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The Building Bridges Research Project at the London Science Museum: Using an Ethnographic Approach with Under-Represented Visitor Groups

Haywood, N; Moussouri, T; (2017) The Building Bridges Research Project at the London Science Museum: Using an Ethnographic Approach with Under-Represented Visitor Groups. Archaeology International , 20 pp. 69-73. 10.5334/ai-356. Green open access

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Abstract

This research is based on the London Science Museum’s ‘Building Bridges’ programme, which consists of a structured sequence of activities for Year Seven secondary school pupils (aged 11–12) and their families. The overall programme aim is to provide links between science at school, at the Science Museum, and as part of every-day family life. The activities occur over the duration of one academic year, and take place at the Museum, at school and at home. They include professional development courses for teachers, outreach visits to schools, visits by school groups to the Science Museum, and a family event. The research presented here is a collaboration between the UCL Institute of Archaeology and the Science Museum, and focuses on families from under-represented visitor groups whose child members are part of the ‘Building Bridges’ programme. Previous insights have highlighted that families visiting the Science Museum come from a narrow demographic profile, with those from minority ethnic backgrounds and from low socio-economic statuses consistently being under-represented (DBIS 2014). The research focus on under-represented visitors is important as the Science Museum seeks to inspire, engage and motivate the widest possible audience about science (NMSI 2009). The limited existing research on under-represented visitors, including families, has taken a predominantly museum-centred approach which often focuses on what families lack as a way to explain why they do not visit museums (Dawson 2014). Instead, this study takes a family-centred approach and focuses on the ‘hidden’ resources families have and how the Museum can tap into these. Indeed, findings from this research reveal the range of activities that families participate in, and the interests and aspirations that they have.

Type: Article
Title: The Building Bridges Research Project at the London Science Museum: Using an Ethnographic Approach with Under-Represented Visitor Groups
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.5334/ai-356
Publisher version: http://doi.org/10.5334/ai.356
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © 2017 The Author(s). This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC-BY 4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. See http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Institute of Archaeology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Institute of Archaeology > Institute of Archaeology Gordon Square
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10054434
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