Located at 2001 Colorado Blvd in Denver, Colorado, the Denver Museum of Nature & Science (DMNS) is one of the leading resources for informal science education in the Rocky Mountain region. It offers various exhibitions, activities and programs that help visitors experience and enjoy the natural wonders of the state and the Earth.
One of the programs offered by the DMNS Is the Paleontology Certification Program. This is intended for those who want to learn paleontology and develop their skills in the study, collection, preparation and curation of fossils. You can choose from various options – Paleontology Certification, Paleontology Lab Specialization Certificate, Paleontology Field Specialization Certification, Fast Track to Field Option, and Lab Volunteer Option.
Paleontology Certification comprises eight courses that provide the introduction to the life’s history as revealed through fossil records and basic knowledge of the techniques and theories of paleontology. Introductory courses include Paleontology 101, Reading Colorado: An Introduction to Geology, Curation of Fossils, Paleontology of the Western Interior, and Evolution. Lecture and Lab course includes Vertebrate Paleontology I: Fishes to Birds, Vertebrate Paleontology II: Mammals, Invertebrate Paleontology I: Precambrian & Paleozoic, Invertebrate Paleontology II: Mesozoic & Cenozoic, and Paleobotany. There is also a research & writing course, comprising four lecture sessions of research methods and report writing.
If you are strongly interested in fossil preparation, get a Paleontology Lab Specialization Certification by completing a hands-on Laboratory Methods course. This comprises laboratory methods in paleontology, with eight lab sessions and a final exam. You must complete first your Basic Certificate before you can get the Paleontology Lab Specialization Certificate.
If you are particularly interested in field work, choose a Paleontology Field Specialization Certification by completing additional related classroom programs and taking part in six days of field work. This program requires that you have completed first the basic certificate. Under this program, classes offered are sedimentology and stratigraphy classes, with six lectures, lab sessions and two field trips; and Field Methods in Paleontology, comprising six field days or equivalent plus independent study time or equivalent.
Once you have completed the first three courses, you may register for the Field Methods in Paleontology course. You will be granted with a Certification for Field Specialization once you have completed the Paleontology Certificate. Classes offered by the DMNS are Paleontology 101, Reading Colorado: An Introduction to Geology, Sedimentology & Stratigraphy, and Field Methods in Paleontology.
If you have the interest in volunteer opportunities in the DMNS Schlessman Family Paleontology Lab, complete the Laboratory Methods in Paleontology Course for you to qualify. This program offers laboratory methods in paleontology, comprising eight lab sessions and a final exam.