Resource Centers

Marcussen & Associates is proud to have assisted the following projects with their successful proposals to the National Science Foundation.

CAISE

Center for Advancement of Informal Science Education (CAISE)

www.informalscience.org

Association of Science-Technology Centers, 818 Connecticut Avenue, 7th Floor, Washington, D.C. 20006
(202) 783-7200

CAISE works in collaboration with the National Science Foundation (NSF) Advancing Informal STEM Learning (AISL) Program to strengthen and advance the field of professional informal science education and its infrastructure by providing resources for practitioners, researchers, evaluators, and STEM-based professionals. CAISE also facilitates discussion, connection and collaboration across the ISE field—including in media (TV, radio, and film), science centers and museums, zoos and aquariums, botanical gardens and nature centers, cyberlearning and gaming, and youth, community, and out of school time programs. Established in 2007 with support from NSF, CAISE operates as a partnership between core staff at the Association of Science-Technology Centers in Washington, D.C. and co-principal investigators at informal science and academic institutions across the country.

Inquiry Group reports
The following reports are intended to strengthen and connect the informal STEM learning community by catalyzing conversations across the field around issues and topics of common concern:


Informal Science

Informal Science

www.informalscience.org

Center for Advancement of Informal Science Education (CAISE) Association of Science-Technology Centers, 818 Connecticut Avenue, 7th Floor, Washington, D.C. 20006
(202) 783-7200

A major initiative of CAISE is Informal Science – a central portal to project, research, and evaluation resources designed to support and connect the informal STEM education community in museums, media, public programs, and a growing variety of learning environments. The site contains the following types of resources:

  • Examples of projects funded by the National Science Foundation, as well as other public and private funders, designed to engage public audiences in informal STEM learning.

  • A literature base of peer-reviewed research papers, presentations, reports, and other work that explores the nature, context, and impact of informal STEM learning.

  • Front-end, formative, and summative evaluation reports to share project outcomes from a variety of informal STEM learning experiences and settings.

ExhibitFiles

ExhibitFiles

http://exhibitfiles.org

Association of Science-Technology Centers, 1025 Vermont Avenue, NW, Suite 500 Washington, DC  20005-6310
(202) 783-7200

ExhibitFiles is an online community of exhibit practitioners building a shared collection of exhibition records and reviews. This new website created and managed by the Association of Science-Technology Centers, Independent Exhibitions, and Ideum is a place to preserve and learn from exhibition experiences. Established with support from NSF, ExhibitFiles will grow with the community’s collaborators – so join now, post your exhibitions, add comments, and review the work of others.

References for Your Bookshelf

The following references are generally available through National Academies Press, AltaMira Press, ASTC Publications, or Amazon.
 

Identifying and Supporting Productive STEM Programs in Out-of-School Settings

Identifying and Supporting Productive STEM Programs in Out-of-School Settings

Board on Science Education, National Research Council, Washington, DC (2015)

To help educators in both school and out-of-school settings make informed decisions about how to best leverage the educational and learning resources in their community, this report identifies features of productive STEM programs in out-of-school settings, and how to evaluate and sustain such programs. Available online.

Principal Investigator's Guide Micro Site

Principal Investigator's Guide: Managing Evaluation in Informal STEM Education Projects

R. Bonney, L. Goodyear, K. Ellenbogen, and R. Hellenga (eds.). 2012. An initiative of the Visitor Studies Association, produced in partnership with the Center for Advancement of Informal Science Education.

This Guide is designed to help principal investigators and other leaders of informal STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) education projects integrate evaluation into all phases of project design, development, and implementation. See Chapter Three authored by Mary Marcussen, Choosing an Evaluator: Matching Project Needs with Evaluator Skills and Competencies. Available as downloadable PDF or online.

Surrounded by Science: Learning Science in Informal Environments

Surrounded by Science: Learning Science in Informal Environments

Fenichel, M. and H. A. Schweingruber (eds.). 2010. Board on Science Education, National Research Council. Washington, DC: National Academies Press.

This book provides case studies, illustrative examples, and probing questions for practitioners in informal science settings. Available online.

Learning Science in Places and Pursuits Book Cover

Learning Science in Informal Environments: People, Places, and Pursuits.

Bell, P., B. Lewenstein, A. W. Shouse and M. A. Feder (eds.). 2008. Committee on Learning Science in Informal Environments, National Research Council. Washington, DC: National Academies Press.

Learning Science in Places and Pursuits is an invaluable guide for program and exhibit designers, evaluators, staff of science-rich informal learning institutions and community-based organizations, scientists interested in educational outreach, federal science agency education staff, and K-12 science educators. Available online

Framework for Evaluating Impacts of Informal Science Education Projects Book Cover

Framework for Evaluating Impacts of Informal Science Education Projects

Friedman, A. J. (ed.). 2008. Report from a National Science Foundation Workshop

This handbook offers background about NSF's evolving reporting requirements and advice from evaluators working in the field about how to gather evidence of project impacts. Available online (960k PDF).

Creating Connections Book Cover

Creating Connections: Museums and the Public Understanding of Current Research

Chittendon, D., G. Farmelo and B. Lewenstein. 2004. New York, NY: AltaMira Press.

This compendium of essays is an invaluable resource for science museum professionals who want to guide their institutions toward a new understanding of and appreciation for current research.

Taking Science to School Book Cover

Taking Science to School: Learning and Teaching Science in Grades K-8

Duschul, R. A., H. A. Schweingruber and A. W. Shouse (eds.). 2007. Washington, CD: The National Academies Press.

This book provides a detailed examination of the role of research and evidence in determining what we know about children's learning of science.

In Principle, In Practice

In Principle, In Practice: Museums as Learning Institutions

Falk, J. H., L. D. Dierking and S. Foutz (eds). 2007. New York, NY: AltaMira Press.

This compilation of knowledge gained from years of studying in museums, combined with practical advice for fostering learning through museum experiences, is a valuable resource for museum professionals.

Fostering Active Prolonged Engagement Book Cover

Fostering Active Prolonged Engagement: the Art of Creating APE Exhibits

Humphrey, T., J. P. Gutwilll and the Exploratorium APE Team. 2005. San Francisco, CA: The Exploratorium.

A valuable resource for anyone interested in how and why visitors interact with exhibits the way they do.

Are We There Yet? Book Cover

Are We There Yet? Conversations about Best Practices in Science Education Exhibition Development

McLean, K. and C. McEver. 2004. San Francisco, CA: The Exploratorium.

This book is an inspiring first step toward a field-wide conversation: How do we embrace inquiry in our practice? How do we learn from the work others? How do we focus on the impacts we hope to achieve? How do we become more creative and innovative?

Visitor Voices Book Cover

Visitor Voices in Museum Exhibitions

McLean, K. and W. Pollock (eds.). Washington, DC: Association of Science-Technology Centers.

In sharing their experiences, the authors represented in this book speak of the power of visitor contributions to museum exhibitions.

Exemplary Science Book Cover

Exemplary Science In Informal Education Settings: Standards-based Success Stories

Yaeger, R. E. and J. H. Falk (eds.). 2008. Arlington, VA: NSTA Press.

This book provides 17 real-world examples of how science education reform has fostered learning in museums, science centers, zoos, and aquariums as well as on television, radio, and the internet.

Handbook for Small Science Centers Book Cover

Handbook for Small Science Centers

Yao, C. C. (ed.). 2006. New York, NY: AltaMira Press.

By mixing and matching the experiences chronicled here, a new museum will find just the advice, warnings, and inspirations they need for their unique institution.