Scientific American Teams with NYU School of Engineering to Launch Online Learning Program

NEW YORK— Scientific American and the New York University Polytechnic School of Engineering—leaders in science and technology with more than 300 years of combined experience—will launch an online continuing educational program next month. The jointly delivered Professional Learning Program balances interactive, prerecorded content and live, engaging webinars. Enrollment is now open for the first course in March 2014.

Designed for mid-career scientists, business people, and technical personnel to maintain competitive credentials, take their next career step, or stimulate their creativity, these interactive, weeklong online short courses provide up-to-the-minute instruction. Notable industry and academic experts create and teach the virtual courses. 

Delivered Monday through Friday, the courses offer five "Active Learning Modules," featuring high-quality production videos and graphics coupled with interactive elements to enrich the experience and retain flexibility and convenience.

Students get unlimited access to these lectures, 24/7, from anywhere in the world. They may enter the course up to a week before class starts. 

During real-time webinars, students participate in live Q&A sessions. With the instructor and fellow students, they share ideas using video, screen-sharing, chat rooms, interactive polling, and built-in phone and VOIP lines.

“Since 1845, Scientific American has shared the wonders of science with lifelong learners as the country’s longest continuously published magazine. It’s in our DNA,” says Scientific American Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina. “We are proud to work with the NYU School of Engineering to introduce these virtual courses, which will help busy professionals better understand the world around them.”

Added Robert Ubell, the school’s vice dean for online learning: “An acknowledged leader in online learning, NYU's School of Engineering draws together the most pedagogically sound virtual learning techniques and strategies, resulting in astonishing rates of student achievement. Our experience in engaging mid-career professionals ensures that students in the new program will find interactive classes surprisingly exciting and unusually informative.”

The first course, “Cognition and the Aging Brain,” addresses the enormous economic and social implications of the aging population. Instructor Dr. Brian Levine, a board-certified clinical neuropsychologist and an expert on human memory at the Rotman Research Institute of the Baycrest Centre for Geriatric Care, Toronto, explains the processes underlying healthy brain aging, how healthy aging is differentiated from dementia and how the major dementia syndromes, including Alzheimer’s Disease, are recognized.

“Cognition and the Aging Brain” will run March 17-21, 2014. Subsequent online courses include:

  • “Bioinformatics: How to Analyze the Human Genome,” taught by Jonathan Pevsner, Ph.D., associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, April 7-11
  • “Transportation Engineering,” taught by Vassilis Papayannoulis, Ph.D., affiliate with the IBI Group and nationwide transportation consultant, May 19-23
  • “Disaster Management,” taught by Yuko Nakanishi, Ph.D., principal of Nakanishi Research and Consulting and chair and longstanding member of the Transportation Research Board Committee on Critical Transportation Infrastructure Protection,  June 2-6
  • “Mysteries of the Universe,” taught by Don Lincoln , Ph.D., experimental particle physics researcher and scientist at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, June 16-20
  • “Quantum Mechanics and Information,” taught by Jonathan Bain, Ph.D., associate professor of philosophy of science of the NYU School of Engineering, August 4-8
  • “Sustainable Agriculture: How to Feed the World,” by Sara Boettiger, Ph.D., adjunct professor of agriculture and resource economics of the University of California, Berkeley, September 15-19

For additional information on these and other courses, including information on qualifying for Continuing Education Unitscredit, visit

About Scientific American

Scientific American is at the heart of Nature Publishing Group's consumer media division, meeting the needs of the general public. Founded in 1845, Scientific American is the oldest continuously published magazine in the U.S. and the leading authoritative publication for science in the general media. Together with and 14 local language editions around the world it reaches more than 5 million consumers and scientists. Other titles include Scientific American MIND and Spektrum der Wissenschaft in Germany. Scientific American won a 2011 National Magazine Award for General Excellence.