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ASTC Annual Conference 2016


Tampa, Florida

The NISE Network will have many activities and professional development opportunities at the Association of Science-Technology Centers (ASTC) annual conference:

More information:

NISE Network Happy Hour

NISE Network partners are invited to gather together informally (no need to RSVP); all are welcome!

Friday, September 23, 2016 
5:00 - 7:00 PM

Location: The Sail Pavilion
333 S Franklin St, Tampa, FL

Booth and Exhibit Hall

The NISE Network will have a booth #723 & #822 in the exhibit hall featuring public engagement activities and resources including information about upcoming projects opportunities.

  • Saturday September 24, 2016, 10:00 AM - 5:30 PM
  • Sunday September 25, 2016, 9:00 AM - 6:00 PM

Communities of Practice Meet-ups

Public Engagement with Science Community of Practice
Informal get together - come learn and share about current and upcoming work:

  • Friday, September 23, 2016, 4:00 4:50 PM
  • Location: Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel, Meeting Room 11


Partner Breakfast

The NISE Network is hosting a breakfast for staff from partner institutions (no need to RSVP)

  • Sunday, September 25, 2016
    7:30 - 8:30 AM
    Location: Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel, Meeting Rooms 8/9

Staff from NISE Net partner institutions are invited to an informal breakfast to learn about transition plans to the National Informal STEM Education Network, new project opportunities, and to meet other Network partners from across the country.


The NISE Network activities and information about engaging the public in current science, engineering, technology will be featured in the following sessions:

Embedded Evaluation Methods and Sample-Specific Incentivizing Strategies: Successes, Challenges, and Lessons Learned
Saturday, September 24, 2016: 11:00 AM - 12:15 PM
This poster will provide an overview of creative data collection and incentive methods used for the evaluation of the Museum & Community Partnerships project, an extension of the Nanoscale Informal Science Education Network (NISE Net).  Come learn from our experiences and share your own related successes and challenges!

  • Poster Leader: Chris Cardiel, Oregon Museum of Science and Industry
  • Presenters: Smirla Ramos-Montanez, Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, Maggie Sandford, Science Museum of Minnesota, Katie Todd, Museum of Science and Chris Cardiel, Oregon Museum of Science and Industry 

How Audiences Find Relevance: Research Methods and Findings in Two Innovative Exhibitions
Saturday, September 24, 2016: 11:00 AM - 12:15 PM
A comparative look at research/evaluation on two museum exhibitions, both examining how family groups discuss content in relation to their lives. Take-aways include best practices for reflective interview techniques, analyzing extensive data sets, intentionality in exhibit design, as well as discussion of findings, and lessons learned via emergent challenges.

  • Poster Leader: Marjorie Bequette, Science Museum of Minnesota
  • Presenter: Maggie Ryan Sandford, Science Museum of Minnesota

Broader Impacts + ISE = Opportunities
Saturday, September 24, 2016: 2:00 PM - 3:15 PM
How do scientists and ISE professionals work together to engage the public in current scientific research? This session will explore models of collaboration between scientists and ISE professionals and institutions, and discuss findings from a new CAISE white paper on Broader Impacts Through Informal STEM Education.

  • Session Leader: Jamie Bell, Center for Advancement of Informal Science Education (CAISE)
  • Presenters: Roxanne Hughes, National High Magnetic Field Lab, Bruce McFadden, Florida Museum of Natural History, and Rae Ostman, Arizona State University 
  • Download Powerpoint presentation

Engaging Adult and Teen Audiences in Socio-Scientific Discussions: A Mosquito Engineering Forum Case Study
Sunday, September 25, 2016: 1:15 PM - 2:30 PM
Genetically engineered mosquitoes can reduce the spread of malaria. Should we release them into the wild? Learn how museums across the country engaged the public in forum discussions about this topic, participate in the mosquito forum activity, and consider how you might adapt the format to your own museum.

