Geospace Physics Laboratory
Sciences and Exploration Directorate - NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center

GPL Education and Public Outreach

GPL Education and Public Outreach

E/PO for the Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) Mission:

The scientific and technical complexity of this mission present a variety of educational challenges, while at the same time opening the door to a variety of unique learning opportunities. All MMS E/PO projects and activities use NASA content, people, external partners, NASA facilities to involve educators, students, and/or the public in NASA STEM. Careful attention has been given to ensure that each activity responds to the needs identified by the education community and other groups. Many activities were selected due to their ability to enhance the value and/or reach of other chosen activities, with the ‘whole being greater than the sum of its parts’.

Projects Include:
  • Audio and Video Podcasting Program - NASA EDGE
  • Cyber Café
  • Digital Fabrication – ‘Transmedia Book’ and ‘iBook’ PD Companion
  • Scale Models: LEGO, Paper, Full-scale ‘Student Built’ Models
  • MMS and Space Weather Workshop Templates
  • MMS E/PO Website
  • Social Media Network
  • Spacial Geometry Mathematics Guide
  • International Outreach Progams i.e. Sun-Earth Days

MMS Bookmark

Program audiences range from the general public to middle school students to pre-service and museum educators, including the underserved and other unique groups. For each of the MMS E/PO projects, products, and activities, the audience is the focus of its design. Careful attention has been given to ensuring that each activity responds to specific audience needs as identified by the greater education community.

Many of the projects contribute to the involvement, broad understanding, and/or training of underserved and/or underutilized groups and make a demonstrable contribution to attracting diverse populations to careers in STEM. Attention has been paid to providing an appropriate pipeline of opportunities which both draws in new audiences and provides opportunities for continued learning beyond the MMS E/PO plan.

Along with individual projects, MMS works closely with the GSFC Office of Communications and NASA’s existing social media networks to reach the target audiences. The E/PO website will also provide easy access to educational content, including a sustained audio/video podcasting program, allowing educators to incorporate MMS content into their own curriculum and programs.


Of particular interest to our E/PO team is NASA’s new focus on addressing middle school pre- and in-service STEM educator training and support to build STEM competencies and enable teachers to inspire students at a critical time in their education. For the greatest impact, MMS contributes to teacher professional development opportunities in partnership with national programs with a proven record of accomplishment and sustainability. We use proven and emerging collaborative technologies to scale and increase educator development and certification programs. Partners in this effort include the Challenger Learning Centers, NASA’s Space Weather Action Centers, the International Society of Technology in Education, and the National Science Teachers Association, each with programs that incorporate elements identified as critical for middle school success, such as strong school leadership, use of data to drive instruction, and interventions in reading, writing, and mathematics.