Sir Isaac Newton Contest home

In memory of Firas Mansour - Extraordinary Lecturer and SIN Team Chair

Firas MansourIt is with great sadness that we acknowledge the passing of our dear colleague and friend, Professor Firas Mansour on Dec 29th, 2021. Professor Mansour was an exceptional Lecturer, Author, and Physics Education Researcher. His classroom style “provoked” his students to learn, including those who initially thought they disliked physics. Students claim that they would not have passed introductory physics had it not been for Professor Mansour’s fierce commitment. Firas brought his love for his students, his enthusiasm, sense of humour, rigor, and challenging questions to the Chair of the SIN Committee for the benefit of all Grade 12 students. He is missed by us all.

All who knew Firas knew of him as larger than life. He was someone who embodied life, having skillfully lived 100 years of friendships, smiles, and activities in his 50 years. He was a person who struck up conversations with complete strangers everywhere he went and asked them meaningful questions about their lives. He got through doors others wouldn’t be able to through sheer charisma. He loved his students and his own children and showed that love through extra classes, tutorials, and daily physical play. He showed his dedication to help others through countless acts of service and made people smile through antics that brought them out of their shells. Firas brought teams together and made work more efficient and enjoyable, pioneered teaching practices years ahead of their widespread adoption and was a genius at making physics accessible for any student.

The SIN Team (2018)SIN Team enjoying their time together in 2018.
From left: Steve Pfisterer, Rohan Jayasundera, Joe West, Roger Melko, Richard Epp, Firas Mansour

The Sir Isaac Newton (SIN) contest is a test of high school physics and is offered by the Department of Physics & Astronomy at the University of Waterloo to encourage the teaching of physics. The test, although challenging, is meant to be refreshing and fun. Political and other topical humour have marked SIN exams for years. Students participate from across Canada, the USA and abroad.

Students should approach their physics teacher or guidance counsellor who will have access to all the details (or they can get the details by visiting this web site).

Contest day

May 5, 2022

Register by

Thursday, April 28, 2022

Login credentials will be emailed to the test proctor on Monday, May 2, 2022.

Results and certificates are not emailed out. Teachers can print certificates and access student results from their account.

Supervision Recommendation Note

The contest must be proctored and can ONLY be written in a supervised environment. There will be NO self-administered tests in 2022.