HSSP Summer 2015
Course Catalog


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Arts Computer Science
Humanities Mathematics
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Arts

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A9498: Intro to Music Theory Full!
Difficulty: ***

Introduce basic concepts of Western tonal music and its application to music composition through the examination of pieces from the classical literature and practical vocal exercises. Students will learn the basics of chord progressions and melodic composition.


Prerequisites
Ability to read music and some vocal or instrumental experience.

A9516: Intro to Spoken Word
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Jackie Xu

From performance to composition, we'll practice and explore various aspects of spoken word poetry. Bring a pen/notebook and an open mind, stock up on button poetry, and get your creative juices flowing.

A9470: Improv Comedy Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Jordan Ross

Exercises and Group Collaboration. Building up to a Performance.


Prerequisites
N/A.

A9520: Stencil Art Full!
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Teasha Feldman

Learn how to draw and cut stencils. Print your designs paper, notebooks, tshirts, or anything you want.

A9521: Role-play to your leader! Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Stirling Newberry

Role is both fun and a science, used in ways which delight and challenge. we will take you on a tour by taking you on what it means to role-play by doing a character concept team effort. than we will decide which era to role-play in, as a group.


Prerequisites
None.

A9513: Gesture Drawing Full!
Difficulty: *

Learn to rapidly capture the form of a person, animal, or object. The class will focus on quick sketches of people, hands, feet, animals, and draped cloth using life and pictures for reference.

A9532: Exploring the 7 Fine Arts
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Francesca Majluf

Come learn about and experiment with "The Seven Fine Arts" (Architecture, Dance and Theater, Sculpture, Music, Painting, Literature and Poetry, Film-making). Every weekend will be something completely different that you won't want to miss out!

A9536: Acting Workshop
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Tyler Hopp

We will explore the elements of acting through scene work, exercises and improvisation.


Computer Science

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C9494: Making games with Gameblox Full!
Difficulty: **

Make small, simple games using Gameblox, an online blocks based programming environment made here at MIT. So far, users have made a wide range of games, from tower defense, to maze, and item collection games. By applying basic programming concepts, you'll make something fun that others can play online.

No previous programming experience is required.

C9551: Hands-On Introduction to Internet Technologies
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Favyen Bastani

Learn about the structure of the Internet and various applications build on top of it, while setting up servers to host your own services. We'll first look at how IP, TCP, and the domain name system provide a framework for communication across the Internet, and then dive into specific applications including the world wide web, e-mail, and SSH. At the same time, we'll explore traffic sniffing, configuring DNS records, and actually installing server software. By the end, you'll have a fully functioning web and mail server; and you'll understand how they work!

C9525: Computer Architecture Full!
Difficulty: ***

Come learn about computers from the ground up. We'll start with boolean logic and work our way up through the basics of CPU design. At the end of this course, students will have an understanding of the structure of the Beta processor used in MIT's 6.004 course. Topics will include:

* Boolean logic
* 2's complement arithmetic
* Digital circuit design
* Static and dynamic disciplines
* Finite-state machines
* Turing machines
* Assembly programming


Prerequisites
Algebra I

C9504: A Tad of CAD Full!
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Rebecca Li

In this class, learn how to make things in CAD. Computer Aided Design (CAD) is how you model 3D objects before manufacturing. We will be learning how to make drawings, parts, assemblies, and print an object YOU created in Rhinoceros, Solidworks, and Autodesk Inventor


Prerequisites
nada

C9486: Make a Website
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Brenda Zanze

Learn the basics of HTML/CSS and make your own website!!!

C9511: Python Programming (literally) Full!
Difficulty: **

Learn how to program in Python!
We will be covering the basics of
-Python syntax (logic, if statements, loops)
-How to use Python to do math quickly
- Object Oriented Programming
-Writing a game in Python

C9493: Introduction to Digital Electronics Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Alex Hanson

Digital circuits are everywhere, but how do they work? How does hardware let us run our computer programs? This course offers a hands-on introduction, from the ground up, to the technology that powers our computers, phones, cars, and nearly everything else. We will build something in every class! We will begin with transistors and build up through logic gates to more complicated circuits. By the end of the course, students will be able to design their own digital clock, basic calculator, and more!


Prerequisites
Algebra I or Pre-Algebra + Enthusiasm. This course requires ALMOST NO PREREQUISITE math or science. We will learn what (little) math we need from scratch.


Humanities

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H9472: But I'm a Real Boy!: Character and World-Building for Sci-fi and Fantasy
Difficulty: **

This class focuses on building characters and worlds that explore sci-fi and fantasy settings. For characters, we'll go over: dialogue, backstory, personality, diversity, archetypes, cliches and tropes. For world building we'll discuss topics such as: magic systems, integrating "fake science," caste systems, hierarchies, and World-Building Guides to keep track of important world details.

H9546: Last week today with Olivia Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Olivia Brode-Roger

We look at issues of the past week, any major news splashes or controversial issues and will discuss them in class.
Every week, I will choose a topic and email out on Friday for you to think about and bring your perspective to class.


