Significant changes started in Mineral Sciences world-wide in the 1980s; they sometimes seemed to threaten future Teaching of Mineral Sciences at all levels. In response, academic circles tried to identify the particular long-term values of Mineral Sciences in contrast to other fields of science and, by combining the different traditions and experiences of the universities involved, to find the best way for embedding these values in the 21st century higher education.

The interest in Teaching Mineral Sciences was stirred world-wide by a debate on Mineralogical Society of America (MSA)’s Talk-list on Optical Mineralogy (February-March 2006) that has evolved into a generalized discussion on Teaching Mineral Sciences in general. In Europe, Mineral Sciences-related EuroBachelor and EuroMaster Curriculum Development programmes, co-financed by the European Commission (EuroBachelor, EuroMaster), were running in the 1998–2008 period (http://www.geo.auth.gr/euromin/index.htm).

The session will address all types of aspects related to teaching mineral sciences at all levels – from secondary, to high schools, and universities. Until 2002, teaching was a subject that was traditionally included in the IMA General Meetings programmes. We invite you now, at the 20th IMA conference, to continue that good tradition and share your personal experience and expertise with the larger community!