A participatory approach to the evaluation of participatory museum research projects

Seale, Jane; Garcia Carrizosa, Helena; Rix, Jonathan; Sheehy, Kieron and Hayhoe, Simon (2021). A participatory approach to the evaluation of participatory museum research projects. International Journal of Research and Method in Education, 44(1) pp. 20–40.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/1743727X.2019.1706468


In this paper we will describe, justify and critique a participatory approach that we have developed in order to evaluate the success of a participatory research project that was exploring ways of making museum learning experiences more inclusive for adults who have a diverse range of access preferences. Because we were researching in a unique space at the intersection of inclusive museum education, inclusive technologies and participatory research we have needed to develop an original evaluation approach; informed by methods and frameworks derived from other fields. We present examples of the kind of evaluation information that the framework elicited and use this as a basis to critique the strengths and weaknesses of the framework. Our experience of using creative methods for eliciting evaluation data suggest that useful information about participation can be revealed but that further improvements can be made in order to make the research experience more participatory.

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