Every year, the After School Program (ASP) offers courses to New York City high school students interested in the sciences. There are courses in anthropology, astrophysics, earth science, genetics, biodiversity, and more. Each course makes use of the Museum's unique resources through hall visits, lab and collections tours, talks and lectures by scientists, and hands-on activities.

ASP offers multiple sessions throughout the school year. Each session is six weeks long, and courses meet once or twice a week from 4:30 - 6:30 PM. Students may attend only one course per session. We accept students regardless of citizenship or immigration status.

All After School Program Exploratory and Science Research courses are offered free of charge!



Within these content areas, we offer two types of courses, Exploratory and Science Research. To Learn more about any of the courses listed below please follow the link in the course title.

Click here for the 2016-2017 Exploratory and Science Research Course Calendar


Exploratory AMNH courses allow students to engage their diverse interests through in-depth, “elective-style” coursework. Exploratory AMNH allows our scientists, educators and students the chance to explore science in unique and surprising ways. Any New York City high school student may take one or more exploratory courses throughout the school year.

Session 5 - (4/24 - 6/5)

Our Concrete Jungle
Life Beyond Earth

Session 4 - (2/27 - 4/7)

Invisible Bodies: Friend or Foe?
Anthropology of Food


Research AMNH courses are intensive 6-week courses that introduce students to the fundamentals behind the science practiced at the Museum. Courses cover a variety of topics including anthropology, astrophysics, conservation science, and evolutionary biology and focus on core scientific theories, concepts, and practices. Each Research AMNH course is co-taught by a Museum scientist and a Museum educator and are designed to prepare students for the possibility of conducting authentic scientific research through a partner program, the Science Research Mentoring Program (SRMP). Please note that completion of three Research AMNH courses is a requirement for SRMP, but that completion of prerequisites does not guarantee acceptance into SRMP.


Science Research courses are open to students in 10-12th grade (public, private, and homeschool).


Life Science Tracks:

Session 5 - (4/24 - 6/5)

Research Methods in Conservation Biology
Mechanisms of Evolution

Session 4 - (2/27 - 4/7)

Archaeology of Tomorrow
Tree of Life


Physical Science Tracks:

Session 5 - (4/24 - 6/5)

Dynamic Earth

Session 4 - (2/27 - 4/7)

Wonderful Universe
Secrets of the Solar System




The Museum's Youth Initiatives Programming is generously supported by the leadership contribution 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Upcoming Offerings

Prep 1

Microfossils - Exploratory Course

Tiny fossils can hold giant secrets when we use the right tools to uncover them. Join the museum to work with and analyze never before touched specimens from our paleontology collection with the latest digital technology. Find out what single-celled marine organisms dating back to the Paleozoic era can tell us about mass extinctions and ocean pollution. Get hands-on with digital modeling, scanning, microscopy and 3D printing, and get up close and personal with the smallest fossils you can find!

Wonderful Universe

Wonderful Universe - Science Research Course

This class will introduce and discuss the physical laws and principles that make the Universe what it is, from gravity to electromagnetism to quantum mechanics. We will meet some bizarre and unfamiliar objects along the ride, such as pulsars, cosmic rays, and dark matter.

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Archaeology of Tomorrow - Research Course

Explore how the study of material culture is changing as satellites, 3D scanners, and digital museums gain use in the field, and gain hands on experience to see how technology is teaching us about the past.

Introduction to Physical Sciences

Secrets of the Solar System - Science Research Course

This class will take you on a grand tour of the solar system, from Mercury and the moons of Saturn, to asteroids and comets. How did such a diversity of worlds come to be? Like space detectives, we will follow the clues and try to unravel the secrets of the solar system’s formation and evolution.

Tree of LIfe

Tree of Life - Science Research Course

This course will explain how living organisms are related through the Tree of Life. With hands-on activities, hall and museum collection visits, and laboratory dissections students will learn how scientists organize biodiversity into classification systems using morphological and molecular data.   

