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 the link below for the 2017-18 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 - (4/23 - 6/4/18)

Our Concrete Jungle
Faces From the Past - NEW COURSE!



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 - (4/23 - 6/4/18)

Mechanisms of Evolution
Conservation Biology


Physical Science Tracks:

Session 5 - (4/23 - 6/4/18)

Dynamic Earth



Support for Youth Initiatives is provided by The Peter and Carmen Lucia Buck Foundation.

Support for the Science Research Mentoring Program at the American Museum of Natural History is provided by Christopher C. Davis, The Shelby Cullom Davis Charitable Fund; The Pinkerton Foundation; the Bezos Family Foundation; the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation; the Solon E. Summerfield Foundation; Inc.; and the Adolph and Ruth Schnurmacher Foundation.

Complimentary test preparation and college admissions support for program participants is generously provided by Kaplan Test Prep.

Upcoming Offerings

A bright image of Saturn.

Secrets of the Solar System - Science Research Course

February 27, 2018 - April 19, 2018

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

February 27, 2018 - April 19, 2018

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.   

default image

Genes in Space - Exploratory Course

Learn what PCR experiments can teach us about identifying genes, and design an experiment that could be entered into the Genes in Space Competition. Your project, if accepted, could be conducted by astronauts living on the International Space station!

default image

Linguistic Anthropology - Exploratory Course

In this course, you will examine how scientists use sound to track the evolution of language, languages in danger of disappearing, and the effect of rapid technological advancement on the future of communication. 

Dynamic Earth

Dynamic Earth - Science Research Course

April 23, 2018 - June 4, 2018

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. 

Pleiades M45 Open Star Cluster

Stars - Science Research Course

April 23, 2018 - June 4, 2018

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. 

Comparative Genomics

Our Concrete Jungle - Exploratory Course

April 23, 2018 - June 4, 2018

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.

Research Methods in Conservative Biology

Conservation Biology - Science Research Course

April 24, 2018 - May 31, 2018

This course will introduce the principles and techniques of conservation biology, the causes of species extinctions and how the environment is changed over time by human activity.

default image

Faces From the Past - Exploratory Course

April 27, 2018 - June 1, 2018

In this course, we will examine fossil skull casts from human relatives to sculpt facial reconstructions on 3D-printed skulls. We will examine differences in skulls, create detailed facial musculature, apply tissue-depth markers, and make interpretations about where they lived and how they died. 

Past Offerings

Wonderful Universe

Wonderful Universe - Science Research Course

February 26, 2018 - April 18, 2018

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.

default image

Archaeology of Tomorrow - Research Course

February 26, 2018 - April 18, 2018

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.

Stars - Science Research Course

Cosmology - Exploratory Course

January 5, 2018 - February 9, 2018

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 5, 2018 - February 9, 2018

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.