  • Session Leader: Caroline Lowenthal, Museum of Science
  • Presenters: Eric Havel, Chabot Space & Science Center, Dan Stanton, Chabot Space & Science Center, Melissa Telemeco, Pacific Science Center, Michelle Kortenaar, Sciencenter, Erin Thelen, New York Hall of Science and Elizabeth Slagus, New York Hall of Science

No Kids, No Problem: Cultivating Adult Audiences at Museums and Science Centers
Sunday, September 25, 2016: 10:15 AM - 11:30 AM
Beyond the field trips, family sleepovers, and tours how can museums and science centers attract adult learners? What are the resources and opportunities that are unique to a museum setting? How do we facilitate accessible science communication to audiences that "love" our institutions but haven’t visited in over a decade?

  • Session Leader: Suzanne Morris, American Museum of Natural History
  • Presenters: Su Oh, Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, Monica Garcia-Itchoak, Red Iron Consulting, Caroline Lowenthal, Museum of Science and Gayle Schmidt, New York Botanical Garden

Protecting Our Visitors: Innovative, Ethical, and Responsible Research and Evaluation Oversight
Sunday, September 25, 2016: 3:00 PM - 4:15 PM

As research and evaluation studies within science centers and museums increase in number and complexity, it is more important than ever that we protect our visitors (and staff) through ethical and responsible R&E practices.  Join our diverse panel of presenters to share resources and discuss successes, challenges, and lessons learned!

  • Session Leader: Chris Cardiel, Oregon Museum of Science and Industry
  • Session Moderator: Chris Cardiel, Oregon Museum of Science and Industry
  • Presenters: Toni Dancu, Exploratorium, Zdanna King, Science Museum of Minnesota and Elizabeth Kollmann, Museum of Science 

Beyond the Voting Station: Designing exhibit devices about science and society
Monday, September 26, 2016: 10:15 AM - 11:30 AM  Tampa Convention Center
Facilitated programs in museums can nurture rich conversations about societal impacts of science and technology, but in exhibits, we often just ask our visitors to vote yes, no, or maybe. Can we dive deeper? What are the challenges and outcomes of designing exhibit devices about issues in science and society?

  • Session Leader: Jayatri Das, Chief Bioscientist, The Franklin Institute, Philadelphia, PA
  • Presenters: Elizabeth Kollmann, Museum of Science, Boston, MA; and Patricia Ward, Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago, IL

New National Collaborative Network Provides Opportunities for U.S. Museums and Science Centers Around STEM Topics
Monday, September 26, 2016: 2:45 PM - 4:00 PM, Tampa Convention Center, Room 25
Learn about the new National Informal STEM Education Network and how your organization can get involved.  By collaborating together, museums and science centers can better serve our local audiences and meet our strategic goals. Funded network projects include space sciences, earth science, sustainability, and societal implications of technology.

  • Session Leader: Catherine McCarthy, Science Museum of Minnesota
  • Presenters: Paul Martin, Science Museum of Minnesota, Larry Bell, Museum of Science, Rae Ostman, Arizona State University
  • Download Powerpoint presentation

Getting Your Institution Ready for the August 21, 2017 "All American" Solar Eclipse
Monday, September 26, 2016: 2:45 PM-4:00 PM, Tampa Convention Center

  • Session Leader:Dennis Schatz, Pacific Science Center
  • Presenters: Andrew Fraknoi, Foothill College and Member of AAS Task Force for Eclipse 2017, Vivian White, Astronomical Society of the Pacific

Get ready for the astronomical event of the decade.  Join informal science educators from museums, astronomy groups, and national networks to learn and discuss plans across the country for the eclipse. Take this opportunity to compare plans with other institutions and coordinate where appropriate.



Attached Files
Attachment Size
astc_breakfast_2016-09-14.pptx (23.48 MB) 23.48 MB
astc_broader_impacts_2016-09-20.pptx (9.96 MB) 9.96 MB
astc_new_network_session_2016-09-25.pptx (41.55 MB) 41.55 MB