We conducted a comprehensive learning research study at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago and the Harvard Museum of Natural History in Cambridge, MA to measure the effects of our exhibits. We recruited 250 visitors (ages 9 – 15) and randomly assigned pairs of visitors to one of four conditions. In the first two conditions the dyads spent 10 minutes interacting with different versions of our focal exhibit. In the third condition, they watched a 10-minute video about evolution and the Tree of Life. And, in the final condition, there was no exhibit interaction – this gave us our baseline measurement. We video recorded the study pairs who interacted with the exhibits. For all four conditions, we individually interviewed each child using a 52-item assessment consisting of both open and closed-ended questions.
Publications and Presentations:
- Going Deep: Supporting Collaborative Exploration of Evolution in Natural History Museums
- How is a human like a banana? Conceptions of humans as part of the natural world
- Active Prolonged Engagement: When Does it Become Active Prolonged “Learning”?
- Preliminary findings presented at the Society for Research in Child Development Biennial Meeting (2013)