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Forces Shaping the Future of Museums: Visitors

Smithsonian Education
Dr. Colette Dufresne-Tassé Codirector of the masters in museology program at the University of Montréal and chair of ICOM-CECA Dr. Sue Allen Director of Visitor Research and Evaluation at the Exploratorium in San Francisco, and a Program Officer, Division of Research on Learning in Formal and Informal Settings at the National Science Foundation Donald W. Reynolds Center for American Art and Portraiture (McEvoy Auditorium) Washington, DC Wednesday, April 22, 2009 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm The lecture, introduced by Stephanie Norby, Director of the Smithsonian Center for Education and Museum Studies, features Colette Dufresne-Tassé, Ph.D., codirector of the masters in museology program at the University of Montréal and chair of ICOM-CECA, and Sue Allen, Ph.D., director of visitor research and evaluation at the Exploratorium in San Francisco, and currently a program officer in the Division of Research on Learning in Formal and Informal Settings at the National Science Foundation. Dr. Dufresne-Tassés topic is: Lets Revisit Learning: Establishing Better Dialogues between Adult Visitors and Curators in Exhibition Spaces. Dr. Dufresne-Tassé argues that learning has been over-emphasized in analyses of adult visitors experience in exhibitions when it actually represents only a small portion of their experience. She will discuss the process of meaning making and how it can provide a better understanding of what visitors think, imagine, and feel. Using recent visitor research, Dr. Dufresne-Tassé will show how meaning making can help museums establish better dialogues between the visitor and the curator. Dr. Sue Allens topic is: Video-Based Evidence of Learning as a Process. How can we identify learning when it happens on the exhibition floor? In this interactive presentation, Dr. Allen will show videotapes of visitors using interactive exhibits at the Exploratorium and discuss different principles of learning. During the screening, audience members will use these principles to look for evidence of learning and how the exhibition environment supports or limits it. (Note that portions of Dr. Allens presentation were not recorded.)

Visitors in National Museum

Smithsonian Archives - History Div
See Neg. #SIA2009-2191 for the same view without visitors.

Visitors, including children, are viewing entomology exhibits in the United States National Museum, now the National Museum of Natural History. Several different types of exhibit cases can be seen.

Visitors at the Museum of Merchandise

Archives of American Art
1 photographic print : b&w ; 21 x 26 cm.

The Visitor

Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden

The Visitor

Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden

NMHT Visitors

Smithsonian Institution Archives
Digital contact sheet available. Requested from Photographic Services Division by Office of Public Affairs.

Japanese visitors at the National Museum of History and Technology (NMHT), now known as the National Museum of American History, with Mrs. Okada.

Zoo Visitors Following the Zebra Trail

Smithsonian Archives - History Div
Featured in TORCH, August 1977

Balloon-toting young visitors following the National Zoological Park's new Zebra Trail, 30 June 1977.

Guestbook from the Powell family vacation cottage

National Museum of African American History and Culture

[Visitor Pass 35]

Anacostia Community Museum
Visitor Pass "35" on a metal chain lanyard. Icon matches that of the Canadian Peace Conference press pass

Pope Receiving Visitor

Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum
Interior, striped wall, framed picture hanging; a pope, seated on a low pedestal under a rectangular canopy, speaks to a kneeling visitor. The visitor is entreating him with a document, while two cardinals flanking the pope and two courtiers at some distance to the right look on. Graphite marks of initial drawing, including sketched head of third courtier, remain throughout.

Insect Zoo Visitors

Smithsonian Institution Archives
Digital contact sheet available.

Visitors at the Insect Zoo at the National Museum of Natural History.

Insect Zoo Visitors

Smithsonian Institution Archives
Digital contact sheet available.

Visitors at the Insect Zoo at the National Museum of Natural History.

Costumed visitors in NMAH

Smithsonian Archives - History Div
Featured in TORCH, December 1983

Visitors to the National Museum of American History (NMAH) Military History Hall, costumed in Revolutionary attire for the Treaty of Paris Bicentennial celebration held on the grounds around the Washington Monument.

Visitors Viewing Friendship 7

Smithsonian Archives - History Div
Visitors viewing "Friendship 7" in the Quonset Hut of the National Air and Space Museum in the South Yard. "Friendship 7" is the Mercury spacecraft in which astronaut John H. Glenn, Jr., became the first American to orbit the Earth. On February 20, 1962, Glenn circled the Earth three times. The space flight lasted 4 hours and 55 minutes, and "Friendship 7" landed in the Atlantic Ocean.

Visitors on the Carousel

Smithsonian Archives - History Div
Featured in TORCH, August 1988

Young visitors ride the carousel outside Arts & Industries (A&I) Building at the Smithsonian.
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