The Science Division aspires to make the world a better place through the process of scientific discovery

The Science Division grows and cares for a world-class natural history collection composed of 4.3 million artifacts and specimens, conducts scientific research with robust and diverse community participation, and conveys accurate, compelling stories that connect the past, present, and future. Our core scientific competencies are anthropology, earth sciences, health sciences, space sciences, and zoology. The Museum collections contain scientifically and culturally significant objects in archaeology, ethnology, geology, paleontology, health sciences, zoology and archives. While generally focused on the Rocky Mountain West, the collections also contain objects that bring the world to Denver and provide a broader intellectual and scientific context for the regional collections.

Science Division staff members author dozens of scientific publications every year, published in well-regarded, peer-reviewed books and journals. Click here for details on the attention our research is receiving across the world.

The Denver Museum of Nature & Science does not provide appraisal services.  Please visit the American Society of Appraisers, the Appraisers Association of America, or the International Society of Appraisers to find an appropriate appraiser.

Learn more about our current work and projects here:

2021 Teen Science Scholars

Science Division Videos and Podcasts

Science Division News


Featured Collection Items

Anthropology Collections
Many Hands Shirt



Incorporating ethnography and archaeology, the Department of Anthropology studies humans and their many cultures.


The Archives Department collects, catalogs, and preserves the Museum’s administrative, cultural, and scientific history through a collection of images, documents, and artifacts.

Earth Sciences

The Department of Earth Sciences makes and shares new scientific discoveries while making earth sciences relevant and inclusive for all audiences.

Health Sciences

The Department of Health Sciences explores and teaches the biological principles of human health and disease.

Space Sciences

The Department of Space Sciences explores the mysteries of the universe, focusing on the lives and environments of young stars.


The Department of Zoology studies the planet’s biodiversity.

Research Facilities

Digital Research Lab

The Digital Research Lab is a research facility that uses cutting-edge visualization methods to reveal the anatomical structure of museum specimens.

Genetics Lab

Capturing life in sequence.

Avenir Collections Center

The Avenir Collections Center is a state-of-the art collections facility that houses the Museum’s 4.3 million specimens and artifacts.

Museum Publications

The Denver Museum of Nature & Science has an active research program and authors a variety of publications. These include the Annals (formerly the Proceedings), reports (formerly technical reports), annual reports, and curator publications.  Learn more about our publications here.

Denver Museum of Nature & Science Annals

Denver Museum of Nature & Science Reports

Annual Reports

Pan Divisional Staff

Gabriela Chavarria, PhD

Chief Curator and Vice President of the Science Division

Melissa Bechhoefer, MS

Director of Integrative Collections

Meghan Truckey, MA


Carla Bradmon

Business Support Supervisor

Libby Couch

Business Support Specialist

Courtney J. Scheskie, MA

Business Support Specialist

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