Master of Natural Science (MNS)

The Master of Natural Science degree program at Arizona State University is a three-year program designed for in-service science teachers seeking to enhance their career through interdisciplinary graduate training in physics, physical science, physics education or related sciences. MNS courses are open to in-service high school teachers who have completed two semesters of college physics and an introductory calculus course. Teachers may make up deficiencies in regularly scheduled courses. Courses are typically offered in summer sessions so as to be compatible with full-time appointments in the high school system nationwide. The program is designed to be completed in three summers. Since the MNS program must be interdisciplinary, students are expected to emphasize coursework in two or more areas of concentration (e.g. chemistry and physics). The MNS program is especially suited for individuals who desire professional training rather than research training. Participate in Arizona State University’s comprehensive summer graduate program for professional development of in-service teachers of physics, chemistry and physical science. The foundation is Modeling Instruction* (nine distinct Modeling Workshops). The Master of Natural Science degree program extends and deepens the Modeling Instruction program with eight courses in integrated science and contemporary physics. This unique graduate program has attracted 1000 teachers from all over the nation; 90% cite the desire to become a better teacher as their chief reason for participating.


  • Modeling Workshops in physics and chemistry are aligned with NGSS science practices.

  • All courses are relevant for the high school classroom: hands on, minds on.

  • Flexible: Three summer sessions; easy enrollment as non degree graduate student. No cohorts.

  • Low-cost on-campus housing can be arranged (group rate, private bedroom).

  • Financial aid for MNS degree candidates: 150% of in state tuition for residents of 16 western states WICHE; Federal Direct forgivable loans, TEACH grants.

"The MNS program distinguishes itself by attracting a motivated group of learners, providing useful and challenging courses, modeling the type of student-centered instruction promoted by the program’s develop-ers, supporting student-to-student and student-to-instructor collaboration and following up on the impact of the program as teachers return to their high school classrooms. Simply put, the MNS machinery is doing what it claims. - National Science Foundation internal grant evaluator

Prospective MNS Applicants 

Applications are accepted for summer admission only. The application deadline for full consideration April 15. Fall and spring admission occur under special circumstances.

To be eligible for admission to the MNS program, applicants must:

  • Have earned a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution
  • Have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in the last 60 hours of their first bachelor's degree program, or applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in an applicable master's degree program
  • The program is open to in-service high school teachers who have completed two semesters of college physics and an introductory calculus course.
  • International applicants must demonstrate English proficiency via the TOEFL, IELTS or PTE. More information regarding English proficiency and required scores can be found at:

Application Information

The entire admission process is electronic and is coordinated through the ASU Graduate Admissions. The entry link for application is Graduate Education's admissions page. All application materials must be submitted online, do not mail any documents to the Department of Physics. All official documents, transcripts and test scores should be sent to Graduate Admissions.

  1. Basic application and fee: .
  2. Statement of purpose outlining why you want to apply to the MNS program.
  3. Complete transcripts of educational work, to date. Transcripts should include the fall semester or winter quarter grades, if possible. Official transcripts must be sent directly to ASU Admission Services from the issuing institution's records office either by mail or through a secured electronic transcript service. For more information about transcripts please visit .  We will accept unofficial transcripts for review purposes but we cannot admit you into the program until official transcripts are received.
  4. Two letters of recommendation. You will be asked to enter the names and email addresses in the online application of two individuals who can recommend you to our MNS program. These letters should be written by faculty or professional colleagues who have supervised you for research or academic work. For international students, specific comments about ability with spoken English will be helpful.
  5. TOEFL (or equivalent) for non-native speakers. ASU requires international students to have a minimum TOELF score of 515 (PBT), 213 (CBT), or 83 (iBT).
  6. General GRE is not required. You may leave the exam date blank.

All official documents must be mailed to Graduate Admissions:

If sending by stamped mail:

Arizona State University
Graduate Admission Services
PO Box 871004
Tempe, AZ 85287-1004

If sending by Fedex, DHL or UPS:

Arizona State University
Graduate Admission Services
1150 East University Drive, Building C, Room 226
Tempe, AZ 85281

Financial Support

External funding is frequently available to pay for partial or full tuition for Arizona teachers.

Western Regional Graduate Program

MNS is a participating program of Western Regional Graduate Program which is open to all residents of 16 participating states (Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming). WRGP allows qualifying students to request the WRGP tuition rate when applying for admission directly to the graduate program. Applicants must meet all admission requirements and apply within University deadlines. Identify yourself as a "WICHE WRGP" applicant to be considered for the discounted tuition rate. Programs give a limited number of WRGP reduced tuition seats each year. Interested applicants wanting to be considered for the WRGP must have their application in no later than April 1 for summer admittance into the MNS program.

For more information on WICHE WRGP please visit

WRGP Application: Partial tuition scholarships may be available for WRGP MNS recipients; contact to inquire.

WRGP Application

Tuition Scholarships
The Modeling Instruction staff seek funding each year to pay for partial or full tuition for Arizona teachers. Application closes May 22, each year.

Other Ways to fund a Modeling Workshop and/or MNS degree:

  1.  Ask your school to pay with Federal Title II-A funds. Click here for a sample grant proposal to help you obtain funding for a Modeling Workshop.

  2. Apply to the Arizona Teachers Academy for a full-tuition scholarship, if you seek to qualify to teach dual enrollment physics or chemistry:

  3. Arizona certified teachers can apply to the Arizona Department of Education in 2019 to 2022 for up to three $2000 scholarships to take ASU graduate courses, to qualify to teach dual enrollment physics or chemistry. Apply at 

  4. Seek financial support from a foundation and/or community service organization. For more information, please see document below.  

  5. ASU Financial Aid/Scholarship Services for help with Federal TEACH grants and forgivable direct student loans.: 

More about ASU tuition and fees can be found at

Professional Licensure

ASU academic programs are designed to prepare students to apply for applicable licensure or certification in Arizona. Completion of an ASU program may not meet educational requirements for license or certification in another state. If you are planning to pursue professional licensure or certification in a state other than Arizona, it is strongly recommended that you visit the ASU professional licensure webpage for contact information of the appropriate licensing entity to seek information and guidance regarding licensure or certification requirements.

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