Prerequisites
An open mind

H9468: A Brief Introduction to Disability Rights Activism (and Theory on the Side) Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Lydia Brown

What is disability? Who counts as disabled? How do we -- or should we or can we -- think about disability and bodily/mental difference in society? Whose bodies or brains are considered "healthy" or "normal" and whose are considered "sick," "disordered," or "abnormal" -- and why?

In this course, we will explore the concept of different types of disability -- cognitive, physical, mental, sensory, and otherwise. We will grapple with difficult, complicated questions as we move from "unsightly beggars" and "mental defectives" to "sideshow freaks" and "telethon cripples," and all the way to today's radical disability justice activism and calls for crip culture. We'll discuss stigma and shame, as well as disability pride and empowerment. We'll cover topics as diverse as reproductive justice, white supremacy, Calvinist moral principles, bioethics, labor rights, mass incarceration, and sexual violence. You will learn about the longest occupation of a federal building in U.S. protest history, cultural communities you may have never known existed, and the faces of modern-day eugenics.

We will question societal expectations of "normal" and "healthy" bodies and minds, and examine the myriad possibilities for radically reconceptualizing disabled experiences as part of the human experience. We will discuss connections between disability activism and movements for labor justice, fat acceptance, feminism, queer and trans liberation, and racial justice. Don't worry if you don't know much -- this course is meant as an introduction!

By the end of the course, you won't be an expert on disability studies or the disability rights movement or disability cultural activism. You will, however, have both a broader and deeper understanding of an incredibly diverse and dynamic social justice movement, as well as the tools to more carefully analyze and respond to public discourse and popular ideas about disability and bodily/mental difference.

Some specific topics we will cover:
- Autism and the Neurodiversity Movement
- Mad Pride and the Psychiatric Survivors Movement
- Deaf Culture and Manual Languages
- Disabled Veterans/Wounded Warriors
- Disability and Aging
- Deformity and Disfigurement


Prerequisites
An understanding and willingness to engage in some heavy topics (frequently). I provide content notes/trigger warnings in advance of material likely to be particularly disturbing so students can make informed choices.

H9537: Dreams, Dreaming, and the Unconscious
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Carol Hardick

Dreams, Dreaming and the Subconscious introduces you to cognitive sciences, thinking and memory from the perspective of the subconscious and the sleeping brain, using an interdisciplinary approach of cognitive psychology, dream science and humanities.

Movies and books include these ideas with lots of twists and turns, and bring up questions about the brain, knowledge and artificial intelligence. What’s possible and what isn’t? Can an idea be planted in a person’s mind? Can two people share a dream? Can a person’s mind be controlled? What's déjà vu? With lots of class discussion, we’ll answer these questions, and more.

As we discuss the breadth and depth of the mind, the sheer ingenuity of an individual’s ability to think and create in so many ways, (and even do it while we’re sleeping,) we open the door to understanding that vast universe we call a mind.

H9524: Let's Read Together! Freire's Pedagogy of the Oppressed Full!
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Sara Freed Sussman

Hey students! Ever get that nagging feeling that our society sees you and your friends as bank accounts into which teachers deposit information?

If so, what's going on here? And by here I mean, everywhere...

As a "teacher" for this Summer HSSP class, each week I'm going to hand the class a section of Paulo Freire's Pedagogy of the Oppressed and then I'll leave it to you to figure out what it means. I will not say more than four declarative sentences per class, though I may ask you questions...

Come aboard! There will be snacks, confusion, dismay and interesting encounters with a Book.


Prerequisites
"The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways; the point, however, is to change it."

H9530: Last week today with Olivia
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Olivia Brode-Roger

We look at issues of the past week, any major news splashes or controversial issues and will discuss them in class.
Every week, I will choose a topic and email out on Friday for you to think about and bring your perspective to class.


Prerequisites
An open mind

H9518: Book club!
Difficulty: **

Do you love to read? So do we! Come discuss books with us. We'll study a new book every week or two and meet in small groups to discuss what we've read. You'll get to read three books from the following list: Esperanza Rising, Monster, A Wrinkle in Time, and Stargirl


Prerequisites
We will be reading around 150 pages a week, so be prepared to keep up!

H9508: Rereading Childhood Favorites
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Kyle Allphin

In this class, we will reread some of our favorite childhood books and take a closer look at themes and connections that we may have missed during our first reads. Books may include "The Mysterious Benedict Society," "The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles," "Little Women," "The Phantom Tollbooth," and "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz."
Compare the mindset of the Prock in "Whangdoodles" to that of conservation activists in our world, discuss the possible implications of a more autobiographical "Little Women," and explore the symbolism of Dorothy's fellow travelers in "Wizard of Oz."
This course will be mainly reading and discussion-based, but may include other creative exercises.


Prerequisites
Students should be comfortable reading a book between each class. Also, students must be willing to engage in open-minded discussion with their peers. Students will be encouraged to think outside the box.

H9467: How to Write Character Well: Intensive Character Development for Writers and Roleplayers
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Lydia Brown

What makes characters realistic, relatable, and unique? How do your favorite writers craft truly compelling characters? In this course, YOU (yes, you!) will be challenged to delve deep into all aspects of a character persona in order to write more effective characters for your fiction. Whether your thing is text-based roleplay, novels, short stories, sudden fiction, poetic narrative, playwriting, or any other narrative medium where characters exist, this class will give you the tools and inspiration you need to develop compelling characters with depth and realism (and yes, that applies for totally non-realistic genres, too).

