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NASA Education Portfolio

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					NASA Education Portfolio

          Data Call Report


                 Prepared by:




      Theresa Schwerin, Principal Investigator


    Institute for Global Environmental Strategies
             1600 Wilson Blvd., Suite 901
                    Arlington, VA

                www.strategies.org



                   Original Report:
                   May 31, 2006
                   Updated: January 22, 2007
               NASA Education Portfolio - Data Call Report
                              Contents


I. Introduction                                                   1


   A. Background                                   1
   B. The Data Call                                2
   C. Response                                     2
   D. Notes and Limitations on the Data            3
   E. Recommendations                              5

II. Executive Summary of NASA’s Education Portfolio               6

   A. NASA Education Portfolio Summary Charts

      (Note: these are separate files – embedded in Portfolio spreadsheet)

          Table – NASA Education Portfolio – At-A-Glance

          2006
          Investment by Outcomes
          Outcome 1 Investment by Bucket
          Outcome 2 Investment by Bucket
          Outcome 3 Investment by Bucket
          Outcome 4 Investment by Bucket
          Distribution by Funding Level

          2005
          Investment by Outcomes
          Outcome 1 Investment by Bucket
          Outcome 2 Investment by Bucket
          Outcome 3 Investment by Bucket
          Outcome 4 Investment by Bucket
          Distribution by Funding Level


   B. Summary by Outcome/Bucket                                   7

      Outcome 1                                    8
      1.1 Faculty and Research Support             9
      1.2 Student Support                          12
      1.3 Student Involvement Higher Education     14
      1.4 Course Development                       17
      1.5 Targeted Institution Research and
             Academic Infrastructure               19
      Outcome 2                                20
      2.1 Educator Professional Development—
             Short Duration (< 2 days)         21
      2.2 Educator Professional Development—
             Long Duration (> 2 days)          22
      2.3 Curricular Support Materials         24
      2.4 Student Involvement K-12             25

      Outcome 3                                26
      3.1 Materials                            27
      3.2 Professional Development for
             Informal Education Providers      28
      3.3 Informal Education Provider
             Involvement Opportunities         30

      Outcome 4                                32
      4.1 Dissemination                        33
      4.2 Coordination                         34
      4.3 Research and Development             35
      4.4 Evaluation                           37


III. Appendices

   A. Distribution List for Data Call

   B. Data Call Package
      • Cover E-mail
      • Buckets Definitions
      • NASA ECC Definition of Informal Education vs Outreach
      • NASA Education Framework Diagram
      • Portfolio Template
      • Guidelines for Constructing the NASA Education Portfolio
      • Frequently Asked Questions

   C. Acronyms and Abbreviations

   D. Miscellaneous Information

   E. Portfolio Spreadsheet
I. Introduction
A. Background

In late 2005 NASA established an Education Coordinating Council (ECC), which is
developing an implementation plan for the Agency’s education program. As directed by
the Administrator, the NASA education implementation plan must include a clearly
defined and coordinated portfolio approach in which the Agency’s portfolio of education
programs is directly mapped to outcomes that have been established for NASA
education.

The first step in this process was to establish a baseline of the current NASA portfolio of
education programs mapped to NASA’s three education outcomes. These outcomes are:

  Outcome 1: Contribute to the development of the STEM workforce in disciplines
  needed to achieve NASA’s strategic goals, through a portfolio of investments.

  Outcome 2: Attract and retain students in STEM disciplines through a progression of
  educational opportunities for students, teachers and faculty.

  Outcome 3: Build strategic partnerships and linkages between STEM formal and
  informal education providers that promote STEM literacy and awareness of NASA’s
  mission.

A Portfolio Working Group was tasked with characterizing and describing the Agency’s
portfolio of education programs, which can be broken down into three audiences that map
to the outcomes: higher education (workforce), elementary and secondary (pipeline), and
informal education (partnerships).

Breaking this down further, the working group defined 15 “Buckets” or categories of
education programs under each of these outcomes (see Appendix B for a summary chart
of the Buckets, their definitions, and guidelines for their use). The group also identified
what information was to be included in the portfolio, which served as the basis of a data
call to the NASA education community to collect baseline data for the NASA Education
Portfolio.

IGES was brought on board under its existing education grant with NASA’s Science
Mission Directorate (SMD) to support the NASA Portfolio Working Group by managing
the Education Portfolio Data Call. IGES was charged with performing the following
activities:

   •   Serve as central point of contact for the data call.
   •   Follow-up with NASA education contacts to elicit participation, answer questions
       and provide guidance.
   •   Receive data that was submitted and review it for appropriateness and quality
       control, clarifying and revising data that was submitted.
   •   Provide a consolidated report to NASA.


                                             1
B. The Data Call

Working with education leads from each of the NASA Mission Directorates and the
NASA Office of Education, IGES compiled a master list of NASA education contacts
(see Appendix A). The Portfolio Data Call was distributed to this list on April 5, 2006.
The call was sent to 178 individuals representing 245 NASA education programs,
projects, or activities. These included activities sponsored or conducted by:

   •   NASA’s Office of Education
   •   NASA’s Mission Directorates: Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate
       (ARMD), Exploration Systems Mission Directorate (ESMD), Science Mission
       Directorate (SMD), and Space Operations Mission Directorate (SOMD). Many of
       the Mission Directorate education activities are conducted at universities and
       other organizations.
   •   NASA Center Unique Programs.

The Data Call was limited to education activities (formal and informal) and did not
include public outreach. A definition of the difference between informal education
versus outreach was adopted by the NASA ECC in early April. This document was
included in the data call to help guide what information should be submitted for the
Education Portfolio (see Appendix B for a copy of this document).

Responses were due to IGES by April 26, 2006. During the intervening weeks, IGES
fielded hundreds of phone calls and e-mails; answered individual questions, as well as
participated in telecons with groups such as the NASA SMD E/PO Support Network
Forums; developed a Frequently Asked Questions document that was broadcast to the
Data Call distribution list; received and reviewed responses and followed-up for
clarification and/or additional information as needed.

C. Response

By May 19, IGES had received responses from 175 of 178 people contacted, an excellent
response rate of 98%. Of these responses, the following were excused from completing
the Data Call for the following reasons:

   The project had ended/discontinued
   • Achieving Destinations
   • HETE
   • Math Science Teacher & Curriculum Enhancement Program (MASTAP)
   • Model Institutions of Excellence (MIE)
   • NASA Science and Technology Scholarship
   • Network Research Training Sites (NRTS)
   • Office of Education: Earth Science Small Programs
   • Office of Education: Space Science Small Programs




                                             2
   •     Stardust
   •     Undergraduate Scholars

   Education activities have not yet started/or aren’t yet funded
   • INSPIRE
   • Moon Mineralogy Mapper (M3)
   • PDS Education (Susan Hoban)

   Activities are currently limited to outreach
   • ACE
   • AECC Exhibit
   • Aeronautics Lectureships Technology & Products (AETT/ RLEP)
   • Alabama A&M Senior Day
   • Aqua
   • Conferences
   • Earth Science Story Development
   • EOS Project E/PO
   • ESDIS/DAACS
   • First Robotics/SMD Robotic Alliance Project
   • James Webb Space Telescope (JWST)
   • TRMM

The responses from the Data Call were compiled and analyzed by IGES and are
presented in this report.

D. Notes and Limitations on the Data

Budget

The purpose of budget information reported through this data call should be to get an idea
of the rough order of magnitude NASA is investing in each of the areas, and not
interpreted as precise budget costs. Because most projects’ activities fall across several
Buckets, and their costs were not initially proposed to align with Bucket categories, the
costs needed to be disaggregated for the data call. As many respondents described this
was, at best, an educated guess. In a very few cases the respondent would not break
down their costs, only providing a total budget for the year. In these few cases, IGES
divided the budget evenly among the elements reported, and noted this in the comments
field.

The instructions provided were to report direct and indirect costs for each element (i.e.,
full costs). In cases where the budget reported appeared to be very low (e.g., only a few
hundred to a few thousand dollars), IGES contacted the respondent to ask if the costs
provided were full costs, including direct and indirect costs. However, there was not a
way for IGES to independently confirm that the costs reported were accurate and relied
on the respondent to provide full costs.




