*** Akron Polymer Training Services now offers remote learning training courses featuring live instructors. For more information, visit our Online Course Requirements webpage. ***

Polymer Science for Engineers

Course description
Time: 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Location: 240 South Forge Street, Akron, Ohio 44325
Classroom 217 (Located inside the National Polymer Innovation Center)
Cost: $1,200 USD
CEU's: 1.6
Instructor: Dr. Tom Dudek

Course Overview

This short course is designed to introduce engineers and engineering students to the basic concepts of polymer science and polymer engineering. It provides an overview of polymer materials, thermoplastic and thermoset polymers, polymer polymerization methods, copolymerization, block and graft copolymers, mechanical properties and morphology of polymers in glassy, rubbery and viscous melt states and the relationship between polymer molecular structure and glass transition and melting temperatures. This course also provides an introduction to rubber elasticity, rubber technology, thermoplastic elastomers and viscoelastic properties of polymers including creep, stress relaxation and dynamic mechanical properties. The flow properties of polymer melts and the polymer processing methods of extrusion, injection molding, blow molding, thermoforming and rotational molding are also discussed.

Instructor Biography:

Dr. Thomas Dudek earned his PhD in polymer science from the University of Akron. After a 38 year career as a research manager in industrial and government research laboratories (Air Force Materials Laboratory, Aerospace Corporation, NASA Ames Research Laboratory, Lord Manufacturing Co. and GenCorp Inc), he turned his interest to teaching courses in polymers (Introduction to Polymer Science for Engineers, Polymer Morphology and Polymer Engineering Laboratory) to undergraduate and graduate students at the University of Akron. He also has been an instructor in short courses for industry at the Akron Polymer Training Center on the following topics: Polymer Science for Engineers, Engineered Rubber Products, Rubber Technology and Extrusion, Rubber Injection Molding and Tire Materials.

During his professional career he conducted and managed research in the following areas: Dynamic mechanical and failure properties of elastomers and plastics; polymer structure-mechanical property relationships; polymer composites; tire materials; design of vibration control, rubber gasket and reinforced plastic products; polymer processing and computer simulation of polymer products and processes. He has 20 technical publications and 4 U.S. patents and is a long time member of the American Chemical Society and the American Physical Society.

  1. Introduction to Polymer Materials
  2. Thermal Transitions in Polymers – Glass and Melting
  3. Polymerization Methods
    1. Step-Growth Polymerization
    2. Chain Growth Polymerization
      1. Free Radical, Cationic, Anionic, Stereospecific Coordination Catalysts and Ring Opening
      2. Copolymerization and Copolymers (Random, Block and Graft)
  4. Polymer Characterization Methods--Molecular Mass and Chain Microstructure
    1. Osmometry, Light Scattering, Solution Viscosity and SEC
    2. Spectroscopic Methods -- IR and NMR
  5. Polymer Materials and Applications
    1. Commodity Thermoplastics
      1. Polymer Film Processes and Properties
    2. Engineering Thermoplastics
      1. Polymer Additives and Plastics Compounding
      2. Semi-crystalline Polymers and Fiber Spinning Processes (Ultrahigh Modulus Fibers)
    3. Engineering Thermosets
      1. Polymer Composites
    4. Elastomers and Rubber Technology
      1. Thermoplastic elastomers
  6. Polymer Processing
    1. Rheological Properties of Polymers
    2. Extrusion and Injection Molding
    3. Blow Molding, Thermoforming, Rotational Molding, Compression and Transfer Molding
  7. Polymer Solutions, Polymer Blends, and Ionomers
  8. Viscoelastic Properties of Polymers


If you have any questions or need more information about this course, please contact:

Penelope Pinkston


Online Registration


Registration Form

Registration information: Registration shall remain open until posted as closed on the course listing on this site.

Registrations must be guaranteed by check, a purchase order number or a credit card, otherwise the registration will not be processed. Checks should be made payable to "The Akron Polymer Technology Services Training Center" and must include a copy of your completed registration form. Course fees are due before attending.

All registrations—whether by online, phone, fax or mail—will be confirmed and considered binding and subject to all cancellation policies. If you do not receive a confirmation prior to the class, please call The Akron Polymer Technology Services Training Center to verify your registration.

Course fee includes classroom instruction, instructional materials, parking permits, continental breakfast, lunch, beverages and refreshment breaks. Travel and hotel accommodations are not included.


Visit our registration webpage to view our cancellation/withdrawal policy.