Professional Development Opportunities

Numerous organizations offer professional development opportunities for Earth and Space science educators throughout the year. The list below provides information about a number of these opportunities. The descriptions below come from the programs' websites so be sure to click on the URL for all the details concerning application deadlines and a more in-depth program description.

If you have a professional development opportunity that you would like to have listed here, please post the opportunity.

NSTA has issued its Call-for-Entries for the 2015–2016 Awards Program
The annual NSTA Awards and Recognition Program recognizes exceptional and innovative science educators created in 1973. The NSTA Awards and Recognition were created to raise awareness and exposure of the outstanding work being done in the science education field.

All entries must be received by 11:59 PM EST on 11/30/2015, via online submission with the exception of the Shell Science Teaching Award whose deadline is 11/18/2015. Entry fees are free.

GIFT (Geoscience Information for Teachers) Workshops on Mon & Tue, 14 - 15 Dec

Teacher friendly guides to the Earth Science of the United States is a website published by the Paleontological Research Institution. The site breaks up the US into different regions around the country. Each region contains information specific to that region of the country. Information included covers topics such as: geologic history, rocks, fossils, mineral resources, soil, climate, and more. The authors also include a How to Use This Guide section.

NESTA Events

Free online Oceans Literacy course.
This course will help you understand seven essential principles that explain fundamental concepts about the ocean.

This free 4-part web seminar series starts on April 30, 2015 and runs through May 12, 2015. The series focuses on the ocean's trace elements and what they can tell us about geochemical processes, the carbon cycle, and climate. Nine scientists will share their work with the participants. The link will take you to the registration page.

Spring 2015 registration is now open for the American Meteorological Society DataStreme online courses in Atmosphere, Oceans, and Climate. Each course is an innovative Internet-based distance-learning course directed towards middle-school teachers, but open to all K-12 teachers. These courses are offered FREE of charge to K-12 teachers. Upon completion of any one course, teachers are awarded 3 graduate-level science credits through the State University of New York. In addition, two summer workshops are also available for pre-college teachers: 1.) Atmospheric Science Topics (July 12-24, 2015 in Kansas City, MO) and 2.) Oceanographic Topics (July 12-24, 2015 in Annapolis, MD).

Contact a LIT leader in your state .

or contact John Moore

NESTA and Windows to the Universe offer a set of nine web seminars that cover a number of space science topics. Windows to the Universe members can also access a PowerPoint presentation for each seminar.

The SSEATs Academies provide teachers with an opportunity to take part in a week-long professional development course behind-the-scenes at Smithsonian museums and other world class research facilities throughout the greater Washington, DC area. The academies help to bridge the gap between the formal science education programs of the SSEC and the informal science education that exists throughout the Smithsonian, and combine training in science pedagogy with content presented by scientists and researchers who are experts in their fields
See the announcement for information about tuition and other details.

Location: Colorado Mountain College - Leadville, CO April 17-19, 20151: $70 (Teacher enhancement credit available) and Western State Colorado University - Gunnison, CO April 24-26, 2015: $135 for 1 TE Graduate Credit
Get ready to move! Immerse yourself in the study of astronomy and the practice of sky watching with inquiry-based lessons (including Kinesthetic Astronomy) and evening sky watching. Content includes sky motions of the Sun, planets, stars; seasons; phases of the Moon. Teaching materials will be provided.

Soil is a three-dimensional living-body that you can consider as the skin covering the earth's surface. Soils play critical roles in many of the environmental challenges facing the world. Soils are essential for life on earth. People may not realize it, but they are becoming ever more dependent on the ecological functions of soil:

  1. Supporting plant growth
  2. Controlling the flow of water through the hydrologic cycle
  3. Recycling waste products of society and nature
  4. Providing habitat for an enormous diversity of organisms
  5. Functioning in built environments as construction material and support for building foundations

This series of eight live webinars is designed to introduce you to the field of soil science. Details about each webinar are available at

Member login

Upcoming Events

Members - Log in for access to the full calendar of upcoming events

12/03/2015 - 8:00am
12/13/2015 - 8:00am

Earth and Space Science Today

Now you can easily access information on topics that highlight our active Earth. Learn all about the latest earthquakes, volcanoes, hurricanes, severe weather, wildfires, tides and currents, droughts, a calendar of solar and lunar eclipses, and daily streamflow information.