2019 Pre-Conference Workshops

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Please note that all Pre-Conference Workshops require advanced registration. Be sure to reserve your space today.

Online Registration for Pre-Conference Workshops and the 2019 VSA Conference are available.

  Full Day Workshop Half-Day Workshop
Member $185 $95
Non-Member $250 $125



Full Day Workshops (9:00am - 4:00pm)

Evaluation can be Fun: Transforming Evaluation Techniques for Busy Museum Practitioners 
Marianna Adams and Jeanine Ancelet, Audience Focus Inc. 
Workshop location: Detroit Institute of Art. Participants are responsible for own transportation to location.

Learn how traditional evaluation practice can be adapted for the on-the-floor practitioner. Investigate ways to embed visitor evaluation in programs or exhibitions that make data collection more time-efficient for you and a more enjoyable activity for the visitor. Practice concrete techniques at the host-museum and ideas you can take away for your own institution—for yourself and as a tool to help train your coworkers in evaluation. Help create new and innovative methods with other museum practitioners. Most importantly, have fun and inspire yourself at the same time!

Developing Rubrics: Authentic Measures of Informal Learning
Amanda Krantz and Erin Wilcox, Randi Korn & Associates
Workshop location: The Westin Book Cadillac Hotel

In visitor studies, we are often required to provide measurable, reliable findings to demonstrate impact. Yet, measuring learning that takes place in an informal setting is extremely challenging.The impact an exhibition or program can have on one visitor may vary considerably from its impact on another visitor, and these often subtle differences in impact are difficult to measure through conventional means of evaluation. Through large and small group work, workshop participants will learn to develop and use rubrics, which provide an authentic way to measure the impact of informal educational programs and exhibitions while at the same time, abide by rigorous evaluation standards. Participants will leave with a draft of a rubric as well as the skills to continue using rubrics in the future. If possible, participants should bring to the workshop a description of a program or exhibition, including the visitor outcomes.


Morning Workshops (9:00am - 12:00pm)

Dabbling in the Data - Hands-On Data Analysis for Teams
Justine Wolitzer and Corey Newhouse, Public Profit 
Workshop location: The Westin Book Cadillac Hotel

Data can help museums and cultural institutions target services and tell their story, but analysis can be intimidating and frustrating, especially for those with limited formal training in evaluation. In this skill-building session, participants will learn activities that can help teams make meaning out of their data, yielding actionable insights and powerful stories. Session participants will receive a copy of Dabbling in the Data, a facilitators' guidebook that provides step-by-step instructions for 15 interactive team activities that organizations can use to make meaning of their data. Participants will practice activities and learn how to link the methods to specific learning needs in their organizations. 


Afternoon Workshops (1:00pm - 4:00pm)

Visualizing Survey Data: Practical Tips and Tricks for Reporting
Nick Visscher, Denver Zoo and Chris Cadenhead, Pacific Science Center
Workshop location: The Westin Book Cadillac Hotel

Do you want your survey data to be seen, remembered, and used by staff and stakeholders?  Where do you begin? In this workshop participants will learn about basic design principles for effective data visualization using practical examples from common survey question types that many museum researchers and evaluators use (multiple choice, select all that apply, rating scales, open-ended response, etc.). Participants will work together to create some of their own data visualizations using Microsoft Excel and leave with helpful tips, tricks, and templates they can use with their own data for their own organizations. Participants should come with a fully charged laptop, and a basic working knowledge of Microsoft Excel. This workshop is co-sponsored by the Data Viz & Reporting and Zoo & Aquarium Focused Interest Groups.


To register for the 2019 VSA Conference or Pre-Conference Workshops, click HERE.