Sep 14-Dec 11, 2015
Credit: 3 graduate
Tuition & Fees: $990.65 NSTA members 10% discount
Instructor(s): TBA

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Course Description

This course will provide grade 7-12 science teachers with a rigorous overview of the evolution of the Earth and life, and the methods that geologists use to investigate the history of our planet. The content of this course will be supplemented by reading scientific and popular literature and a focus on the pedagogy of teaching concepts of evolution and geologic time to middle and high school students. This course is intended strictly for science teachers enrolled in the Masters of Science and Science Education degree program and other science teachers with a minimum of two years teaching experience.

Meeting Place and Times

Teachers login to the course at a time of day that best fits their schedule. It is necessary to connect at least 4 - 6 times per week spending 9 - 12 hours each week, either online or offline, while the course is in session, to stay current and successfully complete this 3 credit graduate level course.




Bachelor's degree in science, science education or a related area, and should have had a college course in physical geology. Students also must have science teaching experience, be enrolled in the MSSE degree program as a degree or non-degree seeking student or have instructor approval.

Target Audience

7-12 grade science teachers

Time Commitment:

9-12 hours per week. If you are unfamiliar with this field of study and/or method of delivery, you may require more time.

Tuition and Fees

 Program Fee $105.50
 Computer Fee$10.65
 Distributed Learning Fee$75.00

A $30 registration fee is also charged once per semester.

The costs above assume that you are taking only MSU Extended University courses during the semester that the course is offered. If you also registered for courses through the MSU Registrar, the regular MSU fee structure may apply.

A $40 late fee will be assessed if payment is not posted to your account by 3 pm (Mountain Time) of the course start date (or the business day before if the course starts on a weekend or a holiday).

To learn more about tuition and fees, please see the University Business Services' Student Accounts Web page.

NSTA Members are eligible to receive a 10% discount on tuition. Enter your NSTA Membership Number when you are asked for it on the registration form.

Required Books/Materials

  • The Earth Through Time: 10th Edition, by H.L. Levin. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
    ISBN: 978-1-118-25467-7

Optional Books/Materials:

  • Dictionary of Geological Terms, by Bates, R.L., and Jackson, Julie: Anchor Press.

You can order the text(s) through the Montana State University Bookstore at 1-888-247-2546. Ask to speak with the Textbook Department. It will expedite your order if you tell the sales representative:

  • the course number & title (ERTH 591: Historical Geology for Educators)
  • the title of the texts
  • that the course is offered online through the Extended University

Computer Requirements:

  • Internet access
  • A device and browser that pass the system check for Brightspace LE, MSU's learning management system.

This course uses a learning management system. You will learn more closer to the course start date.

For More Information

Please contact Diana Paterson by phone at (406) 994-5679 or by email at

How to Register

Register Online