                                             3
Budgets are reported by Fiscal Year for activities conducted by NASA HQ or Field
Centers. For other activities the reporting period aligns with the individual grant/contract
year for 2005 and 2006.

There are cases where cost is reported as $0 or very minimal cost. There were several
reasons for this:

   •   Funding was left blank by the respondent.
   •   Funding has not yet been released/disbursed or determined for FY ’06.
   •   Funding is provided by another organization or the element is accomplished
       through an MOU (not involving NASA funding).
   •   The activity started in FY ’06, so costs are not reported for FY ’05.
   •   Activity is held/funded alternate years.

Pipeline

Questions 12a (The names of other areas of NASA education investment from which this
element draws participants), and 12b (The names of other areas of NASA education
investment that draw participants from this element) were intended to elicit information
on how the education elements reported are contributing to a “pipeline” approach to
NASA Education. This question was very confusing to many people and required
follow-up contact by IGES to attempt to clarify the question and elicit additional
information. In many cases the initial response was generic (e.g., “Engage,” “Employ,”
“Educate”). After following up, many were able to provide some more specific
examples.

Two reasons are noted for why this question was difficult:

1) The original question was phrased awkwardly and needs to be improved (once we
explained the intent, a typical response was “Oh, that’s what you meant!”). Also the
template that was used to collect this information only gave the question title, with a note
to see the guidelines for more details. A simple explanation for these questions should
have been included on the template, so the reader is able to adequately answer the
question without referring to another document.

2) Many activities are not set up to contribute to a “pipeline” approach. They either
aren’t or haven’t been able to track participants (one response was “Some of our students
are going on to graduate school, but not necessarily into NASA programs, and we have
some trouble tracking people after they leave.”); they don’t understand the scope of
NASA programs to either draw participation from, or that participants in their programs
could pursue (e.g., one response: “I do not have a good grasp of ‘other areas of NASA
education investment’ so my responses are probably not too accurate in questions 12a/b.
The ‘Guidelines’ and ‘Framework chart’ didn't help me with the specifics I felt you
wanted. How can I get the big picture of NASA education investment?”); or the things
that they are doing were noted as informal in nature and weren’t included in their
response.


                                             4
There is a strong need by NASA E/PO providers for guidance and support for a pipeline
approach to NASA education. These could include:

   •   Basic training for E/PO leads in the NASA infrastructure, resources, and
       recommended pipeline approaches;
   •   Easily accessible and customizable information for anyone involved or interested
       in NASA education (i.e., E/PO leads, as well as consumers of NASA education
       programs); and
   •   Mechanisms to facilitate the ability of E/PO leads of programs across the Agency
       to share information and collaborate.

Recommendations

Following are recommendations regarding the Education Portfolio Data Call. These were
developed by IGES as a result of feedback received during the Portfolio Data Call.

The concepts “Bucket” and “Element” were difficult for many people to grasp. Several
recommended that NASA not permanently adopt the term “Bucket,” which was noted as
a slang term. A simple term, such as “education category” would be more readily
understood.

For future Portfolio efforts, provide better instruction regarding aggregating elements, so
that responses are more consistent. Some projects reported several elements under one
Bucket, others rolled everything up into one Bucket. IGES worked with respondents to
roll-up their information as much as possible to minimize multiple entries of smaller
activities (e.g., reporting every individual teacher workshop at educator conferences).
However the enormous volume of information submitted (a 6MB spreadsheet that is
almost 190 pages long, reporting almost 1,000 individual elements) as well as time limits,
precluded rolling all activities into consistent levels of buckets.

Include a separate field for Web site (to go for more information). Several people
provided URLs within their responses; it would have been beneficial to collect this
information from everyone and in one field.

Most of these programs are already reporting data in NEEIS. It is recommended that
NEEIS forms be modified to collect Portfolio Data (i.e., collect information by Outcome
and Bucket). This could help cut down on reporting requirements.

Finally, it is strongly recommended that NASA make the final portfolio (without budget
information) available to everyone who responded to the data call. Many people that
IGES talked with during the Data Call aren’t aware of the breadth of NASA education
programs and resources. This could be a small step in helping them to be aware of other
activities and ways they could contribute to a NASA pipeline approach to education.




                                            5
      II. Executive Summary of NASA’s Education Portfolio

A. NASA Education Portfolio Summary Charts

   (Note: these are separate files – embedded in Portfolio spreadsheet)

      Table – NASA Education Portfolio – At-A-Glance

      2006
      Investment by Outcomes
      Outcome 1 Investment by Bucket
      Outcome 2 Investment by Bucket
      Outcome 3 Investment by Bucket
      Outcome 4 Investment by Bucket
      Distribution by Funding Level

      2005
      Investment by Outcomes
      Outcome 1 Investment by Bucket
      Outcome 2 Investment by Bucket
      Outcome 3 Investment by Bucket
      Outcome 4 Investment by Bucket
      Distribution by Funding Level




                                        6
                            NASA Education Portfolio Data Call
                                     At-A-Glance


Number of People Call Was Distributed to:                                178
Number of Programs/Projects:                                             245
Total Number of Elements Reported:                                       968

                                                                        2006            2005

Total Funding Reported:                                         $251,270,693    $227,643,357

Funding by Outcomes
1.1 Faculty and Research Support                                  $37,696,263     $29,762,976
1.2 Student Support                                               $24,054,766     $27,159,144
1.3 Student Involvement Higher Education                          $14,886,965     $16,832,280
1.4 Course Development                                             $4,515,893      $6,234,570
1.5 Targeted Institution Research and Academic Infrastructure     $20,554,214     $25,185,678
1.6 Higher Education - CDA                                        $19,028,100      $5,400,000
               Outcome 1 SUBTOTAL                               $120,736,200    $110,574,648
2.1 Educator Professional Development Short Duration               $7,211,410      $7,088,194
2.2 Educator Professional Development Long Duration               $16,866,348     $19,477,295
2.3 Curricular Support Materials                                   $9,523,424     $11,667,110
2.4 Student Involvement K-12                                      $13,645,132     $23,192,930
2.5 Elementary and Secondary Education - CDA                       $6,729,450      $4,000,000
               Outcome 2 SUBTOTAL                                $53,975,764     $65,425,529
3 Other - MOUs                                                             $0              $0
3.1 Materials                                                      $8,070,084      $7,325,760
3.2 Professional Development for Informal Education Providers      $2,643,503      $3,175,426
3.3 Informal Education Provider Involvement Opportunities          $1,345,547      $1,242,274
3.4 Informal Education - CDA                                      $29,679,195      $8,250,000
3.5 Informal Education - Youth/Student Involvement                   $650,414        $583,555
               Outcome 3 SUBTOTAL                                $42,388,742     $20,577,015
4.1 Dissemination                                                  $8,848,048      $8,200,163
4.2 Coordination                                                   $5,819,769      $6,887,546
4.3 Research and Development                                      $14,711,193     $14,158,335
4.4 Evaluation                                                     $1,867,146      $1,320,122
4.5 Cross-Cutting Investments - CDA                                $2,923,830        $500,000
               Outcome 4 SUBTOTAL                                $34,169,987     $31,066,165

Grand Total                                                     $251,270,693    $227,643,357
                     2006 - No. of Elements by Funding Level



  $1M - $17M         48



$501K - $999K        51



$251k - $500K            58



$101k - $250K                       109



 $61K - $100K                 79



  $26K - $60K                               151



    $0 - $25K                                                                         472


                0   50        100         150     200   250   300   350   400   450    500
            2005 - No. of Elements by Funding Level


  $1M - $17M         47


$501K - $999K       26


$251k - $500K        38


$101k - $250K              92


 $61K - $100K             73


  $26K - $60K                   138


    $0 - $25K                                                 554


                0         100         200   300   400   500     600
                           2006 Funding by Outcome
                            Total Reported = $251M




               Outcome 4
                 14%




Outcome 3
  17%                                                Outcome 1
                                                       48%




            Outcome 2
              21%
                       2006 Funding for Outcome 1 = $121M




