Please join us for this innovative cross-site research experience at Long Term Ecological Research sites: the Authentic Research Experience for Teachers at LTERs program.

Pairs of selected teachers will work with faculty and graduate students to conduct research and compare their experiences with teachers stationed at other LTER sites. We invite applications from full-time middle and high school teachers who teach STEM topics and live in Wisconsin, Oregon, California, and Alaska.

Learn more about the specific research opportunities on our projects page

All teachers selected as participants in ARETs will take part in the Data Literacy Using LTER Data Workshop Series offered by Dataspire, which fosters educators’ and students’ ability to engage confidently with data in their daily lives.

We encourage teachers to apply in pairs from the same school or school district, although this is not required.

Apply here. Have your resume and a cover letter that addresses why you are interested and what you hope to gain from this opportunity, and how you envision this experience fitting into your curriculum ready to attach to the application.

graphic version of key program dates

Key Dates for 2024

  • January 22, 2024: Application deadline
  • January 29, 2024: Decisions made
  • Late February 2024: Program orientation and introductions (virtual)
  • Mid-late March, exact date TBD: Orientation to individual LTER sites (virtual)
  • Last week of June 2024: Data Literacy using LTER Data Workshop Series
    (dates and times TBD):
  • July 2024: Dates for summer research experiences vary but will start after July 12, 2024.
    • For the Arctic LTER Site, expect to spend 2 weeks in the field, lab, and analytical activities, and developing classroom activities.
    • For the Andrews Forest LTER Site, field experience will be 2 weeks in a combination of field, lab, and analytical activities, and developing classroom activities.
    • For the Santa Barbara Coastal LTER, spend 2 weeks (July 15-26)  in a combination of field, lab, and analytical activities, and developing classroom activities.
  • Monthly virtual meetings during the school year to share results and develop related classroom activities and curricular materials.  The goal is to pilot materials in classrooms by May 2025.
  • Summer 2025: Cohort 2 teachers return to field sites for 2 weeks to explore  follow-up questions, extend understanding of the project. Cohort 2 teachers also attend a week-long workshop, aka Datapalooza, at the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS), where they learn about research conducted at other sites, develop data analytical skills, and exchange ideas for STEM learning activities.


  • $4,000 Stipend for summer 2024, $2,000 stipend for summer 2025
  • Travel costs and lodging covered at your field site
  • Funds for classroom supplies
  • Unparalleled experience working alongside scientists at some of the premier ecological research programs in the U.S.
  • Increase your confidence in using the science practices that are key elements of the Next Generation Science Standards and the Common Core Mathematics Standards
  • Get new ideas for engaging your students in authentic science practices 
  • Network with teachers from across the country with similar interests

For Questions

  • Teachers in Alaska, please email Amanda Morrison at
  • Teachers in Santa Barbara, CA please email Scott Simon at
  • Teachers in Wisconsin or Oregon, please email Kari O’Connell at