Denise Smith Denise Smith

Assessment and Review

Posted on May 24, 2013 - 7:42 PM CDT

Education Products

All NASA Science Mission Directorate funded education products are peer-reviewed by an independent panel of educators and scientists. The NASA Earth and Space Science Education Product Review is carried out by the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES):

Mission and Non-Mission E/PO Programs

NASA convenes external review panels to assess SMD E/PO programs according to rigorous evaluation criteria:
- Quality, Scope, Realism, Appropriateness
- Connections to Other NASA E/PO Activities
- Partnerships/Sustainability
- Evaluation
- Customer Needs Focus
- Content
- Resource Utilization
- Pipeline
- Diversity

Mission E/PO plans undergo rigorous review at mission key decision points.

Non-mission E/PO projects are competitively selected via a panel review process grounded in the SMD evaluation criteria.

All NASA Science Mission Directorate education and public outreach programs are expected to include evaluation plans. Proposals to extend previously funded SMD E/PO efforts are required to provide evaluation results of the prior effort.

SMD E/PO Program Evaluation Criteria

All Science Mission Directorate education and public outreach programs are peer-reviewed against the following evaluation criteria.

Intrinsic Merit

1. Quality, Scope, Realism, and Appropriateness: Projects and activities have a clear intellectual linkage to SMD science/technology and the science/technology of any associated research effort, are clearly organized, consistent with the requested budget, have clear lines of management responsibilities, and demonstrate a high probability for successful implementation.

2. Connections to Other NASA E/PO Activities: Projects and activities draw from audiences that have demonstrated interest in NASA and connect participants to the next level of engagement.

3. Partnerships/Sustainability: Projects and activities leverage and achieve sustainability through their intrinsic design and the involvement of appropriate local, regional, and/or national partners in their design, development, or dissemination. As appropriate, key aspects of projects and activities are replicable, scalable, and demonstrate potential for continuation beyond the period of direct NASA funding.

4. Evaluation: Projects and activities document their intended outcomes and use metrics to demonstrate progress toward and achievement of these outcomes and annual performance goals. Evaluation methodology is based on reputable models and techniques appropriate to the content and scale of the targeted activity, product, or project.

Relevance and Cost

5. Customer Needs Focus: Projects/activities have been designed to respond to a need identified by the education community, a customer, or a customer group.

6. Content: Projects and activities use NASA content, people or facilities to involve educators, students, and/or the public in NASA science, technology, engineering, and/or mathematics.

7. Resource Utilization: The adequacy, reasonableness, and realism of the proposed budget including demonstration of effective use of funds.

Program Balance Factors

8. Pipeline: Through the use of NASA Earth and space science, projects/activities/products make a demonstrable contribution to attracting diverse populations to careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).

9. Diversity: Through the use of NASA Earth and space science, projects/activities/products reach identified targeted groups. They contribute to the involvement, broad understanding, and/or training of underserved and/or underutilized groups in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).

Additional information can be found in the Explanatory Guides to SMD E/PO Evaluation Factors. Separate guides are available for ROSES and mission solicitation at: