Visual Thinking Strategies offers a variety of resources to support the development of our practitioner community. From training and custom professional development programs to curriculum and certification, we are always developing the next generation of resources for the VTS community.

For a complete listing of upcoming events, click here.


Visual Thinking Strategies offers training in facilitation, coaching and aesthetic development. Whether you're new to facilitation or a seasoned practitioner, VTS offers professional development to support growth in all aspects of VTS methodology.

  • Beginner Practicum

    Beginner Practicum

    The two-day Beginner Practicum focuses on developing VTS facilitation skills through presentation of the basic theoretical tenets of VTS and opportunities to practice with group coaching. As it is the first workshop in our training series, those new to VTS or with minimal experience are welcome.

  • Advanced Practicum

    Advanced Practicum

    The three-day Advanced Practicum is for those who have facilitated a minimum of ten VTS sessions following a Beginner Practicum led by a VTS trainer. While some time is allotted to more deeply examining the theoretical underpinnings of VTS, the focus of the Advanced Practicum is helping participants.

  • Aesthetic Thinking Workshop

    Aesthetic Thinking Workshop

    The Aesthetic Thinking Workshop provides an overview of the research that led to cognitive psychologist and VTS co-founder Abigail Housen's stage model of aesthetic development and to the creation of VTS. Workshop participants examine aesthetic thinking and how the understanding of its development can inform education practice.

  • Coaching Workshop

    Coaching Workshop

    The three-day Coaching Workshop is for experienced VTS practitioners who have completed the Beginner and Advanced Practicums and want to support others in learning VTS. The Coaching Workshop focuses on strengthening facilitation skills necessary in feedback processes in group coaching and one-on-one coaching sessions.

  • VTS in Science

    VTS in Science

    The three-day VTS in Science Workshop is for educators working in science contexts such as museums, parks, classrooms who want to design learner-centered experiences for their students/visitors. This hands-on workshop will first focus on developing VTS facilitation skills with art and then shift to applications for science contexts. Those new to VTS or with minimal experience are welcome. 

  • Image Selection

    Image Selection

    Have you ever struggled to choose an art image for VTS discussions? Are you interested in learning how to select images for other subjects?
    In this three-day workshop, participants will study the history, theory, and practice of selecting images for VTS. We will consider how thoughtful, responsible, and broadly diverse image selection supports aesthetic development and critical thinking skills. The focus will be on the selection of art images with an introduction to the process of choosing non-art images for VTS discussions as well.This workshop is appropriate for experienced VTS facilitators (prerequisite: VTS Beginner Practicum).

Other Services

VTS offers a variety of services that can be tailored to meet the objectives of your institution. If you would like to bring VTS trainers to your site, have specific questions about developing a customized training for your institution, or have some objectives in mind and wonder how VTS might help you achieve those objectives, please contact us.

  • School Programs

    School Programs

    The VTS School Program is a three-year professional development model and curriculum implementation for PreK-8 schools. Our model includes a mix of full-staff trainings, grade-level or content-area group debriefings, and classroom co-teaching sessions each year. Both our professional development and curriculum models are sequential and developmentally based to reflect student and teacher growth in critical thinking, language and art-viewing skills over time.

    Our core school program regions are New York City, San Francisco, Sonoma/Napa, Portland, OR, and Seattle. Our non-regional school programs utilize VTS trainers and coaches living outside of our core regions, and are supported by the national VTS organization. To inquire about implementing VTS at your school, please contact us.

  • Consulting


    VTS offers consulting services tailored to the objectives of museums, universities, schools, not for profit organizations and corporate institutions. Consulting services include staff workshops, image selection, team building experiences, curriculum and program development, and coaching support.

    Clients include:

    • Canadian Museum of Civilization, Gatineau, Quebec
    • Cisco Systems, San Jose, California
    • Kentucky Historical Society, Frankfort, Kentucky
    • Kyoto University, Japan
    • Museo Picasso Málaga, Spain
    • Nathan Cummings Foundation, New York City
    • National Portrait Gallery of Australia, Canberra, Australia
    • Nelson-Atkins Museum, Kansas City, Missouri
    • Reade Rehabilitation Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
    • Smithsonian Institution:  National Museum of the American Indian
    • University of Auckland Medical School, New Zealand
    • U.S. National Park Service:  Weir Farm National Historic Site
  • Speaking Engagements

    Speaking Engagements

    Our staff of experienced Trainers have been teaching and learning with VTS for many years all over the United States and internationally. To arrange a speaking engagement, keynote, or introductory presentation with a VTS Trainer, please contact us.

  • Shadow a Trainer

    Shadow a Trainer

    VTS offers facilitation, coaching, and programmatic support to individual practitioners of VTS working towards program implementation. In a one-on-one setting comprised of classroom visits, observation, and shadowing a VTS Trainer, this professional development offering can be tailored to your interests and scheduled at your convenience with a regional Trainer. To coordinate your individual professional development plan, please contact us.