All Outreach Programs

Below is an alphabetical list of the programs currently being offered by the College of Sciences and Mathematics for kindergarten through high school students, kindergarten through high school teachers, and the community. Please click on the program titles for more information.

AMP'd (Auburn Mathematical Puzzle Challenge) -

Middle School AMP'd - The Middle School AMP’d challenge is held each fall.  The event is a problem solving challenge in which teams of 6 – 8 middle school students to work together to 'solve a crime' by answering real mathematical puzzles. The focus of Middle School AMP’d is for students of all math ability levels to engage in math in a way that is fun, interesting, and different from a traditional math class.

High School AMP'd - The High School AMP’d challenge is held during the spring semester.  This event challenges teams of high school students to solve 10 – 12 puzzles in a five-hour period.  Teams are designated as Junior Varsity or Varsity. The primary purpose of High School AMP’d is to encourage students with an interest in math or science to think outside the box while solving especially difficult puzzles.

AMSTI (Alabama Math, Science, and Technology Initiative) – The Alabama Math, Science, and Technology Initiative (AMSTI) is the Alabama Department of Education’s initiative to improve math and science teaching statewide.  AMSTI at Auburn University is a comprehensive K-12 science and math systemic educational transformation program that impacts thousands of teachers and students in east Alabama.  Its mission is to provide all students in grades K-12 with the knowledge and skills needed for success in the workforce and/or postsecondary studies.  Due to the efforts of other science and math outreach programs, Auburn University was named an AMSTI site beginning in Fall 2006. 

AP Summer Institue for Teachers - AP Institute is the official training program developed by The College Board. COSAM’s Office of Outreach, in collaboration with the Office of Professional and Continuing Education at Auburn University, hosts science and mathematics courses for area high school teachers each summer. Course offerings vary annually, but generally include professional development courses in biology, chemistry, physics, and statistics. Registration for these programs occurs through the Office of Professional and Continuing Education. For more information visit, www.auburn.edu/outreach/opce/apsi.

AU Explore -  AU Explore is an annual science and math festival offered free to 5th – 8th grade students and their teachers. Featured activities include a variety of live large-scale science demo shows, including the Birds of Prey Show hosted by the Southeastern Raptor Center, and the Wet and Wild Science Show hosted by the AU Science in Motion program specialists. In addition, AU faculty and students offer dozens of hands-on mini-courses called "Science Fun Shops" in which participants dissect sheep eyes, explore buried treasure, find their house using Google Earth, and isolate their own DNA to take home in a bottle! Some of the most fascinating experiences for students occur at the Science EXPO where they handle live animals, learn how to pan for real gold, visit "Charlie, the two-headed goat", and play a Wii game that teaches them about the field of plasma physics. There really is something that will peak the interest of every child...and every teacher!

BEST Robotics - (Boosting Engineering, Science and Technology) - BEST is a dynamic community-based program that aims to inspire middle and high school students to pursue careers in engineering, science, technology, and mathematics through participation in a sports-like science and engineering-based robotics competition.  BEST – a partnership between K-12, higher education, and industry – is the only national robotics education program offered FREE to schools, reducing the barrier of participation for rural and inner-city schools.  This hands-on, interdisciplinary Project Based Learning (PBL) approach teaches students to analyze and solve real-world problems utilizing the Engineering Design Process while at the same time teaching technical writing, verbal communication skills, computer programming, web page and video design, CAD design skills, and 3-D animation design-skills sought by universities in their student recruits and industry in their employees.  

War Eagle BEST - Co-hosted by the College of Sciences and Mathematics and the Samuel Ginn College of Engineering, War Eagle BEST challenges 25 schools in East Central Alabama and West Georgia to design, build, and program a robot from a kit of raw materials through implementation of the Engineering Design Process. The six-week-long program culminates in a one-day, sports-like competition hosted by Auburn University.

Tennessee Valley BEST - Co-produced by AU’s College of Sciences and Mathematics and the Samuel Ginn College of Engineering in partnership with Calhoun Community College in Decatur, Alabama, Tennessee Valley BEST hosts teams from 11 counties across North Alabama.

The South’s BEST - South’s BEST is the regional championship event for the top 50+ teams representing 17 hubs in six states.  The three–day event attracts over 3,500 visitors to Auburn’s campus each fall. 

