Astrobiology Learning Progressions
Background and introduction to the Astrobiology Learning Progressions
The purpose of the Astrobiology Learning Progressions is to provide cognitive, instructional, and communication support for formal and informal educators, scientists, outreach specialists, and product developers who create and conduct learning experiences and otherwise communicate about astrobiology. The content of the Astrobiology Learning Progressions aligns closely with the topics covered in the Astrobiology Primer v2.0 and the NASA Astrobiology Strategy.
Astrobiology’s investigations and core concepts are inherently interdisciplinary, and are underpinned by fundamental science concepts in many different scientific disciplines. The Astrobiology Learning Progressions provide direct connections between discipline-based, fundamental concepts in science and the interdisciplinary core concepts of astrobiology.
State standards guide K-12 educators to teach those fundamental concepts, yet even the newest standards, the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), are just beginning to reflect the interdisciplinary nature of many fields of science. The Astrobiology Learning Progressions support teachers to use the interdisciplinary nature of astrobiology to teach those fundamental concepts required by the standards.
And for scientists, as they prepare to make classroom visits, give public talks, or otherwise communicate about astrobiology, the Astrobiology Learning Progressions help them to link their own work in astrobiology with the formal learning their audiences have likely have had in Earth, life, and physical sciences.