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Professional Development & Teacher Opportunities

CSTA provides the opportunity for organizations with professional development opportunities for science teachers to post their program information on the CSTA website, subject to CSTA approval. If you would like to submit information to be included on this site, please e-mail the webmaster.

Click here to view our science/science education events calendar.

Last updated: July 21, 2014

National Summer Teacher Institute on Innovation, STEM, and Intellectual Property

August 10-14, 2014, in Santa Clara, CA

Free of charge and meals included!

This multi-day professional development training opportunity is designed to help middle and high school teachers incorporate concepts of making, inventing, and intellectual property creation and protection into classroom instruction. Presentation speakers and hands-on workshop instructors will include noted scientists and engineers from the Science of Innovation series, an 11-part educational video series highlighting innovations and the specific processes that helped bring them about. The U.S. Department of Education, National Science Foundation (NSF), Smithsonian Institution, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), and other government agencies will be represented at the Institute. Teacher participants are expected to commit to implementing lessons learned in their school districts in order to support development of a STEM/Innovation- learning ecosystem. The initial deadline for teachers to apply has been extended to July 28 only for teachers living within a 50-mile radius of Santa Clara. The application process is already closed for teachers beyond a 50-mile radius. For more information about the Institute and how to apply, please visit our webpage at www.uspto.gov/education.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Joyce Ward, Director of the Office of Education and Outreach, at joyce.ward@uspto.gov or education@uspto.gov.

National Association of Geoscience Teachers – Far Western Section October 10-12, 2014 Conference

This is a hands-on-geology fieldtrip/workshop oriented conference with registration open to anyone with an interest in geology. K-12 teachers who attend both a Saturday fieldtrip and Sunday fieldtrip/workshop are eligible for professional development hours via Sacramento State University. It is a great opportunity for educators, professors, geoscientists, and all others who are interested in these subjects to network, share experiences, and promote geoscience education!

This year's Saturday field trip opportunities include geology of the Sierra Nevada Hwy 80 corridor (Eldridge Moores), Yuba Goldfields (California Mineral Education Foundation), Sacramento Delta hydrology and geology (Rob Berry), local Sacramento geology (Tim Horner), mercury in Gold Rush streams (Mike Hunerlach) and Blodgett Research Forest (Rob York).

Sunday workshops and ½ day field trips cover topics such as mineral uses, Mesozoic reptiles in California, atmospheric circulation modeling for the "Next Generation Science Standards", and more!

Friday evening presentation will be by Stephen Testa, California State Mining Board, speaking on “Oil, Gold, Earthquakes and Higher Education in the latter half of the 19th Century.” Saturday dinner presentation will be Sue McClurg, Water Education Foundation, speaking on “The Bay Delta Conservation Plan: How did we get here, and where are we going?”

For more information on fieldtrips, workshops, and registration go to: http://nagt-fws.org/

Marine Education Fellowship for Teachers

Ecology Project International (www.ecologyproject.org) is a non-profit science education and student travel organization that also offers professional development opportunities for science teachers. We operate hands-on student field programs in Yellowstone, Costa Rica, Mexico, Belize, Panama, and Ecuador. In the spring of 2015, we will host up to 36 science teachers from across the U.S. on our 3rd annual Marine Education Fellowship in Baja and Costa Rica.

We're excited to share this opportunity with teachers, and our application is now open!

For complete detailed information visit the Fellowship website: http://www.ecologyproject.org/promo/fellowship

Learning How Light Works: Reflection

This fun, two-hour workshop, introduces K-12 teachers and anyone interested in doing science outreach to a make-and-take kaleidoscope activity that teaches students some of the basic properties of light. This workshop aligns with the newly developed Next Generation Science Standards and attendees can earn CEUs for participation.

Fee waives available on request. Contact: kathleen@spie.org

For complete information on this workshop, go to:


Application for NITARP for 2015 is Now Available

NITARP, the NASA/IPAC Teacher Archive Research Program, gets teachers involved in authentic astronomical research. We partner small groups of educators with a mentor professional astronomer for an original research project. The educators incorporate the experience into their classrooms and share their experience with other teachers. The program runs January through January. Applications are available now and due on September 22, 2014.

Some things that make our program different from many (if not most) other astronomy programs for educators: (1) Each team does original research using real astronomical data, not canned labs or reproductions of previously done research; (2) Each team writes up the results of their research and presents it in a science poster session at an American Astronomical Society meeting (the AAS is the professional organization for astronomers in the US). The posters are distributed throughout the meeting, in amongst other researchers' work; the participants are not "given a free pass" because they are educators and students. Each team also presents the educational results of their experience in the program. (3) The program runs over 13 months, not just a few days or weeks. (4) Teachers are encouraged to involve their students from the beginning of the program.