          1.6 Higher Education
                  CDA                                   1.1 Faculty and
                  16%                                  Research Support
                                                             31%

   1.5 Targeted
Institution Research
   and Academic
   Infrastructure
         17%
                                                      1.2 Student Support
                1.4 Course                                   20%
               Development
                    4%              1.3 Student
                                 Involvement Higher
                                      Education
                                        12%
                          2006 Funding for Outcome 2= $54M




                     2.5 Elementary and                      2.1 Educator
                    Secondary Education -                     Professional
                         CDA (14%)                         Development Short
                                                            Duration (15%)




                                                                                 2.2 Educator
                                                                                  Professional
2.4 Student Involvement                                                        Development Long
      K-12 (17%)                                                                Duration (33%)




                                  2.3 Curricular Support
                                     Materials (21%)
                  2006 Funding for Outcome 3 = $42M




                   3.5 Youth Involvement
                                           3.1 Materials
                            2%
                                               19%




                                                            3.2 Prof. Dev.
                                                                 6%




                                                           3.3 Educator Involvement
3.4 Informal Education                                           Opportunities
         CDA                                                         3%
         70%
                   2006 Funding for Outcome 4 = $34M




                          4.5 Cross-Cutting
                                CDA
                                 9%

                                                   4.1 Dissemination
4.4 Evaluation                                           26%
     5%




                                                       4.2   Coordination
         4.3 R&D                                              17%
           45%
                              2005 Fundng by Outcome
                               Total Reported = $228M




                  Outcome 4
                    14%




Outcome 3
   9%


                                                        Outcome 1
                                                          48%




      Outcome 2
        29%
    2005 Funding for Outcome 1 = $111M




                           1.6 Higher
                         Education - CDA   1.1 Faculty and
1.5 Targeted                   5%             Research
 Institution/                                  Support
Infrastructure                                  26%
     23%




 1.4 Course
Development
     6%
           1.3 Student                     1.2 Student
           Involvement                       Support
               16%                            25%
                          2005 Funding for Outcome 2 = $65M




                                  2.5 Elementary and
                                    Secondary CDA
                                          8%
                                                                     2.1 Professional
                                                                    Development Short
                                                                           5%




2.4 Student Involvement
         20%


                                                                                         2.2 Professional
                                                                                        Development Long
                                                                                              42%




                                           2.3 Curricular Support
                                                 Materials
                                                   18%
                                  2005 Funding for Outcome 3 = $21M




                                  3.5 Youth/Student Involvement
                                               3%


                                                                                            3.1 Informal Education Materials
                                                                                                         36%




3.4 Informal Education - CDA
            40%




                                                                      3.2 Professional Development
                                                                                  15%
                               3.3 Informal Ed Provider Involvement
                                               6%
          2005 Funding for Outcome 4 = $31M



               4.4 Evaluation
                    4%
                                            4.1
                                       Dissemination
                                           27%




4.3 R&D
  47%                                      4.2
                                       Coordination
                                          23%
B. Summary by Outcome/Bucket

This section provides a summary of NASA’s Education Portfolio by Outcome and
Bucket. The beginning of each major section identifies the Outcome, defines the
audience, and lists the Buckets that fall under the outcome.

An executive summary is provided for every Bucket category and includes the following
information:

a) bucket definition and guideline;
b) revisions that IGES recommends to the bucket definition and guideline, including a
   description of any common misconceptions or difficulties applying the original bucket
   definition and guideline;
c) summary of NASA’s education portfolio for this bucket – including typical approaches
   and traits;
d) description of unique aspects or notable approaches for education. purpose is
   program/projects/activities that are categorized under this Bucket; (IMPORTANT
   NOTE: this is not intended as an endorsement of a specific program, nor to imply that
   these are the “best” NASA activities. There was a huge amount of data collected by
   the data call, and this is solely intended to give some examples.); and
e) pipeline approaches. (NOTE: This section doesn’t identify every response given,
   rather highlights of some of the most frequent, or unique, responses.)

While the term E/PO (Education/Public Outreach) is used occasionally in this section, it
is important to note that the portfolio data call only requested information on formal and
informal education, as defined by the NASA Education Coordinating Council, and not
public outreach.




                                             7
Outcome 1 – Higher Education

Contribute to the development of the STEM workforce in disciplines needed to achieve
NASA’s strategic goals, through a portfolio of investments.

Definition of audience: Higher Education focused on post-secondary education of
students and faculty, including participants from and programs with colleges,
universities, and junior or community colleges.

Outcome 1 includes the following Buckets:

1.1   Faculty and Research Support
1.2   Student Support
1.3   Student Involvement Higher Education
1.4   Course Development
1.5   Targeted Institution Research and Academic Infrastructure




                                            8
Bucket 1.1 - Faculty and Research Support

a) Definition and Guideline

Definition: Provide faculty and post-doctorates with training opportunities via
partnerships and collaborations with NASA scientists and engineers in authentic research
and education activities that support the NASA mission.

Guideline: Includes professional development linked to research opportunities for faculty
and post docs. Can include efforts that target individuals or groups of individuals.

b) Recommended Revisions to Bucket Definition/Guideline

Several respondents interpreted the definition to only include faculty and postdoctorates
at science and engineering departments. The guideline needs to be expanded to explicitly
include faculty from colleges of education – not just science and engineering faculty.
Several NASA education elements reported are related to faculty from colleges of
education.

Also, NASA faculty/postdoctoral training opportunities are reported that are not linked to
conducting specific research. These include professional development workshops,
seminars/symposia, and other events designed to improve college-level instruction.

In addition to professional development through specific training/events (e.g.,
workshops), there were also activities reported under this Bucket that include
resources/mechanisms to keep faculty aware of ongoing opportunities and community
development. For example, CAE Newsletter and Online Discussion Group provide
updated workshop information, as well as “on-going learning and community
development.” Also CAE Website Resources, which “regularly changing articles on
teaching strategies” archive of teaching tips, and online workshop registration forms. If
the definition of 1.4 Curriculum Development is expanded to include resources, these
items could possibly be moved to that category.

The following edits are suggested to the definition/guideline to address these issues:

Definition Edits: Provide faculty and post-doctorates with training opportunities,
partnerships, and collaborations with NASA scientists and engineers in authentic research
and/or educational activities that support the NASA mission.

Guideline Edits: Includes professional development and/or research opportunities for
faculty and post docs from STEM-related departments, as well as colleges of
education. Can include efforts that target individuals or groups of individuals.




                                             9
c) Summary

NASA Faculty Support and Research ranges from short term (e.g., sessions at
professional meetings or 1-day meetings to plan collaborative efforts) to multi-year
efforts (e.g., 3-year fellowships or sponsored research projects at universities). They
include very focused activities (e.g., training to prepare faculty to use a specific type of
NASA science data) to more general support and collaborations (e.g., providing
continuing advice and resources, funding to attend professional meetings, or host guest
speakers). The target audience ranges from faculty with little or no previous NASA
experience, to more seasoned participants in NASA-related STEM. Several place an
emphasis on supporting faculty at minority-serving institutions (MSIs). The following
paragraphs summarize common approaches reported to faculty research and support.

•   Faculty/Postdoctoral Research at College/Universities - includes several MUCERPI
    grants (Minority University and College Education and Research Partnership
    Initiative in Space Science) that support faculty conducting NASA space science
    research at their home institution. Fellowships are also competitively selected for
    individual researchers to conduct research using NASA science results (e.g., Chandra
    Fellows, Giaconni Fellowships and the Hubble Fellowship).

•   Faculty Research at NASA Centers - includes opportunities to work alongside NASA
    scientists and engineers, such as the 10-week NASA Research Academy at Ames
    Research Center; or the Faculty Awards for Research (FAR), designed for faculty at
    MSIs who have little or no previous NASA research funding.

•   Professional Development Events – includes sessions and workshops on NASA
    content or research specifically designed for college-level faculty. Many of these
    activities are presented at professional meetings (e.g., the American Geophysical
    Union, the NASA Pre-service Teacher Institutes). There are also stand-alone events
    (e.g., Chicago 2004: A Workshop to Foster Broader Participation in NASA Space
    Science Missions and Research Programs, was convened by DePaul University; a
    follow-up regional conference is planned by DePaul in 2006).

