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The Harvard Museum of Natural History offers a range of videos for inquisitive learners of all ages, both inside and outside of the classroom.  


Browse nearly 100 videos of lectures recorded by the museum since 2009. Ideal for professional development.


The following short video sets (about three minutes long) are ideal for introducing students to specific topics.



Earth and Planetary Sciences  (2 video sets)

Plate Tectonics (7 videos)

View short informational videos about plate tectonics—how it works, its effects on the surface geology of our planet, and related research by Harvard geologists.

Arctic Geology (6 videos)

Short informational videos about Harvard research in the Arctic—unanswered questions, new findings, and the personal profiles of researchers and students who work there.


Evolution (5 videos)

A History of Ideas

This video presents milestones in the history of evolutionary thought, highlighting the contributions of key Harvard figures including: Asa Gray, Ernst Mayr, Stephen Jay Gould, Richard Lewontin, and Edward O. Wilson.

Current Research

This video samples a wide range of contemporary researchers and research projects in evolutionary biology.

Assembling the Tree of Life

This video provides an overview of new and on-going research at Harvard's Museum of Comparative Zoology dedicated to assembling an evolutionary tree of life.

Scott Edwards, Ornithologist

Harvard Professor and Curator, Scott Edwards, takes us into the field and behind-the-scenes in the ornithology collection at the Museum of Comparative Zoology in this video about his research on the evolutionary biology of birds.

Chris Marx, Microbiologist

This video profiles exciting new research by Harvard Professor Christopher Marx, who is conducting experiments that guide and track evolutionary change in the microscopic world of bacteria.


Fish Biology

Take a Tour of Harvard's Fish Collection (3 videos)

Take a tour of Harvard University’s world-class fish collection and learn how it is used to study fish diversity and biology.

Visit Harvard's Lauder Laboratory (4 videos)

Visit the Lauder Laboratory where Harvard biologists partner with engineers from other universities to study fish movement and develop swimming underwater robots.


Mollusks (2 videos)

Harvard Research on Mollusks

This video features the research of Harvard Professor Gonzalo Giribet and the post-docs, students, and staff of his lab at Harvard University. It also profiles Harvard University's large research collection of mollusks including hundreds of thousands of bivalves, gastropods and cephalopods.

MRI and CT Imaging of Mollusks

This video shows MRI and CT scans used to create 3-D images of mollusk bodies so that scientists can study them without using dissection or other destructive techniques. The scans shown here were developed by Post-doctoral Fellow Alex Ziegler along with colleagues at Harvard's Center for Brain Science and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht in Germany.


New England Forests (7 video sets)

A History of New England’s Forests (1 video)

This video provides an overview of the landscape history of New England, from European settlement to the present, and explains how it has shaped our modern forest.

How Do Forests Work? (3 videos)

Trees are essential components of forests, but a forest is more than a collection of trees. These videos animate the flow of water and nutrients through a tree and describe how forests work, including the processes whereby forest ecosystems help recycle carbon and shelter and purify water.

Our Changing Forests (5 videos)

New England’s forests are living laboratories studied by scientists. These videos feature Harvard botanists, ecologists, and atmospheric scientists measuring how forests circulate carbon through the biosphere, interact with climate, and respond to invasive species.

Old Growth Forest (1 video)

Virgin old growth forests once blanketed the New England landscape, however today old growth forest is a tiny, but important, component of our regional forests. This video describes the characteristics of old growth and the rich community of plants, animals, and fungi found here.

Wetlands in the Forest (1 video)

From forest ponds, to bogs and temporary spring pools, New England's forest wetlands are an important link between land and water. This video describes why wetlands are important as habitat for wildlife and to filter and protect our water supply.

Fungi in the Forest (5 videos)

The fungi—including various mushrooms, molds, and yeasts—are critical players in the forest ecosystem. These videos explore the various roles of fungi as parasites, decomposers, and cooperative partners with trees, and feature the research of Harvard scientist Anne Pringle.

Life on a Rock: The Lichens (3 videos)

Lichens grow abundantly on the surface of rocks, trees, and even man-made objects. These videos explain the unusual biology of lichens, show their astounding diversity, and profile the field research of a Harvard biologist who studies them.