Alabama Math Science Technology Initiative (AMSTI)


“The results affirm Alabama’s investment in AMSTI as a premier professional development delivery system for STEM education. Alabama’s future is bright as these young minds are challenged to think critically and solved complex problems with no obvious answer –the 21st century skills business and industry are asking of our graduates” 

-- Dr. Tommy Bice, Alabama State Superintendent of Public Instruction . 

Program Type

Curriculum/Instructional Materials
College Readiness

Target Audience

Teachers/Educational Leaders




Pre-K - 5
Grades 6 - 8
Grades 9 - 12

 Accomplished link

Program Impact

The Alabama Math, Science, and Technology Initiative (AMSTI) has trained some 20,000 teachers and administrators who serve more than 400,000 students in half of Alabama's K-12 schools. AMSTI students have made stunning gains amounting to 28 days of extra learning in math and 40 extra days in reading. With enough funding, AMSTI could reach 20,000 or more new teachers, and hundreds of thousands of students, in three years.


Program Overview

The Alabama Math, Science, and Technology Initiative is the Alabama Department of Education's initiative to improve math and science statewide. Its mission is to provide all students in Grades K-12 with the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in the workforce and/or postsecondary studies.

The program was designed by a Blue Ribbon Committee comprised of lead K-12 teachers and administrators, higher education representatives, and business leaders. AMSTI provides three basic services to schools: professional development, equipment and materials, and on-site support. Each AMSTI teacher receives 120 contact hours of subject and grade specific professional development during the Summer Institutes. Teachers conduct all of the hands-on activities they will eventually perform with their students at the institutes. Then, upon returning to their school, they receive all of the equipment and materials needed to engage their students in hands-on, activity-based instruction. As AMSTI is funded from a state line item in the education budget, there is no direct cost to the teacher, school, or school district for participation in AMSTI.

How To Get Involved

AMSTI has faced large cuts in state funding, leaving hundreds of Alabama schools on a waiting list to join the program. Other funders can help fill this gap. The cost to support a single school can range from $25,000 to $100,000, depending on the school's size and needs.


Steve Ricks, Program Director

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Design Principles

The programs in this database clear a high bar. STEMworks reviewed each program against the Design Principles for Effective STEM Philanthropy.

  • Accomplished
  • Developing
  • Undeveloped

Overarching Principles

  • Need

    Identify and target a compelling and well-defined need.

  • Evaluation

    Use rigorous evaluation to continuously measure and inform progress towards the compelling need identified.

  • Sustainability

    Ensure work is sustainable.

  • Replication and Scalability

    Demonstrate replicability and scalability.

  • Partnerships

    Create high impact partnerships

  • Capacity

    Ensure organizational capacity to achieve goals.

STEM Principles

  • Challenging and Relevant Content

    Offer challenging and relevant STEM content for the target audience

  • STEM Practices

    Incorporate and encourage STEM practices.

  • Inspiration

    Inspire interest and engagement in STEM.

  • Under-Represented Groups

    Identify and address the needs of under-represented groups.