•   Collaborations/Partnerships - support is provided for specific, targeted activities
    (e.g., South Carolina State University was mentored in NASA proposal development
    by the Southeast Regional Clearinghouse- SERCH), as well as ongoing mentoring
    and support for faculty via NASA’s Science Mission Directorate (SMD) E/PO
    Support Network.

•   E/PO Professional Development – activities are designed to prepare college faculty,
    as well as NASA scientists, to participate in NASA E/PO activities (e.g., workshops
    for faculty attending NASA Pre-Service Teacher Institutes, training for NASA
    scientists to participate in mission E/PO activities).




                                              10
d) Unique Aspects/Notable Approaches

Most of the elements reported are related to four-year colleges and universities. One
unique approach is “Regional Teaching Excellence Workshops and Teacher Exchanges,”
conducted by the Center for Astronomy Education, which reports “a strong emphasis on
the professional development of community college faculty.” Their motivation for
targeting community college instruction includes: an historical lack of NASA resources
and infrastructure to support community college faculty; reported 50% of astronomy
instruction takes place at 2-year colleges; and community colleges serve diverse
populations (minorities reported to account for 33% of community college enrollment).

e) Pipeline

Pulls participants from: competitive selection from universities and colleges; MSIs and
NASA programs for MSIs (MU-SPIN and MUCERPI were frequently identified); NASA
mission scientists and engineers.

Pushes participants to: NASA workforce (science missions, universities, and research
facilities); NASA research funding (preparing faculty to submit competitive proposals for
NASA Research Announcements); NASA faculty support from other NASA-sponsored
programs; publication/presentation of research results in journals and at conferences.




                                           11
Bucket 1.2 - Student Support
a) Definition and Guideline

Definition: Projects that help prepare individual undergraduate and graduate students to
enter the STEM workforce by offering NASA-related research and education
experiences, scholarships, and fellowships (i.e., funding is linked to a specific person, not
a project).

Guideline: Includes projects for which funding is assigned to a specific individual, often
linked to actual research.

b) Recommended Revisions to Bucket Definition/Guideline

Several elements were originally reported as 1.2 Student Support, which IGES re-
categorized as 1.3 Student Involvement Higher Education. We interpreted Student
Support to include elements for which funding is awarded through a scholarship or
NASA education grant to an individual student (e.g., Graduate Student Researchers
Program) or individual research assistants supported on NASA grants (e.g., several
MUCERPI grants provide direct support to individual students working on research
projects). Following are examples of the kinds of activities that were re-categorized as
1.3 Student Involvement Higher Education:

   •   internships or summer programs at NASA Centers or at universities;
   •   student seminars/lecture series; and
   •   cooperative training/education programs (e.g., semester-long work experiences at
       NASA Centers).

IGES recommends reiterating in the guideline that this category applies to individuals.
For example:

Guideline: Includes projects for which funding is assigned to a specific individual often
linked to actual research. For example, through a scholarship or education grant
directed to a specific individual and not to a project. This could also include
individual students supported on NASA research projects at universities (i.e.,
employed as research assistants).

c) Summary

NASA’s portfolio of higher education student support includes scholarships and
fellowships for undergraduate and graduate students in STEM fields from all 50 states.
These include competitive scholarships, as well as support for students from
underrepresented/underserved groups.

The majority of funding (approximately 68%) reported for student support is spent on
competitive scholarships and fellowships. Over the past two years NASA’s Space Grant



                                             12
fellowship/scholarship programs reported a total of over $13 million in scholarships to
students in all 50 states ($7 million in 2006, $6.5 million in 2005). They reported support
for 2200 undergraduate and 730 graduate students, with 21% of the awards reported as
going to underrepresented minorities.

NASA’s Graduate Student Researchers Program (GSRP) awards fellowships for research
and study covering all NASA areas of research and development. Annually GSRP
supports approximately 300 graduate students from across the U.S. The Earth System
Science Fellowship program aims to prepare a highly qualified pool of science expertise
in support of NASA’s mission to understand and protect out home planet. This program
reports almost 100% of students supported complete their masters or PhD degrees and are
employed in academia, industry, or government research.

Among the programs that target support for underrepresented/underserved students are:

•   The Harriet G. Jenkins Pre-doctoral Fellowship Program (JPFP) provides support to
    minorities including women and persons with disabilities.
•   NASA-funded University Research Centers are required to spend 25% of their total
    award on direct student support.
•   Women in Science and Engineering (WISE), which provides scholarships and
    Agency-wide internships to minority female scholars majoring in STEM fields at
    Spelman College (historically black college for women in Atlanta, GA).
•   Some NASA MUCERPI projects report providing direct support for undergraduate
    and graduate research assistants.

d) Unique Aspects/Notable Approaches

JPL Undergraduate Scholars (JPLUS) provides scholarships and fellowships to students
not attending research universities over a 5-county region of S. California. The program
was noted as “locally funded at no cost to NASA.”

Students who participate in the WISE program at Spelman College are recruited as
freshman and study a curriculum related to NASA research areas, conduct research
during the academic year, present their results at NASA centers during the summer, and
complete up to three NASA internships over their four-year undergraduate career.

e) Pipeline

Pulls participants from: local colleges/students, competitive selection nationally from
universities and colleges; other NASA programs for higher education (Space Grant,
Undergraduate Student Research Program) and NASA programs for MSIs (MU-SPIN,
MUREP, MU-SPIN).

Pushes participants to: Other NASA Programs (e.g., USRP, MUST, GSRP, Space Grant,
New Investigator Program, etc.). NASA workforce was also mentioned (Earth System
Science Fellowships noted “Early hire at some NASA Centers”).


                                            13
Bucket 1.3 - Student Involvement Higher Education
a) Definition and Guideline

Definition: Projects that inspire groups of students to pursue and excel in STEM
disciplines by capitalizing on unique opportunities, NASA facilities and personnel.

Guideline: Includes projects in which groups of students are selected to participate. This
typically means that the project is funded instead of individuals being funded directly.
This type of activity will typically occur at a Center and often involves a collaboration
between external institutions and Centers (e.g. internships, competitions, flight
opportunities exclusive of research, etc.). Opportunities for training or reaching pre-
service educators should be listed here, not in Outcome 2.

b) Recommended Revisions to Bucket Definition/Guideline

Guideline states that this type of activity will “typically occur at a NASA Center.” There
are several activities reported that involve student involvement that occurs at a university,
or other NASA sponsored location (but not a NASA Center), as well as at conferences.
For example, the Global Telescope Network (GTN) at Sonoma State University, which
involves a network of users remotely operating telescopes, the GLOBE program, which
engages students in collected environmental observations; the Pre-service Teachers
Institutes, e.g., LaRC PSTI is held in Alexandria, VA at a hotel; student seminars and
lecture series at colleges and universities.

Recommended to edit the definition for this Bucket to include NASA-sponsored research
facilities at universities and other locations. For example: “This type of activity will
occur at a Center, or other NASA-sponsored facility, resource or event, and often
involves…”

c) Summary

NASA student involvement programs for higher education include activities targeted for
undergraduate and graduate students, including students majoring in STEM disciplines,
as well as pre-service educators. Following is a summary of activities reported for higher
education student involvement.

   •   Experiences using NASA or NASA-sponsored facilities and resources. These
       include Marshall Space Flight Center’s Great Moonbuggy Race; Spaceward
       Bound; the Student Flight Program at JSC; the Student Dust Counter Instrument
       (Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab/University of CO); or the Global Telescope
       Network (Sonoma State University). See the next section on Unique
       Aspects/Approaches for more information about these programs.

   •   Internships or summer programs at NASA Centers or other NASA-sponsored
       facilities (e.g., universities and colleges) – these typically include 10-week



                                             14
       residential programs where students work alongside a science mentor at a NASA
       Center or university;

   •   Conferences, seminars, and lecture series – such as the NASA Pre-Service
       Teacher Institutes, which engage education majors from MSIs; and the NASA
       Astrobiology

   •   Cooperative training/education programs, including semester-long work
       experiences at NASA Centers (e.g., the Education Training Cooperative Program
       at JSC).

d) Unique Aspects/Notable Approaches

The Student Flight Program at JSC provides a unique academic experience for
undergraduate students to propose, design, fabricate, fly and evaluate a reduced gravity
experiment of their choice.

