Quantum 3 APP for K-12 Students Developed by Michigan State University

Looking for some way to introduce the concepts of Quantum Chromodynamics to your students?

Then check out the Quantum 3 APP for K-12 students developed by Michigan State University assistant professor, Huey-Wen Lin.

Quantum Chromodynamics (QCD) is the theory that explains the interactions of subatomic particles which are the basis for all stable matter.

The game, which is similar to Candy Crush, except in this version you familiarize your students with the concepts of quarks and gluons and their quantum properties such as flavor and spin.


From the article written by  Madeline Kelly on the MSU website:

“We formed a development team of MSU undergraduate students to make the game and provided them with a QCD curriculum. The game will be tested at MSU outreach activities, as well as among local K-12 girls through school activities, and feedback will be used to improve the design,” Lin said. “The final game can be easily downloaded through various app stores and the impact will be measured through a follow-up survey. If such a new direction works to attract more girls to coding and physics, one should develop more games to engage more girls in STEM.”

The MSU undergraduate development team includes: Tristan Özkan, Harrison Sanders, Rebecca Roman, Roman Firestone and Colleen Little.

The inspiration for the app was part of a nationwide effort to get more girls interested in STEM concepts and the idea is that helping them develop a familiarity with the terminology of physics at a young age can inspire them to seek additional information and understanding of those concepts.

This intuitively makes sense as there are numerous scientists, engineers, and programmers who talk about the role that Star Trek and other works of science fiction had on their imagination and their decision to pursue advanced learning in science.

I really admire the fact that this was a collaborative effort involving undergraduates with significant testing and outreach dedicated to the K-12 students it is designed to serve.

Ready to get your gluon on?

For the full article by Madeline Kelly including a trailer for the game and information on downloading the app, please click here. 

Questions for Discussion:

  1. What is Quantum Chromodynamics?
  2. How did Dr. Lin develop the Quantum 3 app?
  3. What inspired Dr. Lin to develop this app?
  4. What other concepts can be introduced to students via mobile apps?

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