Most of our educators are high school classroom educators, but 8th grade, community college, and informal educators have participated as well. The kinds of educators we are looking for are those who already know the basics of astronomy, and are interested in learning exactly how astronomy research is conducted.

We anticipate selecting 6 new teachers for 2015. In past years, we have had about 5 times as many applicants as we have had spots.

For more information, please see our website or if you have any questions, please feel free to contact our central email, nitarp@ipac.caltech.edu.

Teacher Trainings with Energize Schools

Energize Schools is offering two teacher training courses in June that prepare high school teachers to lead their students in an office sustainability assessment. After this training you will be able to guide students through a sustainability assessment where they will receive audit training, recruit a business to work with, perform an audit, create a report, and give a presentation on their findings both to their classmates and to the business audited. The two trainings in the month of June are in San Francisco and San Diego. The Southern California training will take place June 19th from 1:00-3:00pm at the SDG&E Energy Innovation Center in San Diego. The Northern California Training will take place June 24th from 3:30-5:30pm at the PG&E Pacific Energy Center in San Francisco. To register and learn more about this and other free teacher trainings please click here for the Southern California website and click here for the Northern California website.

pply, please click here , or contact Andy Shaner at 281-486-2163 or shaner@lpi.usra.edu.

Harvard Medical School Professional Development for High School Teachers

Personal Genetics Education Project
Tuesday – Thursday, July 29-31, 2014; 9:00 – 3:30
Boston, MA
Earn 18 PDPs for the three-day session
Cost: $50 (scholarships available)

This three-day training for teachers will be an introduction to personal genetics and its impact on society. A wave of personal genetic information is coming – how can we prepare students to make informed choices for themselves and for society as a whole?

Current high school students are among the first generation that will have unprecedented access to information about their DNA, as genome sequencing and genetic testing become cheaper and more available. We create interactive lessons that engage students in discussions about the potential risks and benefits of knowing more about your DNA, as well as ways in which they could be impacted. Our goal is to combine accurate scientific content with the real-world impact on people and the choices they may face.

Through workshop-style sessions, we will look at examples of the hopes, realities and controversies in personal genetics. We will start with an overview: Why is genetics getting more personal? What has been happening, scientifically and technologically, since the completion of the Human Genome Project? Starting with scientific questions and concepts, we will make connections to real world opportunities and conundrums your students and their families will face in the coming years.

Topics to be covered: Advances in personal genetics, the intersection of athletics and genetics, genetics and aggression/complex human behavior, reproductive genetics, low cost genetic testing, the history of eugenics and future of genetics, crime and DNA, and critical thinking as it applies to assessing genetic risk factors.

Content Area: Biology, Health, Social Studies, Genetics, and Bioethics; grades 9 – 12

To register, click here. For more information, click here or email Lauren Tomaselli at ltomaselli@pged.med.harvard.edu, or call (617) 432-1797. Visit our website at www.pged.org for more information about our project.

New Master's Program for Science Teachers at UC Irvine

Announcing an exciting opportunity to obtain a truly innovative advanced degree designed especially for science teachers. The University of California at Irvine is offering a new Master's of Science program in Biological Sciences and Educational Media Design (UCI M.S. BSEMD), tailored to meet the needs of working science teachers. Gain Master's-level expertise in biological science content knowledge, advanced pedagogical methods, and cutting-edge media production techniques. Core courses are conveniently offered during the evenings, and electives can be chosen to fit your desired focus and schedule on a full-time or part-time basis. UC Irvine is proud to support the California community of teachers with this rigorous new program and applications are now being accepted for admission this coming Fall. (BSEMD Commercial Video)

Energize Schools San Diego

Energize Schools San Diego is a partnership between Strategic Energy Innovations and San Diego Gas & Electric that provides high schools students and teachers with support to reduce energy bills and impact on the environment while empowering student learning and leadership. Energize Schools San Diego is proud to announce the following opportunities offered at no-cost. Energize Schools Teacher Trainings are a professional development opportunities for teachers, offering teachers hands-on technical training for sustainability education. The San Diego School Energy Conservation Competition will award $500 to the top 3 schools who achieve the greatest energy reduction during the competition, April 18th to May 8th. The San Diego High School Green Careers Conference allows students to present to and learn from their peers and industry professionals on sustainable designs, enterprises, and projects. Please click the links for more information or to sign up or visit the Energize Schools San Diego Website. For questions contact Graham Shepard at Graham@seiinc.org or 415-507-1797.