We'll cover topics of mechanics and writing, like the dreaded Mary Sues/Gary Stus, archetypes, and character versus plot-driven writing. But more importantly, we'll examine topics like identity formation, collective trauma, interpersonal connections, marginality, inconsistency, fragility, precarity, debility, and instability. (Don't worry if you don't know these terms; that's the point of going to a class to learn.) We'll talk about violence. We'll talk about trauma. We'll talk about emotional development. We'll talk about relationships. We'll talk about structural socio-cultural and political issues. (Because the best writing draws from what we already know about how people, communities, and societies work.)

This course will also cover opportunities and challenges with writing characters who are different from you in one or more ways, especially when the character belongs to a minority or marginalized group. (Specific topics to be addressed will include racial identity, socioeconomic class, mental and physical disability, sexual and romantic orientation, gender identity and expression, im(migration) and transience, and faith and spirituality.)

You should plan to bring a notebook and pen/pencil -- or a laptop or tablet, if that's better for you -- to each class and expect to spend time between classes on assigned exercises (reading and writing). This course will be reading, workshop, and writing intensive.


Prerequisites
- An interest in writing fiction -- any level of past experience with any kind of fiction writing is welcome! - An understanding and willingness to engage in some heavy topics (sometimes). I provide content notes/trigger warnings in advance of material likely to be particularly disturbing so students can make informed choices.

H9497: Making of the Modern Mind
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Carol Hardick

Making of the Modern Mind is the intersection of cognitive science, philosophy of mind, humanities and critical thinking.

The class introduces you to theories of learning, memory and behavior, including priming, conditioning and bias. The second part of the course shifts to group theory including identity, morality and the problem of good and evil. We review how these concepts are the result of the physiology of the brain, and how they relate to the "mind-body problem" and effect many areas from health care to education, to even being integral elements of murder trials.

Each class will have a discussion topic with questions like: Are we bodies, or do we have bodies? How much would you have to be paid to lie? Should robots have equal rights if they can think and feel?

We'll discuss famous experiments on these topics including the Milgram experiments and Rebecca Saxe and her research at MIT.

Some of the material is college level, but I make it very accessible with a lot of open class discussion. I add tips for study skills throughout the class. I hope you join us for some interesting debate!

H9517: A Brief History of Ancient Rome
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Kyle Swanson

This course will cover the entirety of Ancient Roman history, from the myth of Romulus and Remus and Rome's founding all the way through the collapse of the Roman Empire in the 5th century CE. We will cover the three periods of Roman history - the Kingdom, the Republic, and the Empire - and we will specifically focus on the infamous Julius Caesar, his assassination, and the collapse of the Roman Republic. Interspersed will be discussions of Roman culture and mythology.

H9550: A Brief History of Ancient Rome
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Kyle Swanson

This course will cover the entirety of Ancient Roman history, from the myth of Romulus and Remus and Rome's founding all the way through the collapse of the Roman Empire in the 5th century CE. We will cover the three periods of Roman history - the Kingdom, the Republic, and the Empire - and we will specifically focus on the infamous Julius Caesar, his assassination, and the collapse of the Roman Republic. Interspersed will be discussions of Roman culture and mythology.

H9527: The Sounds of the World's Languages
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Juliet Stanton

This class will provide an introduction to phonetics and phonology, two branches of theoretical linguistics concerned with sound. The main question we will be addressing is the following: why do languages sound the way they do? Topics to be covered include, but are not limited to: (i) basic articulatory phonetics, or how speech is produced; (ii) the basics of speech perception; (iii) phonological universals, how we can explain them, and what they tell us about the nature of the human language faculty. Data from a wide variety of languages will be presented and discussed.

H9548: How to Write Character Well: Intensive Character Development for Writers and Roleplayers Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Lydia Brown

What makes characters realistic, relatable, and unique? How do your favorite writers craft truly compelling characters? In this course, YOU (yes, you!) will be challenged to delve deep into all aspects of a character persona in order to write more effective characters for your fiction. Whether your thing is text-based roleplay, novels, short stories, sudden fiction, poetic narrative, playwriting, or any other narrative medium where characters exist, this class will give you the tools and inspiration you need to develop compelling characters with depth and realism (and yes, that applies for totally non-realistic genres, too).


Prerequisites
- An interest in writing fiction -- any level of past experience with any kind of fiction writing is welcome! - An understanding and willingness to engage in some heavy topics (sometimes). I provide content notes/trigger warnings in advance of material likely to be particularly disturbing so students can make informed choices.


Mathematics

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M9553: Mathematical Origami Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Crystal Wang

In this class we'll explore graph theory, combinatorics, and more through the art of origami. Learning is very much student-driven; be prepared to come up with your own conjectures and theorems from your explorations! Yay math! Yay origami!

M9506: How life hides big insight using little surprises Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Kane Hadley

A picture is worth a thousand words. You may have heard this in the past, but when has someone said a few words are worth a thousand pictures?

