Association of Science-Technology Centers Incorporated (by Inverness Research Associates), Washington,
An Invisible Infrastructure: Institutions of Informal Science Education:
Volume 1: Findings from a National Survey of Institutions
of Informal Science
Volume 2: Appendixes: Survey Form and Detailed Data (available from
ASTC, $30 for members, $36 for nonmembers at 202/783-7200).
Abstract: This report documents the wide impact science centers
and other institutions of informal science education have on schools.
"Children, Curiosity and Museums." Children Today; v9 n1,
pp.16, 22-23, Jan-Feb 1980.
Abstract: Based on his experience and enjoyment of museums the author
suggests how museums may best influence children.
Brown, John Seely; Allan Collins; Paul Duguid.
"Situated Cognition and the Culture of Learning."
Educational Researcher; v18 n1, pp. 32-42, Jan-Feb 1989.
Abstract: Conventional schooling too often ignores the influence
of school culture on what is learned in school. Knowledge is situated,
being in part a product of the activity, context, and culture in
which it is developed and used; this is known as cognitive apprenticeship.
Implications for understanding, learning, and teaching are discussed.
"Critical Barriers to Science Learning"
Outlook; 29; pp. 3-23, 1978.
Abstract: The author illustrates and discusses some critical barrier
phenomena, such as the optics of mirrors and heat and cold, which
most people have difficulty extending beyond an everyday understanding.
"Messing About in Science." In The Informed Vision: Essays
on Learning and Human Nature. New York: Agathon Press, 1974. pp.
Abstract: There are three major phases of good science teaching;
teaching that does not mix all three is not likely to be optimal.
"Constructivist Learning Theory"
in The Museum and the Needs of People. CECA (International Committee
of Museum Educators) Conference. Jerusalem, Israel, 15-22 October
Abstract:The latest catchword in educational circles is "constructivism,
" applied both to learning theory and to epistemology---both to
how people learn, and to the nature of knowledge. We don't need
to succumb to each new fad, but we do need to think about our work
in relation to theories of learning and knowledge. So we need to
ask: what is constructivism, what does it have to tell us that is
new and relevant, and how do we apply it to our work?
"The Constructivist Museum"
in the Journal of Education in Museums, #15, 1995. pp. 1-15.
Abstract: Constructivism is appropriate as a basis for museum education,
if we consider the wide range of museum visitors. How can we accommodate
this diverse audience and facilitate their learning from our objects
on their voluntary, short visits?
"Learning in Interactive Environments: Prior Knowledge
and New Experience"
Public Institutions for Personal Learning: Establishing a Research
John Falk and Lynn Dierking, Editors. Washington: American Association
of Museums, 1995.
Abstract: Educators often focus on the ideas they want their audiences
to have. But research has shown that a learner's prior knowledge
often confounds an educator's best efforts to deliver ideas accurately.
Neglect of prior knowledge can result in the audience learning something
opposed to the educator's intentions, no matter how well those intentions
are executed in an exhibit, book, or lecture.
Russell, Robert L.
Issues and Opportunities: Science Museums and Schools: Executive
Informal Science, Inc. August 1995. 25 pp.
Abstract: The Association of Science-Technology Centers (ASTC) received
a planning grant from the National Science Foundation's Informal
Science Education Program to examine the role of science centers
in formal education. This paper reports those findings which will
be used to assist ASTC and its members plan future initiatives in
support of science education in schools.
Semper, Robert J.
"Science Museums as Environments for Learning".
Physics Today; v43 n11, pp. 50-56, Nov 1990.
Abstract: Science museums have evolved into unique educational institutions
with particular attributes for science learning that are hard to
duplicate in almost any other setting.