Juice From Juice: A Cross-cutting Concepts Workshop on Solar Engineering Presented at Caltech

Free professional development workshops offered on either January 11 or March 8, 2014. The workshops are presented by Caltech's NSF funded Center for Chemical Innovation in Solar Fuels. It is titled "Juice from Juice" and provides instruction on 4 lessons relating to solar and renewable energy. Participants learn to make their own dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSC) and practice three supporting lesson plans in chemistry, biology and physics. In addition, they can sign-up for a site visit from the Caltech researchers who run the workshop to help them implement the lessons in the classroom for the first time.

It's a fun, engaging workshop that will help bring current scientific research problems into the classroom in a hands-on, inquiry-based manner. To RSVP for one of the workshop dates or for more information, email juicefromjuice@caltech.edu or call (818) 515-6502. Hope to see you there!"

English Language Arts: Writing to Inform, Argue, and Analyze

The California Department of Education (CDE) is pleased to announce that the English Language Arts: Writing to Inform, Argue, and Analyze professional learning module (PLM) is now available online on the Brokers of Expertise California Common Core State Standards (CCSS) PLM Web page. This module is part of the CCSS for California Educators series and was developed in collaboration with the University of California Berkeley/California Writing Project. The module is available in two formats: online independent use and on-site blended group facilitation. Additional professional learning modules will become available in early summer.

Click here to access the English Language Arts: Writing to Inform, Argue, and Analyze professional learning module.

MAT@USC: University of Southern California’s online Master of Arts in Teaching Program

Teachers: Would you like to earn your MAT and teaching credential? -- At the University of Southern California’s Rossier School of Education, we challenged ourselves to re-imagine our Master of Arts in Teaching program; to create a trailblazing curriculum that integrates rich, interactive online learning with intensive, school-based fieldwork experiences, no matter where students live -- the result is the MAT@USC, the same rigor as our traditional on-campus MAT program, conceived and built around an honest discussion about how to integrate theory effectively with classroom practice. For more information visit: Online Teaching Program

Teach California

Whether you are a student, changing careers, looking for a job, or are a teacher from another state or country, TEACH California has everything you need to know about teaching and how to become a California teacher. You'll find information about pay, jobs, credentialing, licensure and financial aid. You can even make and save your own personal career plan, and it's all free. Details can be found at http://www.teachcalifornia.org/

Amgen Scholarships Available for Science Teachers Pursuing National Board Certification

Amgen scholarships are available for science teachers pursuing National Board Certification, the most prestigious credential in the teaching profession. The Amgen Foundation is committing $1.5 million over three years to support science teachers in schools across the country who choose to obtain National Board Certification. Scholarships will be given on a first-come, first-served basis to teachers in select communities. First priority will be given to science teachers teaching ages 11-18. If funding remains available, scholarships will also be awarded to elementary teachers teaching students ages 3-12 who are responsible for science instruction. Teachers from the following California couties may apply: Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, Sonoma, and Ventura. To apply visit: http://nbpts.org/scholarships.

Global Ozone (G03) Project

Teachers: Would you like to participate in an exciting new project for high school students, measuring ozone and meteorological parameters, and receive a free instrument package, valued at $5,000, for your school? In the GO3 Project, students around the world measure ozone and meteorological parameters outside their school and upload their data to an overlay in Google Earth to share with other students, teachers, and scientists around the world. Eighteen schools participating at the present time, including four international sister schools in Madrid, Moscow, Sydney, and Cairo. GO3 students are learning about environmental science while helping create the world's first ground-level ozone database. To learn more about the project, see the G03 website and 2-minute video at http://www.go3project.com.

Online Colleges

OnlineColleges.org is a nonprofit resource for students considering an online college for their associates, bachelors, masters or doctorate level degree. All the schools are listed on the front page and lead directly to each program, additionally they are sorted by state. Visit http://www.onlinecolleges.org/.

Masters in Education Guide

The Masters in Education Guide is an on-line directory of Masters in Education programs. Programs are searchable by subject matter, state, or type of degree (masters or doctorate). The site also offers informational articles and links to job opportunities. http://mastersineducationguide.com/

Online Education Degrees

Education degree.com includes over 20,000 teacher education degree and certificate programs, offered by over 1,700 colleges and school districts across the US, reviewed and compiled by hand from the college and district websites. Visit http://www.educationdegree.com for links and information.

Foundational Level General Science/Math Credentials

The School of Education at Sonoma State University will offer summer institutes for teachers who want to earn foundational level teaching credentials in science or mathematics. The general science teaching credential allows for teaching science at the junior high school level or basic high school science classes, but not college prep high school lab science classes. Check with Sonoma State University at http://www.sonoma.edu/education/ for more information.