BEST Teacher Workshop - The BEST Teacher Training Workshop is offered annually to all teachers, supporting teachers, and mentors of War Eagle BEST competing teams. The workshop includes technical and non-technical sessions. Technical sessions allow teachers to become familiar with the VEX hardware their students will use throughout the competition and will introduce them to the basics of programming. The non-technical portion of this BEST Training Workshop focuses on the four components of the BEST award including: Marketing Presentations, Project Engineering Notebook, Team Exhibits, and Spirit and Sportsmanship. In addition, this session will cover the Engineering Design Process, BEST resources for teachers, organizing and managing a successful BEST team, fundraising, and the 42 days of BEST. Please note that our office will NOT be offering a BEST Teacher Workshop in the summer of 2014, but do anticipate that these workshops will return in the summer of 2015.

COSAM Departmental Seminars and Colloquia*

Department of Biological Sciences – The department holds two weekly seminars; BioLunch is held Fridays from 12:00 – 1:00 p.m. in Funchess Hall 362 and usually features graduate students and their research or travels. The departmental seminar is typically held in Rouse Life Sciences Building at 3:00 p.m. Friday afternoon.

Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry – Colloquia are typically held every Thursday at 4:00 p.m. with refreshments at 3:45 p.m. in the Chemistry Building.

Department of Geology and Geography – Colloquia are typically held Thursdays at 3:30 p.m. in Petrie Hall.

Department of Mathematics and Statistics – Colloquia are usually held Fridays in Parker Hall 250 from 4:00 to 4:50 p.m. with refreshments in room 244 at 3:30 p.m.

Department of Physics – Colloquia are typically held every Friday afternoon at 3:00 p.m. in Parker Hall 249 with refreshments at 2:45 p.m. in Allison Lab, room 200.

Littleton-Franklin Lectures - The Littleton-Franklin Lectures address the pervasive problem of retaining our humanity and ideals in a rapidly developing technological society. Sponsored since 1968 by the John and Mary Franklin Foundation of Atlanta, GA, the series in its name also recognizes the services of Mosley Professor Emeritus Taylor D. Littleton. All lectures are free and open to the public.

*Seminars or colloquia open to the public

Greater East Alabama Regional Science and Engineering Fair (GEARSEF) - GEARSEF is a regional affiliate fair of the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (Intel ISEF), the world’s largest international pre-college science competition.  ISEF, the premiere science competition in the world, annually provides a forum for millions of students from over 50 countries, regions, and territories to showcase their independent research.  GEARSEF hosts middle and high school students from 19 counties in Central and Southeast Alabama. The top students in each category and division earn the chance to compete at the Alabama State Science and Engineering Fair. Several exceptional high school students from GEARSEF advance to the Intel ISEF in May and will compete against the top 1500 students in the world for nearly $4 million in prizes and scholarships.

Getting Under The Surface (G.U.T.S.) - GUTS is an evening program for 1st–6th grade students and their parents or grandparents offered 2–3 times during the spring semester.  Each evening session includes dessert followed by a 90–minute science activity featuring a “Getting Under the Surface” theme designed to demystify the science of topics ranging from DNA to creatures in the deep sea to how batteries work.  The mission of GUTS is to enhance science literacy and engagement within our community by providing relevant science activities to students and their parents.

Robotics Academy - The four-day Robotics Academy offered each summer to rising 7th–9th grade students interested in robotics. Working in teams, students will engage in real world a scenario that culminates in a friendly competition on the last day of the academy. Students are introduced to the design process, the importance of technical writing, and gain hands-on experience programming and building robots using VEX robotics kits.

Robotics University - Robotics University is a four-day, robotics education training workshop for middle school teachers in the state of Alabama. Teachers use VEX rapid-prototyping kits to build their own operational robot. The week also includes content deepening modules which focus on teaching mathematics and physical science content through the incorporation of robotics. Robotics University is the second component in a three-year-long grant to support the RE2-FoCUS Initiative (Robotics and Engineering Education Fostering the Conceptual Understanding of Science) to offer professional development for Alabama middle school science and math teachers. The workshops will occur in the summer of 2014 and 2015. Robotics University is funded by the Alabama State Department of Education. The RE2-FoCUS Initiative is a collaboration between the College of Sciences and Mathematics, the College of Education, and Alabama Math, Science and Technology Initiative (AMSTI). For more information regarding Robotics University please contact Mary Lou Ewald at 334-844-5745 or by e-mail at ewaldml@auburn.edu.

