Bozeman, MT/Yellowstone National Park
Jul 20-Jul 24, 2015
Credit: 2 graduate
Tuition & Fees: $727.00
Instructor(s): Stephanie McGinnis

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Course Description

  1. Learn about the biotic and abiotic factors that influence lake dynamics; we will specifically address lakes within Yellowstone National Park.
  2. Understand and perform field sampling and taxonomic and genetic identification techniques in the laboratory.
  3. Apply learned skills and knowledge in the classroom grades 5-12.
Students will be responsible for reading materials contained in a course packet and additional materials handed out throughout the course. Students should be prepared for any type of weather in the field.
    Grading is as follows:
  • 50% Participation. Students are expected to be present at all times and effectively participate in activities and discussion. Participation will be assessed on a daily basis.
  • 20% Group Presentation/Discussion. Student groups will led class discussion of assigned scientific journal articles.
  • 20% Lesson Plan. Each student will draft a 2-3 page lesson plan that incorporates aspects of this class. Lesson plans must be submitted to me no later than August 4th.
  • 10% GenBank Assignment. You will complete an assignment using a current scientific tool, GenBank. Lesson plans must be submitted to me no later than August 4th.

MSU educators, National Park Service resource managers, and other agency professionals will be joining the class to provide a multi-disciplinary perspective. The course will take place in Yellowstone National Park and on the MSU campus. Participants will camp in Yellowstone National Park July 21 and 22. Camping equipment can be rented inexpensively thorough REI in Bozeman. Participants should expect 1 or 2 short treks (4 miles or less) and be prepared to be outdoors in any type of weather. Breakfast and lunch will be provided; dinner in Yellowstone is the responsibility of each participant.

A class schedule and an equipment list will be posted. A course packet will be available prior to the course.

Meeting Place and Times

Class Lecture:  ABB 238. M 9:00 am- 5:30pm, T 8:30 – 10:30am , F 1:00 – 5:00pm
Class Lab: Gaines 18. R 2:30-5pm, F 9am - noon
Field Trip: Meet vans at ABB building. Depart T 10:15 am, Return R 2:00pm


Stephanie McGinnis, MS. Stephanie’s professional interests as an aquatic ecologist are focused on the conservation and restoration of freshwater ecosystems. Stephanie received a B.A. in both Biology and Environmental Studies from the University of Colorado in Boulder, Colorado and her M.S. in Biological Sciences from Montana State University. She is the Education and Outreach Coordinator for Montana Watercourse and the Assistant Director of the Montana Water Center.


A minimum of 2 years successful science teaching experience; enrolled in the Master of Science in Science Education degree at MSU, or by instructor approval; participants must hold a bachelors degree.

Target Audience

5 to 12 grade teachers with two or more years of successful science teaching experience

Tuition and Fees

 Program Fee $187.00
 Computer Fee$7.00
 Distributed Learning Fee$0.00

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.

Required Books/Materials

  • A course packet will be designed with required reading materials and provided by the instructor.

For More Information

contact Diana Paterson at or 406-994-5679.

How to Register

Register Online