Better Together

Maybe three is the magic number for great AAM session. Two of my favorites today brought together three unique perspectives to triangulate a common theme. First, Tsivia Cohen, Minda Borun, and Suzanne Gaskins shared their views on museum research as an educator, in-house evaluator and university researcher respectively. Their presentations played off each other beautifully and organically illustrated the different learning styles central to the research presented.

Later, the Huntington Library, Art Collections, & Botanical Gardens, the International Spy Museum, and the Harry S. Truman Presidential Library and Museum invited us into three distinctive immersive environments. The “town hall” forum used in place of Q&A encouraged the audience to make connections across the three presentations, a nice complemented to the session’s theme of adult learning.

For me, an intriguing connection between the two sessions emerged: Research applying Kolb’s experiential learning theory suggests much of the adult population prefer “puzzle-mystery” learning activities. Perhaps this is why the immersive environments, which leverage applied problem solving, are so popular with adult audiences.—Elizabeth Pokel, student, Harvard Graduate School of Education

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