ERIC Number: ED198043
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980-Nov
Reference Count: 0
A Preliminary Evaluation of the "Birds in Canada" Exhibit.
Clowes, Marya; Wolff, Lee
This study of the Birds in Canada exhibit (National Museum of Natural Sciences) examines the effectiveness of traditional and modern displays and the visitors' use of identification labels, text, map, and film. Over 700 museum visitors comprised the random sample. Evaluation methods included observation, interview, and cognitive testing, using pre- and posttests. Results indicate that while traditional and modern displays are equally effective, neither type increases visitors' knowledge of the subject matter. The displays have a poor holding power and the incidence of visitors' reading the text is low. Less than 5% of all visitors stop at the introductory text and map. A large segment of the sample were unable to identify specimens or had difficulty doing so. Finally, although the accompanying film is effective, only 32% of the visitors viewed it. Recommendations are to redesign and rewrite the information and to evaluate it before it becomes a part of the permanent display. Information panels should be moved to a place where visitors stop more frequently. Samples of tests, interview and testing results, and a description of data collecting methods are provided. (Author/KC)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: National Museum of Natural Sciences, Ottawa (Canada).