Science in Motion - The cost of science equipment required for many high school science laboratory experiences often prevents schools or school systems from doing high quality inquiry with their students.  The Science in Motion program purchases science equipment that can be shared for free between school systems across a region of Alabama.  School systems interested in participating in the program send their science teachers to professional development workshops for two consecutive summers to learn mastery of subject matter, proper use of equipment, and are provided with the opportunity to network with peers.  Then, during the school year Science in Motion program specialists drop off the science equipment at each school on an as needed basis.  The Science in Motion specialists may also join the teachers to team teach during classroom visits.  Auburn University hosts Science in Motion in the subjects of Biology, Chemistry, and Physics.

Science Matters - Science Matters is a summer enrichment academy for elementary students in grades 1-6 that offers youngsters a supercharged science experience. The program allows participants to explore the world of science through real experiments, fantastic enrichment activities, technology and art projects, and hands-on, make-n-take activities.  Each summer, Science Matters offers multiple science-themed weeks of programming.  Designed as a comprehensive six-year curricular program, Science Matters courses rotate each summer so that students can enter the program at any grade and experience unique programming each year through sixth grade.  The flexibility of Science Matters allows students to engage in a single week or in multiple weeks each summer.  Courses are designed and taught by exceptional elementary and secondary teachers of science who are trained in inquiry-based, student-centered learning approaches of instruction.

Science Olympiad - Science Olympiad is a one-day sports-like science competition involving approximately 2,000 Alabama K-8 students each year. Auburn hosts two separate Olympiad events each year – one for middle students and a separate event for elementary students. 

Elementary Science Olympiad - Offered each spring semester, Elementary School Science Olympiad is open to 25 teams consisting of 24 students in grades 3–6.

Middle Science Olympiad - Also offered each spring semester, Middle School Science Olympiad is open to 20 teams consisting of 15 students in grades 6–9.

S.S.I. (Summer Science Institute) - This summer science program for outstanding 11th – 12th grade students interested in science and mathematics is open to students residing in Alabama or Georgia. The program partners students with experienced AU Science and Math research faculty to explore topics more advanced than what is typically taught in a public or private high school environment.

STEM IQ - STEM IQ is a teacher training program for middle and high school teachers that focuses on aiding students through the science and engineering fair design process. The program is funded through a National Science Foundation, EPSCoR grant. Area school systems register as a team (2 middle school teachers, 2 high school teachers, 1 district administrator) to work as a vertical team. Participation in this program is by invitation and is limited to area school systems interested in participating in AU’s regional Science and Engineering Fair. For more information regarding the STEM IQ program please contact Mary Lou Ewald at 334-844-5745 or by e-mail at ewaldml@auburn.edu.

TASSAL (The Alabama STEM Studio for Afterschool Learning) - TASSAL is an after-school science education initiative developed by program specialists from Auburn University’s College of Education and College of Sciences and Mathematics in collaboration with the Truman Pierce Institute. TASSAL trainings utilize a series of hands-on, inquiry-based activities that integrate science, technology, engineering, and mathematics principles in a fun, non-threatening learning environment perfect for after school programs. The program is designed specifically for teachers of elementary and middle school students. For more information regarding the TASSAL program please contact Mary Lou Ewald at 334-844-5745 or by e-mail at ewaldml@auburn.edu.

Women's Leadership Symposium on Sciences and Mathematics - The Annual Women’s Leadership Symposium was established to showcase distinguished women in the fields of sciences and mathematics.  Area high school girls are invited to campus to be a part of this dynamic one-day experience.  The morning opens with a panel discussion featuring accomplished women from various disciplines then follows with a career corner session, and a luncheon that features a keynote speech delivered by a women distinguished in her discipline.  The goal is to provide a platform for young women to meet many different female role models in sciences and mathematics.  This event is sponsored by the Society of Women in Sciences and Mathematics, a COSAM-based organization committed to increasing awareness of the opportunities available for women at all stages of their careers, supporting experiences to enhance the learning environment, and encouraging young women to pursue career paths in sciences and mathematics.

Last updated: 07/28/2014