The goal of the Global Telescope Network (GTN) is to partner college and high school
students and amateur astronomers with members of the science teams from the
supporting missions in order to produce publishable multi-wavelength data on targets of
scientific interest. Because the GTN involves remotely-operated telescopes, they can be
used by urban, rural, and other underrepresented communities. GTN is supported by three
NASA space science missions: GLAST, Swift, and XMM-Newton.

Spaceward Bound is a new project sponsored by NASA Ames Research Center. It will
immerse pre-service and in-service teachers in authentic NASA exploration research by
challenging them to plan and implement a field research expedition. The pilot program
will run in June-July 2006; educators have been selected for a summer training
opportunity in the Atacama Desert in Chile. The program will support teachers to “go
forth and multiply” by facilitating peer training programs and dissemination of NASA
science throughout the NASA Explorer School system and beyond.

There are also NASA student involvement activities that not only provide higher
education students the opportunity to experience NASA science and research, but also
involve them in engaging younger students.

As part of E/PO activities for NASA’s SDO/HMI mission, the Science in Service
Program at the Haas Center for Public Service trains Stanford University undergraduate
and graduate students as solar science mentors. The training includes a focus on best
methods for teaching, and the National Science Standards. The trained science mentors
have conducted an after-school science club, called SuperStar, for approximately 100
children annually, at the three local clubhouses of the Boys & Girls Club.

The Student Dust Counter, designed by students at the University of Colorado at Boulder,
is part of the New Horizons E/PO program. The device will detect dust grains produced
by collisions between asteroids, comets and Kuiper Belt objects during New Horizons'


                                            15
journey. It will be the first science instrument on a NASA planetary mission to be
designed, built and "flown" by students. With faculty supervision, the students will also
distribute and archive data from the instrument, and lead a comprehensive education and
outreach effort to bring their results and experiences to classrooms of all grades over the
next two decades.

e) Pipeline

Pulls participants from: local colleges/students, competitive selection nationally from
universities and colleges; other NASA programs for students (Space Grant,
Undergraduate Student Research Program, SHARP, High School Aerospace Scholars)
and NASA programs for MSIs (MU-SPIN, MUREP, MU-SPIN); NASA Explorer
Schools.

Pushes participants to: Other NASA Programs (e.g., USRP, MUST, GSRP, Space Grant,
New Investigator Program, etc.). NASA workforce, with a few programs noted the
number of students from their programs who have gone on to be employed in NASA
STEM careers.

One JSC project (ETC) noted that once students are on Center they “hold hiring meetings
where we talk to students about what steps they should take to pursue other NASA
programs. We also, use the hiring meeting to put students in touch with NASA Student
Program Managers and others who influence selection decisions.”




                                            16
Bucket 1.4 - Course Development
a) Definition and Guideline

Definition: Development and presentation of specialized courses or curricula at
community colleges, colleges, and universities.

Guideline: Includes development of stand-alone coursework and curricular
improvement/support at institutions of higher learning.

b) Recommended Revisions to Bucket Definition/Guideline

Several college-level instructional resources and tools were reported that are not full
stand-alone courses or curricula. It is recommended to revise this bucket so that it is
more parallel to comparable categories under Outcomes 2 (2.3 – Curricular Support
Materials) and 3 (3.1 – Materials).

Definition: Development and presentation of specialized courses, curricula, or
instructional resources/tools at community colleges, colleges, and universities.

Guideline: Includes development of stand-alone coursework, instructional
resources/tools and curricular improvement/support specifically designed for
institutions of higher learning.

c) Summary

NASA’s portfolio of course development includes new curricula and courses, including
face-to-face as well as online experiences. Several learning modules and other
instructional resources and tools were also reported that are designed for college-level
STEM instruction. Following are just a few examples illustrating the range of activities:

•   NASA Space Grant Colleges reported 8 new majors, 29 new minors, 80 new courses,
    and 13 new Centers. The new courses split evenly between upper and lower division.

•   NOVA program (NASA Opportunities for Visionary Academics) institutions have
    developed integrated Earth system science courses that use the NASA GLOBE
    program (a hands-on student observation program) as the course foundation for
    science education majors. Additional courses based on GLOBE are reported in
    science and environmental science departments, and cooperative courses between
    science and education departments. A Pre-service toolkit was developed by GLOBE
    to assist 77 university partnerships in implementing GLOBE curricula with pre-
    service science/environmental science education disciplines.

•   Courses have been developed by several MUCERPI grantees, including a space
    science minor at Hampton University; an astrobiology course at University of
    Houston Downtown; an introduction to astronomy at Southern University at Baton


                                            17
    Rouge and a minor in astronomy at Norfolk State University (7 courses).

•   Salish Kootenai College has modified eight space science-related courses to include
    NASA space science themes.

•   Three online courses for a masters degree in science education have been developed
    at the University of Arizona.

•   NASA Glenn Research Center is developing A Beginner’s Guide to Hypersonics. The
    web site is targeted for undergraduate and advanced high school students and will
    include several interactive computer programs that demonstrate the high speed, high
    temperature physics of this speed regime.

d) Unique Aspects/Notable Approaches

NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies has developed the New York City Research
Initiative (NYCRI), which involves teams of undergraduate and high school faculty and
students. NYRCI has developed learning modules (“Mathematical Modeling – What
Determines a Planet’s Climate”) and tools include EDGCM (Education Global Climate
Model – a desktop climate modeling program).

The ESSE-21 Program – Earth System Science Education for the 21st Century, is a
NASA program run by the Universities Space Research Association (USRA) that offers
small grants to colleges and universities, especially minority institutions, to spark
collaboration among educators and scientists in developing undergraduate and graduate
courses, curriculum materials and degree programs in Earth system science. In 2006,
USRA will publish and broadly disseminate the best of these resources to college faculty.

e) Pipeline

Pulls participants from: NASA-funded colleges and universities; NASA Educators
Resource Center Network; NASA Portal; other NASA programs (NOVA, ESSE-21,
Space Grant, EPSCoR), NASA mission E/PO programs. Courses/lectures augmented by
NASA scientists.

Pushes participants to: Other NASA programs and resources (e.g., NOVA, ESSE-21,
Space Grant, EPSCoR, NASA Portal, NASA mission E/PO programs, etc.)




                                           18
Bucket 1.5 - Targeted Institution Research and Academic
Infrastructure
a) Definition and Guideline

Definition: Mechanisms by which the presidential and legislative mandates requiring
Federal Agencies to enhance STEM infrastructure, research, and education capacities at
post-secondary institutions are implemented.

Guideline: Includes mandated awards and collaborations not elsewhere captured in the
Outcome 1 categories. Typically applies to Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs) and
other underserved institutions.

b) Recommended Revisions to Bucket Definition/Guideline

None

c) Summary

Only four elements were categorized under this bucket:

   •   EPSCoR (Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research);
   •   ERC (University Research Center) program (note: a portion of URC was also
       reported under 1.2 Student Support);
   •   AIHEC (American Indian Higher Education Consortium);
   •   A portion of a MUCERPI grant for improvement to research facilities Southern
       University at Bator Rouge

d) Unique Aspects/Notable Approaches

Elements reported under this bucket all focus on improving capabilities/infrastructure of
minority-serving institutions.

e) Pipeline

Pulls participants from: Other NASA education programs (e.g., SEMAA, NASA
Explorer Schools, Space Grant, NASA minority university programs).

Pushes participants to: Other NASA education programs (e.g., NAFP, CIPA, JPFP,
SEMAA, Space Grant, FAR); NASA mission directorate research announcements and
awards.




                                            19
Outcome 2 – Elementary and Secondary

Attract and retain students in STEM disciplines through a progression of educational
opportunities for students, teachers and faculty.

Definition of audience: K-12 focused, although some junior and community college
educators may participate in Educator Professional Development experiences.

