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Exhibit Evaluation at the Nature Museum

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Tags: public programs, Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, exhibits, exhibit evaluation, volunteer

Created: 2/13/2013      Updated: 8/10/2016

The Nature Museum continually evaluates visitor usage of our permanent and temporary exhibits. Why do we do it?

According to Exhibit Evaluator Hannah Im, “It is important for us to know how visitors experience different exhibits. It allows us to understand how they are currently used, and what improvements we can make in the development of upcoming exhibits.”  

Hannah Im
Hannah Im

At the Nature Museum, we use two methods to collect data on exhibit usage- observation and interviews.

Observation: You may have seen our volunteer evaluators in the galleries with clipboards and stopwatches. They are observing visitors and collecting data about time spent in the different areas of an exhibit.

Interviews: As you leave an exhibit, you may be approached by another volunteer with a clipboard. These volunteers are collecting information about what visitors learn during their time in an exhibit.

Hannah Im with museum visitors

Using these methods, our Exhibits team is able to build a clear picture of how visitors use exhibits, what they learn, and suggestions for improvement. Please do your part to improve our exhibits by completing the short questionnaires when requested. You may even get a sticker!

Volunteers are essential to the Nature Museum’s exhibit evaluation project. Volunteer Allan Zemsky has been working with us on the project for almost a year. Alan says, "I enjoy Visitor Studies at the Nature Museum because you get to observe our guests in action at the various exhibits. I can in turn give feedback to the administration so they can better assist our guests in the future."

Interested in volunteering with the exhibit evaluation team? It’s a great behind-the-scenes way to contribute with flexible hours to fit your schedule. Just email volunteer@naturemuseum.org to get started.

Heather Grance
Manager of Public Programs

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