2012 Annual Science Report

Massachusetts Institute of Technology Reporting  |  SEP 2011 – AUG 2012

EPO Activity: MIT Astrobiology Course EPO Report

Project Progress

During MIT’s winter session (IAP) of 2012, EPO Lead Phoebe Cohen taught a two week mini-course on Astrobiology for MIT undergraduate students. The class met for 10 consecutive days, 2 hours each day, and combined lectures and labs / active-learning activities including think-pair-share, hands on experiments, use of NAI-funded Virtual Field Trips, and a mock grant writing assignment. The course included multiple guest lectures from within the MIT astrobiology community and beyond, including a lecture by team PI Roger Summons, a lab tour by PI Tanja Bosak, and a skype lecture by Icy Moons PI Kevin Hand. The course was very successful and sparked interest in astrobiology for many of the 15 undergraduate students. There were also a few auditors in the class including a student from the MIT Science Writing program and a member of the local community. Please see attached for student evaluations of the course and a complete schedule of the course which details lecture topics, activities, and assignments.