Outcome 2 includes the following Buckets:

2.1   Educator Professional Development--Short Duration (< 2 days)
2.2   Educator Professional Development--Long Duration (> 2 days)
2.3   Curricular Support Materials
2.4   Student Involvement K-12




                                            20
Bucket 2.1 Educator Professional Development--Short Duration

a) Definition and Guideline

Definition: Short-duration professional development experiences at Centers, ERCs, etc.
primarily for K-12 educators.

Guideline: Includes only one-time, short duration professional development for
educators, typically short workshops and activities lasting less than 2 days. Do NOT
include opportunities and training for pre-service educators (see 1.3 above).

b) Recommended Revisions to Bucket Definition/Guideline

None

c) Summary

NASA short-term professional development for K-12 educators includes training related
to specific missions and science content, training to use specific NASA curriculum
support materials, and preparation or information on participating in NASA education
activities (e.g., training in specific GLOBE protocols, or the Engineering Design
Challenge). Typically these events piggyback on or are presented as part of larger
workshops, conferences, or meeting. These include state (e.g., California Science
Teachers Association) and national teachers associations (e.g., NSTA, American
Association of Physics Teachers), or professional societies (e.g., American Astronomical
Society). NASA Explorer School summer workshops held at Centers were also
mentioned frequently.

d) Unique Aspects/Notable Approaches

Includes activities that provide professional development and training for NASA
Educators who will go out and train other teachers, e.g., Solar System Ambassadors
Program.

e) Pipeline

Pulls participants from: Other NASA education programs (NES was most frequently
mentioned, also other NASA mission E/PO projects, Solar System Educator Program),
newsletters and list serves of teachers who have attended previous events or are part of
the project’s “network.”

Pushes participants to: Other NASA education programs (e.g., NEAT, ERCs, NES,
FIRST, USRP, GSRP, Beyond Einstein and FMA Live! were all mentioned);
partnerships with other NASA mission E/PO (feed teachers to these other programs).




                                            21
Bucket 2.2 Educator Professional Development--Long Duration

a) Definition and Guideline

Definition: Longer-term or sustained professional development experiences offered via
distance learning, through series, partners, etc. for primarily for K-12 educators.

Guideline: Includes professional development experiences lasting longer than 2 days or
offered over an extended period of time. Do NOT include opportunities and training for
pre-service educators (see 1.3 above).

b) Recommended Revisions to Bucket Definition/Guideline

None

c) Summary

Includes educator professional development typically delivered as “stand-alone” events,
or as part of courses and other more in-depth professional development experiences.

d) Unique Aspects/Notable Approaches

“Ambassador” or “Train the Trainer” Approaches: Includes activities that provide
professional development for NASA educators (and not classroom teachers), who in turn
go out and provide training for teachers across the U.S., for example, the Astrophysics
Educator Ambassadors (EA). There are 19 EAs who help develop, test, and disseminate
NASA astrophysics E/PO materials. Sonoma State University (SSU) conducts
workshops for EAs on NASA astrophysics content and standards-based curriculum
materials who in turn conduct workshops across the country. For example, SSU estimated
that GLAST Educator Ambassadors and SSU E/PO professionals disseminated
educational materials and GLAST content through over 127 different workshops, lectures
and/or conferences. A total of 8,203 teachers, students and members of the general public
were direct participants, while they estimate that over 44,700 others were indirect
participants.

The annual NASA Earth and Space Science Education Products Workshop, which
includes NASA educators from the NASA ERCs, AESP specialists, SMD E/PO support
network (Broker/Facilitators) - This week-long event provides an opportunity for product
developers from many NASA science missions to prepare NASA educators to use these
materials in their teacher and student programs.

e) Pipeline

Pulls participants from: Other NASA education programs (NES was most frequently
mentioned, also other NASA mission E/PO projects, Solar System Educator Program),


                                           22
newsletters and email lists keep teachers connected who have attended previous events or
are part of the project’s “network.”

Pushes participants to: Other NASA education programs (mission E/PO, as well as
NASA-wide resources as the NASA Portal, Digital Learning Network, Space Grant
programs). In some cases exceptional participants are recruited to serve on advisory
boards (e.g., Aquarius E/PO Advisory Group), to review education materials, or
participate as a member of a NASA E/PO team.




                                           23
Bucket 2.3 Curricular Support Materials

a) Definition and Guideline

Definition: Development and distribution of educator resources for use in formal
education settings; Educator Guides, Briefs, wallsheets, textbooks, web-based lesson
plans and activities for K-12.

Guideline: Includes printed and electronic materials intended for use in formal education
and linked to national standards. This includes tools for educators (briefs, guides, etc.),
wall sheets, textbook collaborations, web-based lessons, web challenges, etc. List only
products and materials that 1) are still in development or active use (providing
workshops, active distribution as opposed to archived or passive distribution); 2) are less
than 2 years old, even if still in passive distribution. For web-based products, list only
those still in routine or active use and in maintenance.

b) Recommended Revisions to Bucket Definition/Guideline - None

c) Summary

NASA’s Portfolio of curriculum support materials covers a wide-sweeping range of
resources for K-12 education including materials in a variety of formats (printed
materials – e.g., posters, educator guides, lithographs; and electronic: Web-based, CD,
etc).

These materials are designed for a wide range of student abilities (i.e., from beginning to
very advanced learners and learning styles. While many NASA education projects are
moving to electronic access and delivery, these materials range from resources that are
very accessible and simple to use (e.g., posters and lithographs) to very sophisticated
(e.g., EDGCM – a desktop software package that allows students to perform global
climate modeling).

d) Unique Aspects/Notable Approaches

Many of NASA’s curriculum support materials are paired with teacher professional
development activities. Several items noted an emphasis on mathematics (e.g., Smart
Skies, FlyBy Math Line Up with Math, Robin Whirlybird). Many also noted plans for
making materials accessible to disabled users.

e) Pipeline

Pulls participants from: NES, NASA Portal, project Web sites, NASA ERCs, AESP.
Several mentioned delivering materials in conjunction with teacher workshops

Pushes participants to: Related NASA resources, e.g., links on a Website, references, etc.




                                            24
Bucket 2.4 Student Involvement K-12

a) Definition and Guideline

Definition: Opportunities for K-12 students to actively participate in instructional NASA
opportunities and capitalize on unique NASA facilities and personnel.

Guideline: Includes active instruction and engagement of K-12 students with specific
learning objectives, typically associated with classroom teams and/or teachers. This
includes summer "intern" activities (e.g. SHARP), challenges, flight payload
opportunities, competitions, camp-ins, etc.

b) Recommended Revisions to Bucket Definition/Guideline

Some of the activities that were reported under this bucket might be better categorized
under Outcome 3 if an additional Bucket category is added for Student/Youth
Involvement (e.g., summer camps that are not connected to classroom instruction, or
after-school clubs).

c) Summary

NASA’s education portfolio for Student Involvement includes activities that engage
students in authentic learning opportunities (e.g., collecting data to be used by NASA
scientists), conducting research using NASA facilities (e.g., GAVRT , the Global
Telescope Network, etc.), and interacting with NASA scientists, engineers, and E/PO
professionals (e.g., through school visits, presentations or special events). These include
activities conducted at NASA Centers, as well as universities and other NASA-supported
facilities. There are also activities that provide work experience for high school students.

d) Unique Aspects/Notable Approaches

In 2005, the Suzaku E/PO program advertised a nation-wide call for observing proposals
from high-school teams to use data from mission. A winning team was selected, and with
agreement from the Suzaku Science Working Group, students were provided with data in
January 2006. Five of the students will present the results of their analysis at the AAS
meeting in Calgary. Astronomy for students with Visual Impairments is a one-week
science and match camp for students with visual disabilities.

e) Pipeline

Pulls participants from: NES, SEMAA, SHARP, AESP, Space Grant, PreCollege
Programs (e.g., Governors' Schools, local and state school districts), students who have
participated in previous activities.

Pushes participants to: Same as above, plus other examples are NASA Academy, High
School Intern Program (HIP).


                                             25
Outcome 3 – Informal Education
Build strategic partnerships and linkages between STEM formal and informal education providers
that promote STEM literacy and awareness of NASA’s mission.

Definition of audience: Informal education through partnerships with institutions and/or
organizations.

