Learning in the Museum examines major issues and shows how research in visitor studies and the philosophy of education can be applied to facilitate a meaningful educational experience in museums.
Hein combines a brief history of education in public museums, with a rigorous examination of how the educational theories of Dewey, Piaget, Vygotsky and subsequent theorists relate to learning in the museum.
Surveying a wide range of research methods employed in visitor studies is illustrated with examples taken from museums around the world, Hein explores how visitors can best learn from exhibitions which are physically, socially, and intellectually accessible to every single visitor. He shows how museums can adapt to create this kind of environment, to provide what he calls the 'constructivist museum'.
Providing essential theoretical analysis for students, this volume also serves as a practical guide for all museum professionals on how to adapt their museums to maximize the educational experience of every visitor.
George E. Hein is a Professor at Lesley College, Cambridge, Massachusetts. He is co-author of Active Assessment of Active Science (1991) and a leading authority on museum education.