Nominate a Distinguished Teacher

TEACH California seeks great science, math, and special ed. teachers to feature on their Distinguished Teachers” website. Featuring vignettes of California teachers, the site honors the thousands of great teachers in the state and allows them to share their thoughts on teaching. Requirements of the nominated teachers are: 1. they are GREAT teachers; 2. they are fully credentialed; and 3. they teach special education, mathematics, or science (the highest shortage areas). Get more information and find out how to nominate someone at http://www.teachcalifornia.org/.

Biology Teachers Needed to Lead Field Experiences

Since 1990, Save The Rainforest (STR ) has been sending groups of high school and middle school students to the rainforest reserves it helped create with donations from school children. Many of the biology teachers who have led these groups are retiring, and STR is looking for a new generation of biology teachers to take their students on field courses to the Galapagos, Amazon, Costa Rica, Belize, Panama, and Mexico. For more information contact Bruce Calhoun at (608) 729- 4877 or saverfn@cybermesa.com, or view STR's website at www.saverfn.org. STR is a non-profit organization.

Seminars on Science: Online Graduate Courses for Educators American Museum of Natural History

Seminars on Science offers online graduate courses in the life, earth, and physical sciences to educators throughout the country and abroad. Designed by the Museum specifically for K-12 educators, each six-week course immerses the learner in an area of contemporary research. Educators come away with a deeper understanding of both the science and the tools of scientific inquiry as well as an array of classroom resources. Courses are co-taught and led by Museum scientists and educators and feature rich web-based discussions. Each course is available for up to 4 graduate credits from leading institutions. Courses offered by the program include Evolution; The Solar System; Earth: Inside and Out; The Ocean System; Genetics, Genomics, Genethics and more. For more information on courses or to register, go to http://learn.amnh.org/welcome.php?w=CASTA.

Science In Action Courses from the University of Nebraska

Science in Action courses are online courses that integrate the application of content and pedagogy in the biological, physical, and earth sciences. These courses are designed to meet the needs of K-12 educators who want to improve their content knowledge and ability to teach science. Course curricula align with state and national science standards. Available courses are Entomology, Natural Resources, Biotechnology, and Food Science and Technology. For more information, contact Cindy Larson-Miller at (402) 730-9691 or clarson@unlserve.unl.edu

National Science Resources Center’s Professional Development Center

The National Science Resources Center's Professional Development Center cordially invites you to take part in one or more unique and exciting professional development opportunities—the Smithsonian Science Education Academies for Teachers. Deepen your knowledge of life and/or physical science; gain special access to the scientists, curators, and educators of the Smithsonian Institution and other museums and research institutions; learn about the unparalleled resources available to teachers through the Smithsonian, earn three graduate credits from Montclair State University, New Jersey; inspire your students to greater understanding of how the world works. For more information visit http://www.nsrconline.org/professional_development/index.html.

University of Michigan and Northwestern University

As part of an NSF-funded research study, the University of Michigan and Northwestern University are offering free professional development to teachers who purchase It's About Time's Investigations in Environmental Science, a year-long, case-based environmental science curriculum. Teachers will receive 48 hours of free professional development along with a $1,500 stipend upon completion of the study. To learn more about the curriculum or to apply for the study, visit http://www.worldwatcher.northwestern.edu or contact Beth Kubitskey at kubitske@umich.edu.

Coast Alive! Teacher Institute at Monterey

Explore the Elkhorn Slough and nearby beaches while learning to incorporate stimulating, inquiry based, and multimedia curriculum in your middle or high school science classroom. The focus on experimental design will help you develop a hypothesis and conduct research in the best possible setting--the field! Return with students to design and conduct field studies. You will participate in hands-on local field investigations, receive a free Coast Alive!—Land-Sea Interface CD-ROM, use Coast Alive! materials, and earn a $500 stipend from California State Parks and the California Institute for Biodiversity. Enrollment will fill before the end of the school year. For upper elementary and middle school educators; 6 CSUMB academic quarter units. Registration fee without credit: $50. For details and to apply, visit http://www.EurekaSeries.org.

Council for Elementary Science International

The Council for Elementary Science International (CESI) invites teachers to join the effort to improve science teaching. CESI has a website that provides members access to a variety of elementary science opportunities, including fellowships, grants, and science activities (from past Make-It and Take-It programs held at regional and national NSTA conventions). Newsletters and the CESI Journal are additional benefits that teachers will receive when choosing to join the organization. Memberships can be completed at the web site on-line at http://www.cesiscience.org/. Questions regarding membership and the CESI organization can be emailed to sumrall@olemiss.edu.