Nebraska Math & Science Summer Institutes 2021

2021 Course Catalog

Please note that our courses are marked as either Online (Synchronous) or Online (Asynchronous). For these purposes, synchronous means online meetings with the instructor and the whole class at once (on at least part of the dates listed), and asynchronous means working at your pace, like a typical online course that UNL offers.

Courses such as TEAC 800, TEAC 801 and TEAC 813M are also options for teachers this summer, but these courses do not qualify for the 20% tuition discount or additional NMSSI Fellowships.


NMSSI Course Catalog Filters
All Courses|Math|ScienceAll Grades|K|1|2|3|4|5|6|7|8|9|10|11|12
14 courses selected. The catalog of courses displayed below has been limited by the selected filters.


Click course numbers for full course information Primary Audience Highlight primary audience Secondary Audience Highlight secondary audience

NMSSI Courses for Mathematics Teachers

MATH 802T - Functions, Algebra & Geometry

Audience: K123456789101112
Credit Hours: 3

Locations and Dates:
Online (Asynchronous): July 12-Aug 12
Online (Synchronous): June 21-25 and June 28-July 2, 8am-noon (Zoom, with breaks)
This course offers an introduction to the concept of a function and addresses both algebra and geometry topics. The course will deepen teachers’ understanding of the concepts of variable and function, problem solving, measurement, and geometric modeling, with emphasis on the connections between these concepts. Math 802T is part of our effort to assist teachers as they develop a strong foundation in mathematics focused on the mathematics that must be understood deeply to teach well at the middle grades.

MATH 804T - Experimentation, Conjecture & Reasoning

Audience: K123456789101112
Credit Hours: 3

Location and Dates:
Online (Synchronous): June 7-11 and June 14-18, 1pm-5pm (Zoom, with breaks)
This course focuses on problem solving, reasoning and proof and communicating mathematics. The overall goal for this course is to bring participants to the next level in the development of their mathematical habits of mind: A person who is an effective mathematical thinker has a toolbox of skills and knowledge to experiment, conjecture, reason, and ultimately solve problems. Sound habits of mind are marked by great flexibility of thinking and the strong belief that precise exposition of solutions is important. Possible topics include the Pythagorean Theorem, golden rectangles, Platonic solids, Fibonacci numbers, the Art Gallery Theorem, Symmetry and Shifts, counting, probability and Bayes Theorem.

MATH 805T - Discrete Math for Teachers

Audience: K123456789101112
Credit Hours: 3

Location and Dates:
Online (Synchronous): June 21-25 and June 28-July 2, 1pm-5pm (Zoom, with breaks)
This course is designed to deepen knowledge of discrete mathematics as it relates to topics covered in middle through high school curricula. Many of the course topics are introduced through "hands-on" explorations including methods of counting, graph theory (networking) and voting theory, which is particularly relevant in an election year. The course also develops an understanding of the role of precise mathematical language, reasoning, and proof in the development of discrete mathematics. The exploratory exercises in the course provide useful vehicles for promoting communication as groups will collaborate to explore problems and present various solutions.

MATH 806T - Number Theory & Cryptology for Teachers

Audience: K123456789101112
Credit Hours: 3

Locations and Dates:
Online (Asynchronous): May 24-July 9 (note the change in the start date)
Online (Synchronous): July 12-16, 1pm-5pm, and July 19-23, 8am-noon (Zoom, with breaks)
This course focuses on basic number theory results which are needed to understand the number theoretic RSA cryptography algorithm (an encryption algorithm which is in use today to secure information sent via the internet). The course emphasizes connections to middle level mathematics and promotes a deep understanding of the integers and their properties. Elementary methods for encoding and decoding are introduced to elucidate the nature of cryptology. These methods are readily adaptable as enrichment activities in the classroom.

MATH 807T - Using Math to Understand Our World

Audience: K123456789101112
Credit Hours: 3

Location and Dates:
Online (Synchronous): June 28-July 2
8am-5pm (Zoom, with breaks)
This course will examine the mathematics underlying several socially relevant questions from a variety of academic disciplines. Mathematical models of problems will be constructed and studied using a variety of topics and basic skills in algebra, functions, statistics and probability. Sources will include original documentation whenever possible (such as government data, reports and research papers) in order to provide a sense of the very real role that mathematics plays in society.

Math 807T is not open to teachers who have completed Math 809: Mathematical Modeling.

MATH 810T - Algebra for Algebra Teachers

Audience: K123456789101112
Credit Hours: 3

Location and Dates:
Online (Synchronous): June 7-11 and June 14-18, 8am-noon (Zoom, with breaks)
The main goal of the course is to help Algebra I teachers better understand the conceptual underpinnings of school algebra, and how to leverage that understanding into improved classroom practice. Emphasis is placed on developing the habits of mind of a mathematical thinker.

