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WIU Physics Chair Part of National Quantum Information Science Teaching Team

April 11, 2022

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MACOMB, IL – Western Illinois University Department of Physics Chair Kishor T. Kapale is part of a national team, with collaboration from others at Google and Caltech, to introduce quantum information science concepts in high schools across the country.

The program, which includes educational activities and corresponding teaching materials for high school teachers, will be released nationwide this month as part of World Quantum Day, April 14. The program has been tested in a pilot phase at various high schools since November.

"We are a team that involves quantum physicists, quantum enthusiasts, educators, high-school teachers, software designers, software engineers, artists, instructional designers, technical/artistic writers, and chess players," said Kapale. "We belong to seven different institutions: Google, Institute for Quantum Information and Matter at Caltech, Quantum Realm Games, ArcanForge, two high-schools in the Los Angeles area, and Western Illinois University."

Through the development of the project, the two separate learning activities were created to teach students quantum physics – first one based on the game of quantum chess and second one based on newly devised magic square game called "Zeros and Ones." During chess game play, an interactive character named Sphiro, appears on the screen to give students live feedback during their game play, including the probability of success of their chosen chess moves.

This project is part of QuanTime, a quantum education initiative supported by the White House National Quantum Coordination Office and the National Science Foundation.

The QuanTime activities will be available to high-school teachers nationwide during April 11 through May 31. Interested high-school teachers can register at

"Despite the challenges of the pandemic, through Google-Meet and Zoom we could bring together a diverse team of passionate individuals to create a platform to engage high-school students with quantum physics," said Kapale. "We use puzzles, interactive game play, and tailor-made animations, to present the quantum concepts of superposition and entanglement in a very simple and intuitive way. Our goal is to not only introduce the students to the magical world of quantum, but also to get them excited about it and its future promise for the development of ultra-powerful quantum computers and other quantum technologies."

The group's work was most recently presented at the American Physical Society's annual meeting in March.

The high-school teachers interested in implementing these activities in their classroom will find the teaching materials at The activities are self-explanatory, include plenty of teaching materials, need minimal preparation time. Additional assistance is available through Kapale and his team. Kapale can be reached at

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