Welcome to the 2003 NASA Astrobiology Academy Outreach page!
The NASA Ames Astrobiology Academy is a unique summer institute of higher learning whose goal is to help guide future leaders of the U.S. Space Program. It provides research opportunities in state-of-the-art Astrobiology laboratories coupled with broad-based views into the inner workings of the space program.
Forty percent of the student's time is spent as a "group" or a "team" working on projects, listening to and debating lectures, and traveling together. These avenues help to develop the leadership, teamwork, and critical thinking skills that are important to our nation's future in space. In addition to the rich intellectual environment, students are assigned to a Principal Investigator to work independently on a technical project. The mentor relationship that evolves gives the students insight into the trials and rewards of primary scientific research.
The final part of the Academy experience results from the exposure to NASA's greater organization. A formal lecture series focusing on all the various aspects of Astrobiology is coordinated with informal dinners with some of NASA's top scientists. There is also considerable time spent on travel to various facilities allowing students to learn about and network with leaders in aerospace, high-tech, genetic engineering companies as well as local, state, and national political decision makers. In summary, the Academy provides all the tools to guide the future leaders of America's space program.
As part of their group project, the Academy has compiled several lesson plans focusing on the topic of astrobiology. Below you will find several lesson plans for use primarily in grades 5-9. The files are available in .pdf format.
Please direct questions and comments to Steve Mitchell, Outreach Coordinator for the 2003 NASA Astrobiology Academy, at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information on the Academy, visit their website by clicking on the above image.
|Astrobiological research design|
|Introduction to the search for extraterrestrial life|
|Extreme life on Earth & its analogues to Mars|