Students conduct experiments in SIR

Students conduct experiments in SIR

Dana Ahdab, sophomore, drops an alka seltzer tablet into water and watches as it launches a rocket with coins tied to it into the air. This experiment is just one of many experiments she has and will perform in her class SIR, Student Inquiry and Research.

SIR, for the first, time, is being offered as a yearlong class instead of just a summer research program. Its main focus is to apply the scientific method to different experiments. It is an experiment heavy class in which students mainly perform experiments and complete projects.

“It’s a very creative class in the way that you can design your experiments however you want. You have a lot flexibility with what you want to do, and you pretty much chose what you want to study,” Ahdab said.

SIR students complete different experiments. For example, they go to Waterfall Glenn often to perform experiments. They design experiments in class, and then go and test their experiments at Waterfall Glenn.

“There are different groups that are doing different experiments. We’ve got a soil-based group, a water-based group, and a forest-based group. So we’ll be traveling up and down the river that runs through Waterfall Glenn to take data,” Ahdab said.

Furthermore, on Oct. 25, the class will be attending a science symposium at the Museum of Science and Industry. There, they will be paired up with a scientist to learn more about science.

As the guinea pig group, this year’s class will be testing to see how the class works out. But, since students are given more expansive time to work on projects, the idea is that students will be able to see the effects of their experiments over time.

“Overall, the class is a great experience, and I’m glad I took it. It’ll help me decide on a field of science that I am interested in pursuing in the future,” Ahdab said.