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Earth Observation and Education

Image comparisons are powerful teaching tools, particularly to show change over time. By comparing transformation that has been documented in remote images, changes that have occurred in our lifetimes can be observed. It is hoped that such documentation of global change will make this issue more immediate and real. There is an additional benefit in the lessons that they teach us.

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According to Charles F. Kennel, Associate Administrator for Mission to Planet Earth, "The ultimate product of Mission to Planet Earth is education it its broadest form. Our vision is a sustainable Earth system science education program rooted in strong principles and objectives. NASA's Mission to Planet Earth (MTPE) Enterprise provides long-term studies of the Earth system needed to answer critical questions about how the global environment will affect us now and in the future. The unique vantage point of space provides the global perspective needed to better understand how all of the parts of the Earth's environment- air, water, land, and life-interact and make life possible."

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NASA has defined specific objectives for its Earth Science Enterprise Education Program. The first are to:
  • Train the next generation of scientists to use an interdisciplinary Earth system science approach
  • Continue to educate and train educators as research evolves and capabilities change
An important goal of the CAN DO GeoCam II mission is to provide a vehicle for stimulating hands-on experiences for students so that they can better interpret the global environmental changes that will determine the quality of the world that they will inherit. Specific program goals include:
  • Provide an educational vehicle to support serious student research in environmental change
  • Provide training to teachers and students in the use of multispectral imaging and digital image processing
  • Provide high quality matched images to evaluate geomorphologic change over time
  • Provide students the opportunity to interact with ISS and leading scientists while conducting real-life research of their own design and under their control.
  • Provide a vehicle to support advanced technology skill training of teachers

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The View from Space

Educational Plan

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