As you're reading this class description to find out what we'll be learning you should think about how you've had a few expected and unexpected experiences in the past, and as you remember these experiences you'll realize that while some of them you could see were happening some of them came because of something you didn't notice.

In this class we'll be looking at the experiences life doesn't always make obvious, and what impact this will have.

Have you wanted to render an entire forest on your computer? Hide a message in a message? Turn music into a picture or play a picture as music?

For this class we'll be discussing cool ways things are represented in the world:
- How you'd generate an entire forest on your computer, and even a planet if you wanted.
- DNA and its relationship to proteins.
- Encryption of passwords and messages.
- How images and music are edited.
- How an apparent bias in a study can be lying when looked at with a faulty lens
- Converting a message into an alphabet of two letters and converting it back to hide it or make it possible to transmit with simple means.
- And more.

This and more we'll examine through group discussion and hands on activities to discover how we'd approach this and how this changes the way we look at and live life.

There are no prerequisites as everything will be built up in class. Curiosity and the desire to throw spaghetti at your mental wall will be your best assets here.

M9487: Discrete Geometry Full!
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Yonah Borns-Weil

Geometry is sort of in a weird place these days. Look at a geometry paper today, and it will probably involve scary-sounding stuff like algebraic varieties, smooth manifolds, and Ricci flow. But what about lines, planes, and circles? What about all the stuff we learned in high school? Ask most contemporary mathematicians, and they will tell you that Euclidean "high school" geometry is a dead field, and all its problems can be easily solved by some fancy computer programs.

Well I'm here to tell you that those mathematicians are all silly!

Discrete (or Combinatorial) Geometry is the study of how geometric objects can exist and interact with each other given various constraints. For example, how many smaller copies of a given three-dimensional shape are needed to cover the larger version? What is the largest-area shape that can be continuously moved though an L-shaped bend with unit width? Ask these questions to any of those Euclidean geometry bashers I mentioned above, and they (and their fancy computer programs) will struggle, because in fact BOTH OF THESE PROBLEMS ARE UNSOLVED!

Needless to say, we won't solve them either, but we will learn some other pretty cool stuff. In particular, we will see:
-Whether guarding a prison is harder than guarding a fortress
-How big of a net you need to catch fish in hyperspace
-How best to pack infinitely many people into an infinitely big party
-How a world-famous mathematician got shown up by one of his students
-How a two-time Nobel laureate got shown up by a little-known Israeli materials scientist on sabbatical (who would then go on to win a Nobel prize himself)
-That higher dimensions generally screw everything up, except in the rare cases when they don't

If any of that sounds fun, come join me for a whirlwind tour of one of math's most exciting fields!


Prerequisites
High school algebra and geometry. You should also be comfortable with proofs by induction and contradiction.

M9503: Understanding Number Theory
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Ahaan Rungta

In this class, we'll delve into the very specific yet diverse subject of number theory. We'll think beyond the box of regular axioms and rules and try apply the fundamental concepts of number theory to problem-solving. If we get time, we might even talk about some advanced techniques.


Prerequisites
Basic algebra, just as solving linear equations.

M9540: The Fourier Transform
Difficulty: ****

Discovered at the dawn of the nineteenth century, the Fourier transform revolutionized mathematics, engineering, and physics forever. Classically, it converts a function of time into a function of frequency, but it was later discovered to have numerous other amazing properties, such as converting a quantum wave function of position into one of momentum, and allowing X-ray scanners to reconstruct 3D models.

We will start by applying these techniques to problems such as the wave equation, heat diffusion, Borwein integrals, and difficult sums like $$\sum_{k=1}^\infty \frac1{k^2} = \frac{\pi^2}6$$.

We will build to a discussion of Quantum Mechanics (QM) and proving Heisenberg's uncertainty principle via Fourier transforms if time permits.

Each class period will have a handout, and a lecture heavy on derivations and proofs on the board.


Prerequisites
A strong understanding of single-variable calculus (integrals, derivatives), complex numbers, linear algebra, and above all, motivation. Familiarity with differential equations will not be strictly necessary, but will be extremely helpful. Group theory also helpful, but not required by any means. This class will not be easy.

M9539: Intro to Elliptic Curves
Difficulty: ****

Elliptic Curves: They're used in cryptography, factoring large numbers, and the proof of Fermat's Last Theorem. But what is an elliptic curve? Come find out!

We will talk about finite fields, the projective plane, the group law on curves, their applications to cryptography, and we'll briefly touch on deeper theory.

Random buzzwords we almost certainly won't get to: isogenies, torsion subgroups, the trace of Frobenius and the Frobenius endomorphism, endomorphism algebras, Sato-Tate conjecture, primality proving.


Prerequisites
Knowledge of group theory required to not get totally lost, but feel free to come and get totally lost.

M9544: Lecture Series - Math
Difficulty: **
Teachers: James Koppel

Want to learn how to keep secrets from your little sister or a well-funded intelligence agency? Why 19 is a happy number, but 20 isn't? How to count to infinity, and then some? Then sign up for this whirlwind tour of math! You'll learn about something completely different each week from a series of 6 speakers.


