Un-supervised evaluation of virtual museums – the Uppåkra App as a case-study

Paper
Sorin Hermon, Cyprus

Evaluation of the museum experience is a key subject for research since many years. Many evaluations rely on simple or more complex questionnaires, analysis of behavioral patterns of visitors within museums / archaeological sites or direct interviews with visitors.  Such evaluations aim at generally understand the visitors’ museum experience, their learning curvature, added cultural / entertainment value, etc. Recent developments in museum environments, and in particular the raise of a new kind of museums, namely the “virtual museums”, require a new approach to such evaluations.

Within the framework of the EU-funded project V-MUST (Grant Agreement 270404) a research team from The Cyprus Institute and the University of Lund has begun a research aimed at defining innovative approaches and strategies for evaluating virtual museums in general, starting with apps for mobile devices. In particular, research focuses on measuring and characterizing the “noise” that occurs between the two ends of such a mobile applications: at one end being the team who made it and on the other the visitors who experience its content. The paper will present first results of this research and propose a framework for evaluating such apps. Moreover, the implications for defining and refining the definition of virtual museums will be discussed.

 

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