Outcome 3 includes the following Buckets:

3.1 Materials
3.2 Professional Development for Informal Education Providers
3.3 Informal Education Provider Involvement Opportunities


NOTE: The majority of NASA education elements could be categorized under these
buckets. However, there is nothing within the Outcome 3 buckets to describe youth
involvement programs done through informal education institutes, including youth
groups and after school programs/clubs. These would be the equivalent of bucket 2.4
Student Involvement K-12, though they may not be held at NASA centers (e.g.,
presentations that NASA scientists and E/PO professionals deliver to content, activities,
and programs directly to the public audience).

For the purposes of the Portfolio spreadsheet, these activities have been categorized as:

3.5 Informal Education – Student/Youth Involvement.

Suggested Definition (from Leslie Lowes, JPL): Opportunities for youth in grades K-12
to actively participate in instructional opportunities related to NASA content.

Suggested Guideline (from Leslie Lowes, JPL):: Includes active instruction for
engagement of youth in grades K-12 with specific learning objectives, typically
conducted in partnership with science learning centers (such as museums, planetariums,
science centers), youth serving organizations (Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, Boys and Girls
Clubs, etc.), and afterschool programs (often associated with schools). This includes
dedicated summer camps, and special opportunities (e.g. Girl Scout "destinations").

If this Bucket is added there are some entries under 2.4 Student Involvement (K-12) that
could possibly be moved to this bucket.




                                             26
Bucket 3.1 Materials

a) Definition and Guideline

Definition: Materials, products, exhibits, etc. for informal education.

Guideline: Includes exhibitry, and printed and electronic materials intended for use in
informal education settings that may or may not be directly linked to national standards.
This includes both exhibits and/or NASA "content" AND associated training activities.
List only those materials and activities which are 1) still being funded (development or
implementation); 2) active within the last 2 years.

b) Recommended Revisions to Bucket Definition/Guideline

None

c) Summary

These include a range of resources that are ready to use “off-the-shelf” in informal
science education venues (e.g., exhibits), as well as resources that can be used by
informal educators to build products that meet their individual needs (e.g., Web resources
such as the Earth Observatory, which provides NASA Earth imagery and animations at
multiple resolutions, which can be incorporated into museum programs).

d) Unique Aspects/Notable Approaches

“Earth to Sky" broadened National Park Service Interpreters’ interest in and exposure to
NASA Space and Earth Science, and met their need to understand how to access NASA
resources and expertise. The first year of the project provided professional development
for the Rangers, who are now developing interpretive products and programs.

e) Pipeline

Pulls participants from: NASA Explorer Institutes, small and large museums across the
U.S., National Park Service

Pushes participants to: Responses included many of the same ones given for formal
education (e.g., NASA Portal, ERCs, CORE, individual missions and education projects.)




                                             27
Bucket 3.2 Professional Development for Informal Education Providers

a) Definition and Guideline

Definition: Specialized training for providers of informal education.

Guideline: Includes in-depth training and/or partnerships with informal education
providers, typically so that the informal education provider can present NASA content to
other audiences. This may include providers of after-school programs, educator
professional development, clubs and community organizations.

b) Recommended Revisions to Bucket Definition/Guideline

None

c) Summary

Professional development for informal education providers covers such diverse groups as
Girls Scout USA Troop Leaders, education specialists at museums and science centers,
planetaria, National Parks Rangers, public libraries, and amateur astronomers. These
activities also include continuing training and professional development for groups such
as the NASA Solar System Ambassadors, who are conducting events using NASA
content across the U.S.

d) Unique Aspects/Notable Approaches

The Solar System Ambassador portfolio noted “At JPL, we have been working on a
"Collaborative Model" to encourage our volunteer (and other NASA) programs to work
together more effectively. Example: A Space Place or Museum Alliance facility
planning a NASA-focused event would contact a local SSEP to conduct teacher
workshops at targeted schools in advance of the event, so teachers could better prepare
students for upcoming field trips. SSAs could be called upon to give talks during the
major portion of the facility event and/or give talks to community groups in preparation
for the event. NSN and SOC volunteers could host local star parties. NASA Brokers,
Forums, ERCs, Space Grants, etc. could also support these community events. For
smaller communities/facilities, the SSE Forum's "Solar System Nights" kits could be used
as the basis of the event. By utilizing these existing volunteer (and other) networks, we
can increase visibility for NASA and STEM pipeline careers in communities that
normally would not have a connection with NASA at a relatively low cost.

e) Pipeline

Pulls participants from: Girl Scouts USA, NASA NEI, Public Libraries, Museums, NPS,
and Science Centers, Night Sky Network, as well as other “standard” NASA programs
(e.g., NASA Portal, ERCs, etc.)


                                            28
Pushes participants to: “The Museum Alliance is a gateway into NASA for the museum
community, providing a continuous conversation with and among museum partners and
NASA personnel. Provides access to information and resources related to NASA
missions and education programs (Distance Learning Network). Forward info to the
Museum Alliance listserve and serve as a resource/gateway/hub for queries. Most
museums do educational programming - pass along Formal Ed info (K-12 as well as
higher ed) as well as Informal Ed, media info, funding opportunities and job openings.




                                          29
Bucket 3.3 Informal Education Provider Involvement Opportunities

a) Definition and Guideline

Definition: Opportunities for informal education providers to actively participate in
NASA opportunities and capitalize on unique NASA facilities and personnel.

Guideline: Includes specific NASA opportunities to providers of informal education for
the purposes of training and/or inspiring the audiences they reach. This will include
flight opportunities, and Center-based activities using unique resources (centrifuges, drop
towers, etc.).

b) Recommended Revisions to Bucket Definition/Guideline

None

c) Summary

Elements reported for Informal Educator Involvement include activities that engage
informal educators in authentic learning opportunities (e.g., Reduced Gravity Flight
Program, Global Telescope Network, etc.). They also include events and activities to
interact with NASA scientists, engineers, and E/PO professionals (e.g., NASA Town Hall
Meeting at the National AfterSchool Association).

The Solar System Ambassadors program provides an opportunity for space enthusiasts to
become involved in NASA E/PO. SSAs volunteer to train online and then share
information about NASA science and research through events they hold in their local
community.

d) Unique Aspects/Notable Approaches

The Reduced Gravity Flight Program at JSC includes a museum and science center
element, which provides museums and science centers the opportunity to engage local
high school students and community members in an authentic scientific endeavor.
Museums or science centers propose an experiment to fly on the reduced gravity aircraft.
Proposals are evaluated by technical reviewers and up to ten teams per year are
competitively selected to fly their experiments. The culminating activity of this program
is an opportunity for museum staff, community members, and/or formal educators to fly
aboard NASA’s reduced gravity aircraft.

e) Pipeline

Pulls participants from: NASA Explorer Institutes were frequently mentioned. The
Reduced Gravity Flight Program noted that “Participating teams in the Museum and
Science Center element of the Reduced Gravity Flight Program are encouraged to choose
a local, underrepresented group of high school students (i.e., classroom of students, scout


                                            30
troop, church group, community group, after-school program) with whom to develop the
idea for the experiment. These students would be involved throughout the process, but
would not fly on the plane. It is hoped these students would be encouraged to participate
in NASA’s undergraduate flight program in the future.”

Pushes participants to: The Reduced Gravity Flight Program also noted that “We fly
museum staff and community so that the museum will increase its offerings in
technology and increase their relationship with their surrounding community. In the brief
time the program has been in effect, the museums and science centers have involved
more students in science (and especially in NASA science) and increased the number of
partnerships with their community. “




                                           31
Outcome 4: Cross-Cutting Investments

Other Agency Investments not linked DIRECTLY to Outcomes 1-3 but needing to be
identified and assessed.

Outcome 4 includes the following Buckets:

4.1   Dissemination
4.2   Coordination
4.3   Research and Development
4.4   Evaluation


Note: “Communication” is a cross-cutting activity that isn’t captured in the definitions of
the above buckets, and it is recommended that NASA consider adding this to the
definition for either the “Coordination” or “Dissemination” Buckets. This includes
developing content and mechanisms to disseminate NASA content to formal and
informal education audiences about NASA. For example, this would include newsletters
and articles developed for the NASA Education Portal, or Mission Website, which
disseminate information to broad education audiences.




