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Dive into your underwater adventure with just one click!

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Ways to Save

Memberships, discounts, promotions & more

Ways to Save: See Discounts

Animals Up-Close

Encounters with the animals that call Mystic Aquarium home

Animals Up-Close: Learn More

High School and College Experiential Learning Opportunities

For years, Mystic Aquarium has been included in college-accredited course outlines of academic institutions including UCONN, University of Rhode Island, Tufts University, and many others. We offer a variety of opportunities for students and institutions of higher education.


Enhance your syllabus with unique college-level classes at the Aquarium or live, virtual presentations broadcast into your class space by Mystic Aquarium Scientists. Note that significantly discounted admissions are offered to academic groups.

  • Live, virtual presentation topics include the latest research in Long Island Sound ecology, marine conservation biology, and marine mammals.
  • Researcher for a Day (RFAD)s are popular 90-minute lab intensive classes offered at the Aquarium. Topics include:
    • Microbiology (hematology focused)
    • Molecular Biology
    • Nutrition
    • Biomedical (horseshoe crab focused)

Each 90-minute RFAD costs $150 for up to 25 students in addition to discounted admissions.

  • Maximize your trip and discounted admissions by combining multiple classes to make a day-long program. Other college-level courses available include:
    • Comparative Evolution
    • Population Genetics & Species Survivorship
    • Marine Animal Strandings & Veterinary Sciences

Short Courses

Mystic Aquarium has worked with several colleges and universities to design short courses specifically catering to their course goals, including for gap-year students and those in need of alternative learning strategies. Below are popular options previously designed.

  • Scientific Inquiry – experiential learning designed to continue development of student proficiency in scientific inquiry, laboratory and field techniques, and scientific writing
  • Field Conservation – brings students out in the field, actively participating in habitat restoration projects of Mystic Aquarium and our partners
  • Lab Skills Development – advances students’ scientific skills from observational studies and microscope use to field based ecology studies and nutritional analyses

Full-Term Courses

Mystic Aquarium has also designed full-term courses that are now offered through such institutions as University of Rhode Island, UCONN and Mitchell College. Below are current course options. 

  • Seminar on Marine Mammals – scientists discuss natural history, evolution, anatomy, physiology, husbandry, and conservation of marine mammals emphasizing current research 
  • Seminar in Marine Biodiversity and Conservation – experts highlight key topics and state-of-the-art research in marine biodiversity and conservation
  • Behind the Glass – innovatively engages students with STEM professionals, careers, and pathways; enriched with online learning, field programs, Aquarium visits, and outreach to achieve project goals


Mystic Aquarium offers mini-conferences each year, including those listed below. Keep an eye on our events page for future offerings. 

  • Animal Care & Vet Conference – work directly alongside Mystic Aquarium’s Animal Care and Veterinary team to go behind the scenes and participate in hands-on workshops and labs.
  • Animal Training & Husbandry Conference – shadow animal care staff to understand the roles operant conditioning and psychology in caring for the Aquarium’s resident animals.

Specialized Opportunities

Mystic Aquarium’s Milne Ocean Science and Conservation Center can also serve as a host facility for your conference, workshop or other special event including:

  • Group Leadership & Team Building Events
  • Alumni Events
  • Evaluation and Research Collaboration Opportunities
  • Broader Impact and Educational Outreach Opportunities

Please fill out the request form linked below, and a member of the Education Department will contact you to discuss academic opportunities and costs.

Contact us