Changing Exhibits

Check out the museum's rotating exhibits highlighting the university's extensive research collections, student research projects and more!

Featured Exhibits

Journey through four billion years of life on Earth, celebrate Michigan's rich geological formations, step into a giant cell and more!

Interactive Spaces

Watch researchers study the genomes of different species or Peer into the fascinating, meticulous process of preparing fossils from around the world

Virtual Exhibits

Explore the evolution of whales and get to know U-M scientists and their research from the comfort of your couch!



Changing Exhibits


Dinosaur Discoveries

Opens February 17, 2024 

Dinosaur Discoveries: Ancient Fossils, New Ideas from the American Museum of Natural History will open at the U-M Museum of Natural History on February 17, 2024.

Unseen Worlds

Through the artistry of Jim Cogswell, microorganisms can be seen in a delightful and colorful expression on the windows of the museum.

Research Stations

Learn about current research projects by U-M faculty at freestanding kiosks throughout the museum.

Student Showcase

Our Student Showcase features research projects by U-M undergraduate and graduate students working in a variety of disciplines.

Collections Case

Check out our rotating exhibits highlighting the university's extensive research collections in fields including paleontology, botany, zoology, and more. Learn the science behind these collections and how technology enables today's researchers to learn more than ever from the collections.

Featured Exhibits


Evolution: Life Through Time

Journey through four billion years of life on Earth to learn how the first organisms changed our world and how evolution connects all living things. Study specimens and dig through the fossil record, while exploring the five major extinctions and how life persisted through them all.


Exploring Michigan

Celebrate our state's rich geological formations, awe-inspiring prehistoric life forms, and diverse ecosystems in Exploring Michigan.  Life-size dioramas highlight Michigan’s varied habitats and wildlife, and hands-on activities engage kids—and curious people—of all ages.



Under the Microscope

Step into a giant cell for a closer look at the importance of life's smallest building blocks! Explore the different parts of cells and their functions by examining model organelles, DNA molecules, and more. Interactive activities can help you discover even more about what is inside your body.

People and the Planet

Returning in 2025

The story of our planet is also the story of our species. Learn how Earth's resources shaped human development, and reflect on the ways we, as people, can—and do—impact our planet for better and worse.

Measuring Time and Space

Investigate the ways scientists measure the natural world with hands-on activities that are fun for all ages. Zoom through the universe, from atoms and particles to distant galaxies and star clusters and back. Then measure your height in turtles, cats, and penguins!

Dynamic Planet

Our Earth Science gallery is a lot more than rocks! Learn how our planet formed; how its atmosphere, water, and lifeforms changed it over time; and what's going on below its surface. Then see and touch the wide range of specimens in our collection of rocks, minerals, and crystals.

Prehistoric Whales

Impressive in their own right, the skeletons of these ocean giants are also evidence of one of evolution's biggest surprises: their ancestors lived on land!


Imagine a time on Earth when enormous flying reptiles swooped, dipped, and dove overhead. Then step into our West Atrium to feel what that was like, as the life-size reconstruction of a Quetzalcoatlus pterosaur stares you down on the bridge over our atrium.

Marquee Gallery - Bonaparte

This playful, multimedia work by local artist Mark Tucker celebrates the scientific process, as well as the relationship between some of Earth's largest and smallest life forms. (It's also a really cool papier-mâché dinosaur skeleton!)

Tree of Life

Explore the connections between all living things with our new, interactive, multimedia Tree of Life exhibit. (Hint: it's in their DNA!)

On the Trail of the Mastodons

The only place in the world you can see a male and female mastodon skeleton side by side and a mastodon trackway! Step into a real mastodon footprint and touch a cast replica of an eight-foot mastodon tusk.

Interactive Spaces


Science at Work: Fossil Prep Lab

Peer into the fascinating, meticulous process of preparing fossils from around the world for study and display.

Science at Work: Biodiversity Lab

Watch researchers study the genomes of different species and populations to make new discoveries about life and how it works!

Planetarium Dome & Theater

See the night sky — and more — like never before, with enhanced brilliance, clarity, and detail! Our state-of-the-art Planetarium & Dome Theater brings new perspectives to even the most familiar celestial bodies, constellations, and phenomena, from the Big Dipper to the northern lights. Tickets required.

Science Forum

The new Science Forum will bring visitors face-to-face with scientists, providing an informal space for scientist presentations, films, discussions, and more!

Virtual Exhibits


Whale Evolution

Explore the museum’s rich collection of prehistoric whale specimens in a 3D immersive environment accessible anywhere, any time!

Virtual Research Stations

Get to know U-M scientists and their research in digital versions of compact temporary exhibits.