Schedule:
7/12: "Prisoner's Dilemma," Elizabeth Proctor
7/19: "Intro to Group Theory", Andreea Bobu and Lara Booth
7/26: "Intro to Number Theory," Sam Bauman
8/2: "Infinities and Infinite-Dimensional Spaces," Yash Kothari
8/9: "Finding patterns in everyday life," Nisha Rajagopal
8/16: "Non-cooperative Games," Stirling Newberry


M9474: Real Analysis
Difficulty: ****
Teachers: Yash Kothari

This course is a primer on understanding properties of real numbers and real functions. Although studying analysis incorporates studying differential and integral calculus, we won't be going into that realm, unless so desired by you.


Prerequisites
Basic Algebra (addition, multiplication, division, and difference operations on numbers), and atleast a brief idea about functions. Nonetheless, "everything" that will be dealt with will be developed from "scratch". Enthusiasm and puzzlement, highly in demand. The trajectory of the course will be based on what you are interested in studying-- therefore, your interest determines what we study!

M9529: Numbers and Patterns
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Olivia Brode-Roger

An adventure into the world of small numbers. We will look at some simple operations and expand on them. This journey will take us through the land of combinations, binary, fractals and logic.


Prerequisites
All you need to know is how to do some simple algebra!

M9542: How life hides big insight using little surprises Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Kane Hadley

A picture is worth a thousand words. You may have heard this in the past, but when has someone said a few words are worth a thousand pictures?

As you're reading this class description to find out what we'll be learning you should think about how you've had a few expected and unexpected experiences in the past, and as you remember these experiences you'll realize that while some of them you could see were happening some of them came because of something you didn't notice.

In this class we'll be looking at the experiences life doesn't always make obvious, and what impact this will have.

Have you wanted to render an entire forest on your computer? Hide a message in a message? Turn music into a picture or play a picture as music?

For this class we'll be discussing cool ways things are represented in the world:
- How you'd generate an entire forest on your computer, and even a planet if you wanted.
- DNA and its relationship to proteins.
- Encryption of passwords and messages.
- How images and music are edited.
- How an apparent bias in a study can be lying when looked at with a faulty lens
- Converting a message into an alphabet of two letters and converting it back to hide it or make it possible to transmit with simple means.
- And more.

This and more we'll examine through group discussion and hands on activities to discover how we'd approach this and how this changes the way we look at and live life.

There are no prerequisites as everything will be built up in class. Curiosity and the desire to throw spaghetti at your mental wall will be your best assets here.

M9471: Introduction to Calculus!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Ahaan Rungta

This course will be for those who have not seen Calculus before. In this course, we will not just learn the definitions and formulas of Calculus, but also the how and the why. Calculus may seem like a dry subject but in actuality it has a lot of stories to tell and can often be the most expressive part of Mathematics. In these 7 weeks, we will understand what Calculus has to offer.


Prerequisites
Fundamental understanding of Algebra and Trigonometry.


Science

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S9523: Relational Databases Before There Were Such Things Full!
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Stirling Newberry

This is a story about the underpinnings of what we now call relational databases. It may sound fancy to remember Codd and Date, the progenitors of the relational database, are not household names. But even with these two, the story goes back hundreds of years. This is that story in the outlines, or at least a version of it, which reaches back not to Codd and Date, but to Galileo Galilei, and forward to an unknown future.


Prerequisites
the ability to use a computer

S9552: How Computers Work
Difficulty: ***

This class will explore a few concepts that are fundamental to the way computers work.

We will be beginning with logic gates (extremely fundamental) which will likely have a hands-on component.

Depending on time, interest and skill-level, we may also look briefly at other ideas like paging, Turing machines, threads, and assembly code. (We are not likely to get to all of these ideas, but we will likely get to some of them; suggestions welcome!)


Prerequisites
Some understanding of logic (True, False, And, Or, etc...) Students should come curious. I have made the class size large (30) in order to accommodate many students; students should come prepared to help each other learn so that the size works.

S9528: Introduction to Quantum Mechanics
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Grace Zhang

Being a particle in the world of Quantum Mechanics is tough.

First, you're not just a particle. You lead the double life as a particle and as a wave, or more precisely, a ripple. When you're doing your daily run up the hill, you sometimes randomly end up on the other side. Your house has multiple addresses, depending on which space you feel like being in that day. Actually, that's pretty cool, but your friends can never be certain of where you are. And then there's you, you're never certain about anything.

We are going to try to understand these troubled particles, because it turns out you and I, and the world around us, are all made up of them.

In this course, we will gain an understanding for the basic concepts of quantum mechanics and develop the mathematical tools to solve Schrodinger's equation for basic one-dimensional problems, and most importantly, gasp as physics, perhaps for the first time, completely betrays our intuition. All in good fun.


Prerequisites
Comfort with integrals, derivatives, and basic matrix operations.

S9491: The Science of Snow Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Yonah Borns-Weil

People tend to have a love-hate relationship with snow. On one hand, we love to throw it, build fortresses with it, and have school cancelled by it. On the other hand, we can definitely have too much; this past winter was a nightmare for anyone having to shovel!

But us scientists have a love-love relationship with snow! Scientists love to ask "Why?" and the subject of snow immediately gives us plenty of why's.