Microbial Warriors Battle Digestive Disease

Invisible Bodies - Exploratory Course

Find out how some of the hardiest life forms on the planet can cause disease, jump from body to body, and compete with other microorganisms to survive virtually everywhere you (don’t) look!

Dynamic Earth

Dynamic Earth - Science Research Course

April 24, 2017 - June 5, 2017

In this Earth and Planetary Science course students will learn about the latest research conducted at the Museum through interactions with scientists, lectures, hall visits and hands-on activities. Our goal will be to understand the ongoing processes that transform our unique world by looking at how Earth was formed, why and how events such as earthquakes, volcanoes and climate change occur, and much more.

Comparative Genomics

Our Concrete Jungle - Exploratory Course

April 24, 2017 - June 5, 2017

Our class will investigate NYC’s natural history from a pre-colonial Eden to concrete jungle, learn the skills of ecological research, and roam the Halls of the Museum (after hours!). We will visit Central Park, Inwood Park, and the shores of the Hudson River to learn about the diversity of animals and plants living right on our doorstep. Our class will also discuss what is needed to improve our NYC environment as we debate current conservation issues, including climate change resilience, environmental justice, hydrofracking, and urban re-wilding.

Pleiades M45 Open Star Cluster

Stars - Science Research Course

April 25, 2017 - June 1, 2017

This class will introduce you to the variety of stars out there, from white dwarves to red giants, and G-type stars, like our Sun, to recently discovered brown dwarf stars that are changing our thoughts on what a star even is. 


Life Beyond Earth - Exploratory Course

April 28, 2017 - June 2, 2017

Are we alone in the Universe? This question has intrigued humans ever since we had the courage to look skyward. Explore the science of categorizing and searching for life in the cosmos.

Past Offerings

Stars - Science Research Course

Cosmology - Exploratory Course

January 13, 2017 - February 17, 2017

Cosmology is the study of the Universe as a whole – what it is, what's in it, how it came to be, and what the ultimate fate of it is.  Today, Cosmologists study things like the Big Bang, Dark Energy, and the shape of the Universe.  There are also cosmologies from other cultures and parts of the world, which describe the heavens in relation to their view of the cosmos.  In this class, you'll learn about both aspects of cosmology – see how different cultures represent their cosmologies through exhibits from around the Museum, and learn about how scientists study the Universe and what we have learned (and what we don't know!).

Borokua Explore21 Coral

Marine Biology - Exploratory Course

January 13, 2017 - February 17, 2017

In this course, students will learn about marine invertebrates and biodiversity through the field research and scientific expertise of scientists working at the Museum. The course will cover marine ecosystems as well the major groups of marine life and their evolutionary relationships. Class activities will include dissections, observing marine specimens through microscopy, exploring marine life displays in Museum halls, cladistics and the study of evolution, as well as meeting with scientists. In addition, this course will allow students to develop their English proficiency. This will be achieved by having class discussions, group work, class presentations and vocabulary lessons. All the lectures and activities will be lead by bilingual instructors and scientists.

Comparative Genomics

Molecular Genetics - Science Research Course

January 4, 2017 - February 15, 2017

This course will cover genetics and genomics, with a focus on understanding the composition of the genome. Students will learn what is in the genome, how mutations arise, and how variation in the genome impacts evolution and natural selection. Through a series of projects, we will study how Museum scientists use genetic information to study the history of life on earth and the conservation of endangered species.


Politics, People, and Pathogens - Science Research Course

January 4, 2017 - February 15, 2017

Using the tools on anthropology, you will uncover how history, geography, and our own culture can affect how we treat malaria, HIV, guinea worm and other tropical diseases in the developing world, and what you can do to stop their spread.


Human Origins - Science Research Course

November 7, 2016 - December 19, 2016

Trace the path of human evolution through in-depth discussions, hands-on activities, and visits to Museum halls that plot the history of humankind.