that research at St. Paul’s or to pursue and complete an engineering design project of their own choice – all with faculty supervision.
     

Select a Department:

  • Photo of Julie Cepiel

    Julie Cepiel

    Science Department Head
    (603) 229-5610
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  • Photo of Ashira Anderson

    Ashira Anderson

    Chemistry Teaching Fellow
    (603) 229-5500, x6052
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  • Photo of Nicholas Babladelis

    Nicholas Babladelis

    Environmental Steward / Science Teacher
    (603) 229-4612
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  • Photo of Scott Betournay

    Scott Betournay

    Laboratory Technician
    (603) 229-4747
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    Sarah Boylan

    Teacher of Biology and Chemistry
    (603) 229-5500, ext. 6002
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  • Photo of D. Cabot

    D. Cabot

    Teacher of Science
    (603) 229-5500 x6017
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  • Photo of Xin Chan

    Xin Chan

    Teacher of Biology
    (603) 229-5500, x6025
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  • Photo of Seth Cohen

    Seth Cohen

    Teacher of Physics & Astronomy
    (603) 229-5500, ext. 6016
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  • Photo of Theresa Gerardo-Gettens

    Theresa Gerardo-Gettens

    Teacher of Biology
    (603) 229-4743
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  • Photo of Katherine Hambleton

    Katherine Hambleton

    Teacher of Biology
    (603) 229-5500, x6034
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  • Photo of Joseph Holland

    Joseph Holland

    Teacher of Physics
    (603) 229-5500, ext. 6020
  • Photo of Litzrudy Justinvil

    Litzrudy Justinvil

    Teacher of Science
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  • Photo of Meiran Liu

    Meiran Liu

    Science Teaching Fellow
    (603) 229-5500, ext. 6096
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  • Photo of Benjamin MacBride

    Benjamin MacBride

    Teacher of Mathematics & Physics
    (603) 229-5500, ext. 6036
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  • Photo of Richard Pacelli

    Richard Pacelli

    Teacher of Physics and Astronomy
    (603) 229-4746
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  • Photo of William Renauld

    William Renauld

    Teacher of Physics & Engineering
    (603) 229-5500, ext. 6039
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  • Photo of D. Reynolds

    D. Reynolds

    Teacher of Chemistry and Biology
    (603) 229-4757
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  • Photo of Nursel Riley

    Nursel Riley

    Teacher of Chemistry
    (603) 229-5500 x6000
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  • Photo of Victoria Ryder

    Victoria Ryder

    Teacher of Chemistry
    (603) 229-4751
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  • Photo of Peter Tuttle

    Peter Tuttle

    Teacher of Chemistry
    (603) 229-4754
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  • Photo of Darik Velez

    Darik Velez

    Teacher of Astronomy and Physics
    (603) 229-5500, ext. 6047
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  • Photo of Terence Wardrop

    Terence Wardrop

    Teacher of Engineering and Robotics
    (603) 229-4744
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