–"Why is snow white?"
–"Why do snowflakes sometimes sting your face when they hit you?"
–"Why does the artificial snow on ski slopes not quite feel the same?"
–"Why so snowflakes always form such perfectly symmetrical hexagonal crystals?"
–"For that matter, do snowflakes always form such perfectly symmetrical hexagonal crystals?"

In addition, we'll see tons of beautiful photographs of six sided snowflakes, three sided snowflakes, and twelve sided snowflakes (but NO four sided ones!), as well as oddities with names like "arrowhead crystals," "chandelier crystals," "capped columns," and "stellar dendrites," and will learn learn precisely how each of them forms.

Snow is really cool! (Pun intended)


Prerequisites
None

S9495: Organic Chemistry I Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: David Vaccaro

From petrol to polymers to pharmaceuticals, the science of organic chemistry is around us everywhere! In this class, we'll delve into the intricate and beautiful chemistry that underlies the synthesis and reactivity of most organic compounds. We'll build organically on top of chemical first principles learned in any high school Chem I or AP Chem course and by the end you'll come out a true organic chem master. Particular emphasis will be placed on understanding the reactivity of organic molecules, acid/base chemistry, substitution and elimination reactions, and introductory synthesis techniques and tricks.


Prerequisites
High School Intro to Chem/Chem I or AP Chemistry

S9507: Laser Physics Full!
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Anya Burkart

What exactly are lasers? How do they work and who developed them? What kinds of lasers are there and how dangerous are they? How can lasers be applied in bioscience research as well as in every day life? We will delve into all these questions and more in our study of laser physics.


Prerequisites
Physics (independent study is sufficient, especially on Maxwell's equations and waves)

S9543: Lecture Series - Research
Difficulty: **
Teachers: James Koppel

Learn about current developments across math, science, and computing! Every week, a different guest speaker will talk about their current research. Find out some of the cool things that MIT students spend their time working on.

Schedule:
7/12: "Civil Structures," Yasamin Tari
7/19: "Synchronization Inspired by Fireflies", Iva Bojic
7/26: "Skeletal Biology," Sara Elaine Strecker
8/2: "Chemistry," Sneha Shastry and Tej Shastry
8/9: "Solar Energy Conversion," Bikram Bhatia
8/16: "DNA Organization in the Nucleus," Wouter Meuleman

S9501: Heliocentrism Sounds So Passé: An Introduction to Cosmology
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Shi-Fan Chen

Alright, so you already know that the sun is not at the center of the universe, and perhaps even that there was never a center in the first place. But why is the night sky dark? How do galaxies form? How old is the universe, and what is it made of? What does it mean if space is curved? What if all you needed for a first stab at these questions was Newtonian mechanics? In this course we will attempt to answer all these questions and, if time allows, come up with some more. Along the way we will develop quantitatively precise descriptions of spacetime and its expansion, learn about the evidence for dark matter and dark energy, think about what the cosmic microwave background tells us, and even calculate how long we have before our galaxy collides with the Andromeda galaxy. The sky’s the limit.


Prerequisites
Calculus or Mechanics at the AP level. We will develop/review any background in modern physics as necessary in class.

S9484: The Science of Science Fiction
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Spencer Lane

Do you like stories about starship voyages and distant worlds? Ever wondered what it would take to build a base on the moon? Interested in the Holodeck? Droids? Warp Speed? The Matrix? Starships? Aliens? Marvin the Paranoid Android?

Then this is the class for you! This fun, lightweight course will discuss how modern science and engineering relate to things we see in our favorite Sci-Fi media. This will be a light course with no math prerequisites intended as an introduction to a variety of topics in Science and Engineering with a focus on Space.

S9482: How to physics without a calculus
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Ahaan Rungta

In this class, we will study physics and problem-solve in ways that are both non-sketchy and simple. Physics without calculus sounds improbable but it turns out the basic concepts of physics can be well-understood even without extensive mathematics. This course will focus on conceptualization but will involve problem-solving projects which requires applying mathematics to physics (correctly)! You should not take this course if you have already taken an entire AP Physics B or C course.


Prerequisites
Basically algebra and trigonometry. No calculus required.

S9485: Thermodynamics and Statistical mechanics
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Tomohiro Soejima

Thermodynamics is one of the most beautiful theory in physics. It unifies various different phenomena in the world under two fundamental laws:Energy conservation and increase of entropy. We will explore how this theory came into being, and examines its historical and scientific significance.
After that, we will talk about Statistical Mechanics, a theory that connects microscopic phenomena with macroscopic phenomena. Here we will ask fundamental questions as "What is heat?" "What is entropy?. We will also explore a bit about the relevance of quantum mechanics to statistical mechanics.
Necessary maths (calculus, probability, linear algebra) are developed as needed during the course.


Prerequisites
basis calculus

S9490: QED: The Strange Theory of Light and Matter
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Robert Jones, Henry Lin

In our opinion, Feynman’s book QED is the golden standard of popular science writing. It is the only book that we know of that explains quantum mechanics in a way that is neither superficial (as in most documentaries you see on TV) nor mathematically sophisticated. In this course, we will read QED and use it as a springboard to discuss topics in modern physics, like path integral methods, Feynman diagrams, and quantum theories of things like E&M, with more mathematical precision. By the end of the course, we will have fascinating answers to simple but deep questions like “why do objects travel in straight paths?”