SOCI 898 - Using Systems Thinking in Network Science

Audience: K123456789101112
Credit Hours: 3

Location and Dates:
Online (Synchronous): June 7-11 and June 14-18, 8am-noon (Zoom, with breaks)
This course is open to any teachers of math, science or computer science, with the primary audience of middle level teachers. Full tuition fellowships will be available from the Worlds of Connections grant. This course is intended for STEM teachers and will apply concepts of network science to systems and system models; explore activities designed to help students understand systems, systems models, and how network science concepts can reveal how systems operate; understand modeling situations and careers that intersect with network science; understand key concepts and terms related to systems and system models; apply concepts of systems and system models to teacher professional networks, student networks, and how network connections impact teacher and student learning and risk-taking; and explore developmentally appropriate phenomena with wide relevance to secondary students for applying systems and systems models.

TEAC 807A - Equitable Practices in Mathematics Education: Identity, Access, & Equity in Mathematics Education

Audience: K123456789101112
Credit Hours: 3

Location and Dates:
Online (Synchronous): July 5-9 and July 12-16, 8am-noon (Class will have asynchronous online work from 8-9 and 11-12 and will meet on Zoom from 9-11)
The purpose of this course is to learn more about yourself and the connections you may or may not have with mathematics, in working towards collective action upon the world. This class will explore your own identity with and without mathematics in relation to others. Access and equity will be discussed in order to understand pathways and barriers to identity formation within paradigms of mathematical learning, teaching and being. This class will serve as a reminder for all of us of the importance of centering and acknowledging identity in mathematics education.

TEAC 808G - Improvement of Instruction: Manipulatives

Audience: K123456789101112
Credit Hours: 3

Location and Dates:
Online (Asynchronous and Synchronous): May 24-28, asynchronous online; June 1-4, live web conferencing from 10am-3pm CDT
Coming soon

TEAC 848G - Introduction to Curriculum Studies: Mathematics Curriculum Analysis & Design

Audience: K123456789101112
Credit Hours: 3

Location and Dates:
Online (Synchronous): June 7-11 and June 14-18, 8am-noon (Class will have asynchronous online work from 8-9 and 11-12 and will meet on Zoom from 9-11)
This course will have two primary goals. The first will be to understand the research on mathematics curriculum and the implications this has for classroom practice. The second goal will be to develop the skills to analyze written mathematics curriculum materials in order to support the use of and adaptation of curriculum in order to meet the needs of each and every student.
NMSSI Courses for Science Teachers

ASTR 898 - Phenomena of Planetary Satellites

Audience: K123456789101112
Credit Hours: 3

Location and Dates:
Online (Synchronous): June 21-25 and June 28-July 2, 10am-noon and 1-3 pm – Email Kelcey Gabriel for a permission code.
This is a professional development course aimed at middle school and high school teachers. It will survey phenomena related to moons in our solar system. Although Earth’s moon will receive the largest focus, we will also explore the moons of other planets in our solar system. The phenomena to be explored include phases; eclipses; tides and tidal heating; orbital dynamic processes such as circularization of an orbit and synchronous rotation; and resonance with other objects. We will also explore sufficient planetary geology to discuss interesting characteristics of the moons. Special attention will be given to the 2017 eclipse and what was learned related to instructional pedagogy as well as informal science. We will use the lessons learned to plan similar efforts related to the upcoming eclipse of April 2024. Although the focus of the course is on science content, we will make use of multiple interactive pedagogies commonly used in college courses and explore and discuss the underlying motivations, requirements, strengths, and weaknesses of each. The pedagogies include computer simulation usage; desktop planetarium usage; peer instruction; lecture tutorials; and ranking, sorting, and matching tasks.
Email Kelcey Gabriel for a permission code.

BIOS 897 - Special Topics: Evolution in Action

Audience: K123456789101112
Credit Hours: 3

Location and Dates:
Online (Synchronous): July 5-9 and July 12-16, 1pm-5pm (Zoom, with breaks)
This graduate course for science teachers will review major evolutionary principles, investigate the importance of the Nature of Science in the teaching and learning of evolutionary biology, and help teachers build a framework for developing an inquiry-based approach to teaching evolutionary biology.

GEOS 898 - Weather, Climate and Climate Change

Audience: K123456789101112
Credit Hours: 3

Location and Dates:
Online (Synchronous): June 21-25 and June 28-July 2, 1:30-3:30pm (Zoom)
This course will cover the scientific principles that govern our planet's weather and climate, and will demonstrate ways to teach these concepts to students using experiments and observations. Participants will leave the course with the confidence, knowledge and resources to teach their students about weather, climate, and climate change.

SOCI 898 - Using Systems Thinking in Network Science

Audience: K123456789101112
Credit Hours: 3

Location and Dates:
Online (Synchronous): June 7-11 and June 14-18, 8am-noon (Zoom, with breaks)
This course is open to any teachers of math, science or computer science, with the primary audience of middle level teachers. Full tuition fellowships will be available from the Worlds of Connections grant. This course is intended for STEM teachers and will apply concepts of network science to systems and system models; explore activities designed to help students understand systems, systems models, and how network science concepts can reveal how systems operate; understand modeling situations and careers that intersect with network science; understand key concepts and terms related to systems and system models; apply concepts of systems and system models to teacher professional networks, student networks, and how network connections impact teacher and student learning and risk-taking; and explore developmentally appropriate phenomena with wide relevance to secondary students for applying systems and systems models.