NASA SBIR 2003 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER:03-B7.01-9093 (For NASA Use Only - Chron: 033912)
SUBTOPIC TITLE:Development of Improved Outreach Planning and Implementation Products
PROPOSAL TITLE:Bodies in Space - Online Education for Secondary School Students

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Clinical Tools, Inc.
431 W Franklin St. #30
Chapel Hill ,NC 27516 - 2319
(919) 960 - 8118

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Mary P Metcalf
431 W Franklin St. #24
Chapel Hill ,NC  27516 -2319
(919) 960 - 8118
U.S. Citizen or Legal Resident: Yes

This SBIR application proposes to develop, evaluate, and implement an Internet-based educational outreach site focusing on the varied biological effects of microgravity. We will develop a website,, to host the curriculum and courses on the Internet. The curriculum development process will be based on reviews of existing secondary school biology curricula and current NASA publications regarding microgravity and its effects on physiology. The curriculum will be further revised by microgravity researchers, educational design specialists, and teaching physicians. Learning theories that encourage skills and knowledge transfer, such as cognitive flexibility theory, will provide the foundation of the curriculum. Modules will be learner-oriented and support the development of decision-making skills through interactive scenarios. Conveying the excitement of space research, will focus on relaying information in a manner that will enhance the meaningfulness of the investigations. The website shall provide enhanced remote access allowing secondary school students the ability to access, learn, and participate in science activities. Such interaction will enhance the next generation of explorers' knowledge about and interest in the progress of NASA missions and discoveries.

The site is designed primarily for co-curricular use by secondary level biology educators as part of NASA's outreach efforts. The course can be used by public and private high schools, and should have particular appeal to private and charter schools, and for use with home-schooled children. This model can be applied to other NASA research to create other courses as part of a whole curriculum on space science. The course can be linked from current NASA education pages (e.g.,

The course will be designed for potential use as an interactive museum exhibit providing information on and visual representations of the effects of microgravity on the human body during space travel. The interactive graphical manipulations developed for the course may be utilized in biology educational software and Web applications. The curriculum design and graphical interfaces, as well as course evaluation and assessment methods, may be used to present other research to various target populations.