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Bucket 4.1 Dissemination

a) Definition and Guideline

Definition: Mechanisms by which information about NASA Education investments or
materials and products are distributed.

Guideline: Includes the supporting infrastructure required to distribute materials and
information, but NOT the content provided through these mechanisms. Should include
systems like the NASA Education Portal, CORE, ERC distribution activities, education
conference support, partnerships with national organizations, some aspects of the SMD
EPO Support Network, etc.

b) Recommended Revisions to Bucket Definition/Guideline

See note at beginning of this section regarding “Communication” activities. Also, several
Mission Websites reported elements under this bucket. Mission Websites provide a
means for disseminating information to broad education audiences.

c) Summary

Includes NASA-wide dissemination mechanisms such as CORE, the Educator Resource
Centers, and the NASA Education Portal. Elements reported here also include many
activities reported by the SMD E/PO Support Network Forums and Broker Facilitators
and other individual NASA education projects efforts to disseminate materials at state,
regional, and national educator and science conferences, as well as through Mission and
Project Websites, and direct distribution in response to individual requests.

d) Unique Aspects/Notable Approaches

e) Pipeline

Pulls participants from: Many of the previously mentioned, e.g., NASA ERCs, NES,
AESP, NASA Education Portal, NASA E/PO Support Network, national/state/local
conferences and events, etc.)

Pushes participants to: Many of the previously mentioned, e.g., NASA ERCs, NES,
AESP, NASA Education Portal, NASA E/PO Support Network, specific NASA E/PO
projects/events, etc.)




                                           33
Bucket: 4.2 Coordination

a) Definition and Guideline

Definition: Mechanisms by which different NASA education projects and activities are
coordinated to realize synergies, take advantage of commonality, and avoid duplication.

Guideline: Includes coordination between the education activities of different missions
and/or research programs, either within a funding office or across funding offices. For
example, this is a central function of the SMD Education Forums.

b) Recommended Revisions to Bucket Definition/Guideline

See note at beginning of this section regarding “Communication” activities.

Also, coordination should not be limited to coordination within NASA. There are several
activities that involve significant coordination with external groups that should also be
captured under this Bucket.

c) Summary

Includes coordination within the NASA E/PO community as well as coordination with
external groups to leverage NASA education activities, and creating and maintaining
“networks” of education audiences.

d) Unique Aspects/Notable Approaches

Many of the coordination activities allow NASA E/PO projects to establish strong and
lasting partnerships and relationships between scientists and educators, as well as with
external E/PO projects and groups.

e) Pipeline

Pulls participants from: All of the previously mentioned (e.g., NASA E/PO missions and
scientists, SMD E/PO Support Network, NES, NEI, Space Grant, ERCs, AESP, as well
as groups relevant to specific E/PO projects (e.g., National Federal for the Blind, after
school clubs, specific schools and universities, etc.).

Pushes participants to: All of the previously mentioned (e.g., NES, NEI, NASA E/PO,
ERCs, SMD E/PO Network, Space Grant, etc.) as well as specific
projects/programs/activities relevant to individuals or groups (e.g., NASA research grant
programs). Some projects note that they are the first introduction to NASA education for
many of their participants and serve as guides through the many and varied NASA
programs/resources.



                                            34
Bucket 4.3 Research and Development

a) Definition and Guideline

Definition: Investments in both R&D of education technologies and research, assessment,
and implementation of educational best practices by which NASA education investments
can be improved.

Guideline: Includes projects funded to support development of new education
technologies and studies or research to enable education "best-practices".

b) Recommended Revisions to Bucket Definition/Guideline

None

c) Summary

Includes individual efforts to document and develop best practices and innovative
approaches to education, or examine special issues in education

This element also includes programs that solicit and select individual projects that are
innovative approaches and best practices, and test new technology. For example, the
REASoN program, IDEAS, and NASA Earth Science Education programs, all release
regular solicitations for such projects. While these elements select projects that
individually fall under several of the other Bucket areas, the individual projects change
every 1-3 years, and the overall program focus is also subject to change.

For example, REASoN program (Research, Education and Applications Solution
Network) focuses on national priorities in e-government solutions and education. The
last REASoN solicitation was released in 2003. The six funded solutions had the common
theme of addressing the needs of the educational community with respect to timely and
ready access to NASA Earth and environmental data to promote math, science and
geography in K-12 education, and Earth system science in graduate and post-graduate
education. These projects included Elementary & Secondary Education (Project 3-D
VIEW; and MY NASA DATA), Higher Education (Satellite Observations in Science
Education; and GeoBrain: Mobilization of NASA EOS Data and Information through
Web Services and Knowledge Management Technologies); and Informal Education
(Immersive Earth; and Measuring Vegetation Health: Remote Sensing Modules).

The IDEAS grant program provides start-up funding to explore innovative, creative ways
to integrate astronomy and space science into US K-12 education and public outreach
venues through partnerships between astronomers/space scientists and education
professionals. They identified several projects that received IDEAS funding and have
since leveraged them into larger, sustained efforts within their education/public outreach
target audience.



                                            35
d) Unique Aspects/Notable Approaches

Special issues related to NASA education are being examined by several different
working groups organized under the SMD E/PO Support Network, for example, one
group is examining benefits and challenges of embedding E/PO programs into scientific
research programs and missions; another is an Exceptional Needs Working Group, which
is organizing a Tactile and Technology Focus Group.

e) Pipeline

Pulls participants from: Several specific NASA programs were mentioned: NES, SMD
E/PO Support Network, Space Grant, NSTA, NASA Explorer Institutes, AESP, Central
Operations of Resources for Educators (CORE), Center for Distance Learning (CDL),
NASA Portal; Specific projects (e.g., Jason, Beyond Einstein; community-based
programs); NASA SMD Missions (scientists, E/PO professionals); Professional societies
(National Society of Black Physicists and National Society of Hispanic Physicists) and
meetings, workshops, and seminars attended by NASA-funded scientists; Lists of those
who have won NASA individual research awards; National and international universities;
and NASA USRP, GSRP, and Space Grant programs. Identified through educational and
research conferences;

Many of the projects draw from and include teachers and students from the following
NASA programs: GLOBE, MS PHD's, MUREP, CIPA, PAIR, NASA Explorer Schools;
NASA Explorer Institutes.

The IDEAS grants draws participants from all other NASA programs that target scientists
and educators who use NASA content as a key element of their projects.

Pushes participants to: All of the previously mentioned.




                                           36
Bucket 4.4 Evaluation

a) Definition and Guideline

Definition: Mechanisms by which the Agency can assess the quality, relevance,
performance, and impact of educational investments.

Guideline: Includes products, contracts, and partnerships that contribute to reporting
requirements, assess the intrinsic education merit of products, performance, and impact.

b) Recommended Revisions to Bucket Definition/Guideline

None

c) Summary

Elements reported mainly included program-level evaluation, e.g., evaluation of a
specific program (e.g., SMD E/PO Support Network) or E/PO efforts of individual
missions. An independent peer review of NASA SMD E/PO education products is
conducted by IGES.

d) Unique Aspects/Notable Approaches

Integrated Stakeholder Coalition for Workforce Development (ISCWD) Systems Map –
MSFC is sponsoring a project by Pontifax Consulting to determine STEM opportunities,
needs, and resources and establish a method for evaluating the alignment of the three.
They are developing a systems map with “input from all stakeholder groups” that will
show opportunities, needs and resources in the community that relate to workforce
development.”

e) Pipeline

Pulls participants from: Professional Education Evaluators; Program participants (e.g.,
teachers attending a workshop completing an evaluation form); Focus Groups; members
of the NASA SMD E/PO Support Network; specific NASA programs (e.g., NASA
Explorer Institutes, NASA Student’s Launch Initiative, Linking Leaders, NES
Sustainability Summit); Scientists, education standards experts, curriculum designers,
instructional designers (to review education products), and NSTA’s Building a Presence
for Science.

Pushes participants to: Other NASA education professionals and program participants,
E/PO project managers (e.g., provide evaluation results).




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