Michigan 4-H Embryology Course



Embryology is the study of the development of the embryo and in this program, the focus is on the development of chicken eggs. The online, on-demand course is designed to provide support for teachers, homeschool groups, community partners, 4-H leaders and other caring adults interested in teaching youth about the science of hatching eggs. Also provided are resources for hatching your own eggs, if desired. Before starting egg incubation, there are many things to consider, like where the chickens will live after hatching. Please check out our considerations and tips for other useful information on the process.  

This online learning tool can be used to support a virtual exploration of embryology with chickens or face-to-face with an incubator and eggs. No prior knowledge is needed! Youth can view the videos and see how a chicken develops even if they don't have eggs in-person. The course contains a curriculum complete with background information, worksheets, videos and a space to ask questions. 

Michigan 4-H Embryology  is focused on the science of hatching chicken eggs. Youth explore the developmental process and stages of chicken growth and basic chicken reproduction and cell division. Through this program, youth will also gain a deeper respect for life and the value of living things as their understanding of the care required for a living thing grows. By the end of their participation in Michigan 4-H Embryology, students will be able to: 

  • Identify the parts of an egg and their functions
  • Explain what is required to hatch an egg, how it hatches naturally and artificially
  • Describe different methods to observe a developing embryo and different stages of development
  • List what a chick needs to live and how to care for them
  • Explain how record keeping is important in science

Course Format

Self-paced online course




To register for this course you will need to create an account, sign in with your email/password, and complete the registration process. To watch a video tutorial, demonstrating an overview of the registration process, click on the following link: Online Course Registration Video Tutorial. Step-by-step instructions are below.

  1. STEP #1: Create your Michigan State University Guest Account by selecting the Create Your MSU Guest Account button below. (For detailed instructions visit the following web page: Instructions: Creating Your Guest Account.)

    Create Your MSU Guest Account
  2. STEP #2: Click on the button below to login to the registration system with your Guest Account (your email) and Password. Follow the instructions to register for the course. Upon registration, you will receive a receipt and instructions for accessing the course.

    Register for the MI 4-H Embryology Course
  3. STEP #3: After registration is complete, login at https://d2l.msu.edu/ with your Guest Account and password to begin the course.

    Start the Course

*If you need to reset your password at any time go to https://auth.msu.edu/ and select the option for "Need help Signing in."

More Information

For content related questions, please contact Kaelie Fessler at fessler5@msu.edu.

Technical Assistance

If you have any technical problems, please contact the Michigan State University IT Service Desk from 7am-12am Monday through Friday and 10am-12am on Saturday/Sunday, any day that the University is open.

  • Phone: (517) 432-6200
  • Phone (toll free): 1 (844) 678-6200
  • Email Web Form