Project Mission to Mars

Initial Publication Date: June 1, 2013


This is a collection of documents to prepare and evaluate students for their Project: Mission to Mars.

Used this activity? Share your experiences and modifications

Learning Goals

Students will be able to:

  • Practice creating a mission budget.
  • Define mission objectives, supporting science, and background research to substantiate mission.
  • Present a mission project presentation before a review board.
  • Identify mission personnel currently active in NASA/Astrobiology related studies.

Context for Use

This module exposes students to the realities of creating and seeking funding for a mission to Mars in a presentation format. Students use knowledge gained throughout Mars for Earthlings to support their work. This lesson serves as a culminating activity which requires understanding of the Martian surface via Earth analog concepts.

Description and Teaching Materials

Compiled In-Class Activities and Homework


Additional Assignment Resources

Teaching Notes and Tips

  1. For the review panel, ask other outside teachers/instructors to join the panel so students do not necessarily recognize their reviewers. TA's could be used as well.
  2. Students will be most successful in this project after several weeks of interpreting Mars data and relating Earth analog concepts.
  3. Encourage students to refer to the "Meet the Scientists" videos for potential personnel.


See the Mission to Mars grading rubric

References and Resources

Students participate in virtual projects and activities:

Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group (MEPAG):