Statewide Master Naturalist Courses

The Montana Master Naturalist Program is spreading across the state!  For those of you outside of the Missoula area, there are now several other options for getting your Montana Master Naturalist certification.

Billings Master Naturalist Course

When: March 6 – May 22, 2019
Wednesdays, 5:30-8:00 p.m.

Overview:  The Billings Montana Master Naturalist Program is designed for adults who want to deepen their knowledge of the natural world. Its curriculum is field-oriented and place-based, focusing on the ecosystems and landscapes of South-Central Montana—the mixed-grass prairies, mountain ranges, and river basins that define the area. We’ll explore everything from birds and insects to geology and plant ID. You’ll hone your naturalist skills as we practice journaling, animal tracking, and the art of observation.

The course meets weekly for 12 weeks on Wednesdays from 5:30 – 8pm (March 6 – May 22) and includes two Saturday field trips (April 27 and May 18).

Official Master Naturalist Certification is available from the Montana Natural History Center for an additional $100 (to be arranged in the second week of class). The course has been approved for 40 OPI credits. We are also pursuing approval for step-up credits with School District #2 and professional development credits with MSU-B’s extended campus.

“I loved the hands-on approach—I learned so much for lifetime learning, not just for immediate response. Loved this class and really looked forward to it each week.” ~a former Billings Master Naturalist student

Cost: $250 ($225 for Friends of the Montana Audubon Conservation Center). Master Naturalist certification available for an additional $100.

Registration: Click HERE for more information about the Montana Audubon Conservation Center, and HERE to register for the course.
Contact Heather at 406.294.5099 or by email at with any additional questions.

Glacier Institute Master Naturalist Course

When: June 24-28, 2019

Overview: The Master Naturalist course is designed to enrich the learner with a broad set of naturalist skills that demand a ready willingness to explore and learn. The core of this course will be developing skills to read the landscape. We’ll use big themes of biogeography, succession, and habitat to frame our knowledge. Through this five-day intensive course, participants will cultivate an ability to accurately interpret and understand the plants and animals whose presence tells the story of the landscape. Come prepared to work at developing these skills with the satisfaction of learning in one of the most scenic places in North America!

Cost:  $875 (the course fee includes four nights of lodging and all meals from Monday lunch through Friday lunch). Master Naturalist certification available for an additional $100.

Registration: Click HERE for more information and to register.


Swan Valley Connections Master Naturalist Course

When: July 11-16, 2019

Overview: Swan Valley Connections’ 6-day, immersive experience will expose participants to an observation-based study of natural history in the Crown of the Continent Ecosystem. Through an in-depth investigation of physiographic complexity, we will encounter a diversity of plant and animal communities living in various ecosystems supported by the unique landscape characteristics of the Swan Valley. Particular attention will be given to forest carnivores, threatened and endangered species, wetland ecology, aquatic systems, fire ecology, and biogeography of NW Montana.

Meals, lodging, and transportation provided during the course. 
SVC will also provide field guides and naturalist kits for use in the field. 

Cost: $825 for tuition, food, and lodging.
An additional $100 fee is required for Master Naturalist certification.

For more information or to register, call Lindsay @ 754.3137 or e-mail at

Helena Master Naturalist Course

When: 2019 dates TBD

Overview: Whether you are an accomplished scientist or just enjoy spending time in the out-of-doors, this class is for you! Course topics will include: field journaling, plant & animal identification, living with wildlife, and interpretive and citizen scientist skills. Classes will meet at Montana WILD and conclude with an overnight trip to FWP’s Beartooth Wildlife Management Area near Holter Lake. Participants will be required to complete a community service component to maintain their annual Master Naturalist Certification. Click here for the proposed class schedule.

Cost:  $245 for Montana Master Naturalist Certification through the Montana Natural History Center or $145 just for fun and education. Class size is limited to 15 participants. The course fee is refundable ONLY if cancellation is made a week prior to the first class session. No refunds will be issued for cancellations made after June 15th.

Registration: To register and for more information please contact:
Montana Discovery Foundation
2880 Skyway Dr.
Helena, MT  59602
Phone: 406.495.3718

Checks should be made to the MT Discovery Foundation.

See a general/sample schedule for the week here.