Prerequisites
Calculus at the AP level. You should be able to integrate something like $$ x e^{x^2} $$. Please contact us if you are considering the course but have not taken any calculus.

S9499: 3D Modeling through 3D Printing Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Ethan Bian, Mitchell Gu

You may have heard 3D printing is the future of fabrication, but it's already more accessible than you might think! For the price of existing 2D printers, us millenials can make or buy quality 3D printers that can bring concepts to tangible reality in mere minutes. (how spoiled)
To get started, all the know-how you need is how to 3D model - the process of translating an idea in your head to computer model you can press "print" on. With this class I hope to show anyone who's ever been interested in modeling that this can be an intuitive (and fun!) process.
Tentative Plan:
Each week students will model a part that I will actually print for you to examine the next week. I'll teach skills such as creating sketches properly, extruding and revolving them, doing stress analysis, and good strategies for tackling complex parts. Projects will range from existing object replication to modular art to strength/weight efficiency maximization. Students will also have opportunities to model things of their choice, because that's what all the fun's about!


Prerequisites
A good amount of computer-literacy. No need to be a programming whiz or have used any CAD software before, just be comfortable working your way around common programs.

S9549: The Science of Science Fiction Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Spencer Lane

Do you like stories about starship voyages and distant worlds? Ever wondered what it would take to build a base on the moon? Interested in the Holodeck? Droids? Warp Speed? The Matrix? Starships? Aliens? Marvin the Paranoid Android?

Then this is the class for you! This fun, lightweight course will discuss how modern science and engineering relate to things we see in our favorite Sci-Fi media. This will be a light course with no math prerequisites intended as an introduction to a variety of topics in Science and Engineering with a focus on Space.

S9514: Introduction to Physical Science
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Jonathan Paras

Nuclear Fusion, plasmas, Magnetars, Pulsars, springs, strings, and other things. How do we understand this vast array of interesting topics. How do capacitors work? What are B, E, and H fields? Simple Harmonic Motion, nuclear fusion reactor designs from the 1970s, and an explanation of the stars. This course is designed to start with a lot of basic material at a higher level than the average high school student is used to. It is my hope that by he end we can discuss some of the coolest phenomena and physical systems where the students new found exposure can become the miracle of understanding.


Prerequisites
Basic understanding of physical science. I.e., have a conceptual understanding of waves, atoms, and forces OR a strong desire to learn. Math will be applied to taste and will range from the discussion of derivatives to brief exposures with first order differential equations.

S9547: Relational Databases Before There Were Such Things
Difficulty: ***
Teachers: Stirling Newberry

This is a story about the underpinnings of what we now call relational databases. It may sound fancy to remember Codd and Date, the progenitors of the relational database, are not household names. But even with these two, the story goes back hundreds of years. This is that story in the outlines, or at least a version of it, which reaches back not to Codd and Date, but to Galileo Galilei, and forward to an unknown future.


Prerequisites
the ability to use a computer


Miscellaneous

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X9531: Change the World: How to Develop Hardware Solutions to tackle Global Challenges
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Netia McCray

Ever thought about changing the world, but have no idea where to start?

Have you ever wondered how to turn an idea to improve the life of someone in your community or in another country into reality?

Want to spend your summer vacation learning how alongside a MIT start-up developing hardware for emerging markets?

'Change the World: How to Develop Hardware Solutions to tackle Global Challenges' is an Introductory Course for middle school and high school students who are interested in learning how to develop hardware solutions through product design and development, customer validation, rapid prototyping, and manufacturing of hardware for low income communities in the United States and abroad.

Listen to the Founder and Aspiring Founder stories of young MIT Undergraduate/Graduate Students, Social Entrepreneurs, and Tech Entrepreneurs on various topics related to launching a hardware start-up.

Participants will also have the opportunity to not only learn the basics of turning their world-changing ideas into reality through guest lectures...but will work alongside with a social start-up, Mbadika (http://mbadika.org), in developing their very own prototype DIY (do-it-yourself) kit, such as a Solar USB Charger for Mobile Devices, alongside their South African counterparts in order to introduce Sub-Saharan African youth to hardware concepts, such as using breadboards to design electronic circuits.

Interested? What are you waiting for? Sign up!

There are no course prerequisites and all levels are welcomed. :)


Prerequisites
None

X9505: Intro to Economics
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Kelsey Chan

Why are Apple products so expensive? What are the effects of monopolies in the real world? How do companies determine how much of their good to produce? Why does the price of gas fluctuate so frequently? What is unemployment, and why is it important? How does an increase in minimum wage affect the economy?

Come learn the answers to these questions in this introductory economics course! We will begin with basic microeconomics concepts and then branch off into basic macroeconomic concepts. We will read articles, listen to podcasts, and watch videos that will give you a better understanding of how the concepts covered are applied in real life.

