Get Recognized, Advance Your STEM Teaching Skills

NISE Micro Certificates and online courses are a unique professional development opportunity designed to meet educators' needs for "just on time," highly targeted professional development. Three hours long and $39 per course, each 5E online course can be completed at your leisure. Take two courses in a strand to earn a verified digital badge to add your to portfolio and distinguish yourself as a STEM educator. After, apply your Micro Certificates towards earning a National Certificate for STEM Teaching.

Micro Certificates


Argumentation Online Course

Learn protocols that help students positively and productively develop, analyze, critique, and defend arguments. Create a customized tool to develop appropriate goals for your students’ use of argumentation while outlining strategies to accomplish these goals.

Examine current understanding and implementation of the Claim-Evidence-Reasoning (C-E-R) framework and develop practical. classroom tools and resources. Develop a customized tool for integrating C-E-R into instruction across content areas.


5E Instructional Model Online Course

Learn how to design lessons that pique student interest while developing conceptual understanding through hands-on exploration. Develop a standards-aligned lesson using the 5E model, which can be applied in the development of learning experiences across content areas.

Examine why “doing” science is essential to ”learning” science. Learn how to refine existing classroom materials and resources so higher degrees of inquiry may be achieved. Create a planning tool that facilitates the development of standards-aligned, inquiry-based investigations.


Engineering Solutions Online Course

Explore the role of the Engineering Design Process (EDP) to address real-world problems while learning how to realistically integrate the EDP into your classroom instruction and develop students’ mastery in its use. Create a customized tool for planning instruction with the EDP.

Learn how to embed various technological tools and instructional strategies into your lessons to increase student engagement and learning. Develop a customized tool for planning technology-integrated, standards-aligned lessons.


Cooperative Learning Online Course

Examine current implementation of cooperative learning in classrooms as a means of increasing students’ future success in post-secondary careers. Develop a customized tool to plan for the purposeful teaching of social skills, protocols, and tools for collaboration in the classroom.

Learn the student, classroom, and teacher characteristics that are essential to the effective implementation of Project-Based Learning (PBL) and make targeted decisions about which of those need to be addressed to achieve student success. Develop a customized PBL plan using a seven-step process.


Questioning Strategies Online Course

Explore several educational taxonomies and questioning techniques that will foster students’ critical thinking and lead to more productive classroom discussions. Develop a personalized planning tool that focuses on developing multi-leveled questions and intentionally selecting discussion formats aligned to grade-level standards to stimulate students’ thinking and participation in robust discourse.

Examine how to intentionally plan for instruction that uses probing questions to identify and understand students’ misconceptions while fostering their skills to begin identifying their own misunderstandings. Create a customized tool for addressing student misconceptions.


Reading in STEM Online Course

Explore how to use primary and secondary text resources with students while implementing a variety of comprehension strategies aligned to varying purposes for reading. Develop a customized tool to support the use of reading resources for STEM learning.

Learn how to use a variety of writing strategies to help K-12 students become better writers of informational text. Create a customized planning tool to support writing integration across subjects.


NISE’s free STEM portfolio is the ideal place to showcase your STEM teaching awards and recognitions. Each Micro Certificate you earn will appear on your STEM portfolio, validating your efforts and commitment to improving your STEM teaching craft; furthermore, your STEM portfolio earns you recognition as an NISE graduate, engendering a connection between you and fellow NISE alumni to continue to grow personally and professionally. Digital badges from your portfolio can also be added to your email signature line, LinkedIn, and resume to distinguish yourself among fellow educators.