Columbia University in the City of New York

Neuroethics Teacher Institute

Teachers collaborate in a recent workshop (Credit: Steve Myaskovsky for Columbia's Zuckerman Institute)

Professional development for middle school educators

Applications are open for our free Summer Neuroethics Teacher Institute! Earn a stipend of $1,000 and up to 24 CTLE credit hours!

Are you a middle school educator looking to incorporate more neuroscience into your classroom? Do you find your students seeking scientific evidence as they discuss current events? Join a cohort of 12 educators this summer to deepen your neuroscience knowledge and co-create curricula to help your middle school students tackle big questions at the intersection of science and society! 

Click here to apply by May 1, 2024

During a 4-day series of workshops July 15-18th, participants will:
• Strengthen their knowledge on neuroscience research
• Explore strategies for teaching controversial topics at the intersection of neuroscience, ethics, and society
• Design interactive, evidence-based curricula for their own classrooms to promote critical thinking and the application of neuroscience principles in real-world contexts
• Create a community of practice with educators from middle schools across New York City

In this summer's workshop, teachers will explore one neuroscience and society topic a day for the first three days, and participate in interactive exercises to dissect and digest the topic. The final day will be devoted to lesson plan development and include opportunities for teachers to share their ideas, feedback, and potential activities to engage future classes of students. Participants will be dedicated time, space, and access to experts in order to prepare themselves and their students for informed and thoughtful discourse. 

The Neuroethics Teacher Institute program is free, and participants who complete all four days of the workshop will earn a stipend of $1,000 and up to 24 CTLE credit hours.

Applications are due by May 1, 2024. Click here to apply!

Program Details

When: July 15-18, 2024 (Monday - Thursday) 10am - 4pm. Lunch will be provided.
• Monday, July 15: Addressing neurodiversity with classroom design (Capstone: Science-based redesign of the classroom)
• Tuesday, July 16: The role of generative AI in schools (Capstone: Stakeholder role-play debate)
• Wednesday, July 17: Screen time and the developing teen brain (Capstone: School PSA (zine, video, comic, etc.))
• Thursday, July 18: Bringing these topics into your classroom (Capstone: Participants create custom lesson plans for their students inspired by the content and approaches explored in the previous workshop days)
• Summit:
Cohort to reconvene for a 1-day summit 6-12 months after the workshop week to share experiences and insights from classroom implementation

Where: This program will take place in the Education Lab on the first floor of Columbia University’s Zuckerman Institute (Jerome L. Greene Science Center, 605 W. 129th St, New York, NY 10027).

• Dr. Diana Li, Associate Director of Education & Training Initiatives, Columbia’s Zuckerman Institute
• Teacher Facilitator from NYC DOE will be announced soon!
• Various guest experts who are Columbia University faculty, postdoctoral scholars, and graduate students

Additional Information

This professional development opportunity is open to all classroom educational staff in the New York City area including all teachers and teaching assistants/paraprofessionals who work directly with middle school students (ie. grades 6-8). We seek to admit a cohort of 12 educators for the 2024 Summer Neuroethics Teacher Institute. 

Due to Zuckerman’s Institute commitment to achieving the goal of helping to reduce socioeconomic disparities in the STEM, preference will be given to individuals who meet one or more of the following criteria:
• Title 1 Eligible School
• Upper Manhattan/South Bronx schools
• Teachers in STEM subjects and/or STEM-focused schools
• Teachers who see themselves directly using this material in their classroom

Selection for the program will be determined first by these preference criteria. Because of limited workshop capacity, our team will let you know by June 1, 2024 if you have secured a spot in the 2024 program.

If you have any questions, you can email: [email protected]

This program is generously supported by a grant from the Dana Foundation.