Some specific topics we will cover include:
- Opportunity cost
- Accounting versus economic profit
- Supply and demand
- Elasticity
- Gross domestic product
- Money, stocks, and bonds
- Inflation
- Banks and the creation of money

X9483: How to Adult Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Spencer Lane

“Help, my dorm room is infested with cockroaches! What do I do?”
“Help, my car got towed and I don’t know why! What do I do?”
“Help, I have an interview tomorrow and my shirt is all wrinkled! What do I do?”
Don’t let this happen to you! As you grow up and leave home for college and beyond, there are a large number of skills you will need to learn and things you will need to be able to do for yourself. There are lots of things that your parents and family members do every day that will eventually come back to bite you if you don’t take care of them. Get a head start on learning these important life skills, before it is too late!

X9512: RPG Design and Theory
Difficulty: *

CRITICAL HIT! The big bad is vanquished by the swing of your sword or your alien laser blast. In this class, we will examine the structure of tabletop RPGs, such as Dungeons & Dragons, by playing and examining the probabilistic elements, creative structures, balance, and collaborative storytelling that comprise these games. As a final project, you will use what you learned to prototype your own unique RPG, which we will test in class.

X9492: For Foodies Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Olivia Zhao

Each week, we’ll talk about a different cultural, scientific, or historical aspect surrounding food. Topics include nutrition and human physiology, food as cultural symbols, world hunger, economics, and molecular gastronomy.

Sample a true paleo diet, visualize meals for those living in extreme poverty, use chemistry to make food, and eat fancy hors d’oeuvres! There’ll be a wide variety of information, activities, and sample foods throughout the course.

X9515: The Deception Tournament Full!
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Crystal Wang

Doubt. Alliance. Betrayal. Deceit. Can you deceive your fellow students and become the most cunning of all?

In this class, students are pit in battles of wits and skill, requiring toughness and social deftness to come out on top. Each week, we will play different social strategy games as part of a course-long tournament.

Inspired by the manga Liar Game and similar games.

X9489: Live, Laugh, Lead: Exciting Leadership Activities
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Mary Beytagh, Jenny Wei

Crossing deadly rivers of molten chocolate, escaping explosive minefields, and constructing great pyramids. Now what does all this have to do with Leadership? Come and find out…

Do you like games, teamwork, creative problem solving, or having fun? Want to know how this can help you become a better leader? Come and participate in fun interactive activities, and maybe learn a thing or two about leadership.

The Leadership Training Institute (LTI) is a high school mentoring program right here at MIT, and we will be sending mentors to lead what will surely be a jam-packed session of excitement, fun, and thoughtful conversation.


Prerequisites
Energy and positive attitude!

X9526: Economics Games
Difficulty: **

Despite my interest in Economics, I sometimes find myself bored just sitting in class listening to my professors talking for almost an hour. Likewise, I am sure that many of you can empathize with my boredom. That is why, in this course, I will keep the talking to a minimum. Instead, I will teach you only what you need to know in preparation for a series of online games related to the field of Economics. These games will cover topics ranging from America's deficit and debt issues, to even public goods.

X9488: World Changer's Think Tank Full!
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Yoo Eun Kim

Keep your coins; I want CHANGE!

Are you interested in starting your own community service project? If you want to design and implement a project that maximizes impact for your school or community, attend World Changer's Think Tank (WCTT)! WCTT has been presented in leadership and service conventions throughout the United States and will cover the following topics: brainstorming ideas, budgeting, delegating, advertising, executing, and building on your results. Participants will present their community service project proposals at the conclusion of the workshop.

What are you waiting for? Be a World Changer!

X9535: Level Design using Unreal Engine
Difficulty: **
Teachers: Tyler Hopp

Do you want to make video games for a living?In this class, you will be
developing in-depth levels with an industry-standard 3D game engine (Unreal 4), including modeling and construction,
placement and editing of objects and textures, lighting design, animation, and scripting.


Prerequisites
Experience with Unreal Engine and c++ are a plus but not necessary. A computer with a latest version of Unreal Engine 4

X9541: Change the World: How to Develop Hardware Solutions to tackle Global Challenges Full!
Difficulty: *
Teachers: Netia McCray

Ever thought about changing the world, but have no idea where to start?

Have you ever wondered how to turn an idea to improve the life of someone in your community or in another country into reality?

Want to spend your summer vacation learning how alongside a MIT start-up developing hardware for emerging markets?

'Change the World: How to Develop Hardware Solutions to tackle Global Challenges' is an Introductory Course for middle school and high school students who are interested in learning how to develop hardware solutions through product design and development, customer validation, rapid prototyping, and manufacturing of hardware for low income communities in the United States and abroad.

Listen to the Founder and Aspiring Founder stories of young MIT Undergraduate/Graduate Students, Social Entrepreneurs, and Tech Entrepreneurs on various topics related to launching a hardware start-up.

Participants will also have the opportunity to not only learn the basics of turning their world-changing ideas into reality through guest lectures...but will work alongside with a social start-up, Mbadika (http://mbadika.org), in developing their very own prototype DIY (do-it-yourself) kit, such as a Solar USB Charger for Mobile Devices, alongside their South African counterparts in order to introduce Sub-Saharan African youth to hardware concepts, such as using breadboards to design electronic circuits.

Interested? What are you waiting for? Sign up!

There are no course prerequisites and all levels are welcomed. :)


Prerequisites
None