Visitor Evaluation: An Exploratory Study for the USAF Museum
AIR FORCE INST OF TECH WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB OH
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Research was conducted to determine a viable museum visitor evaluation method for use at the USAF Museum, Wright-Patterson AFB, OH. A 44 item questionnaire was developed, tested, and administered to 288 visitors to measure attitudes and collect information regarding the USAF Museum visitor base. Constructs in the questionnaire included motivation for visiting, evaluation of the museum experience, transportation issues, general awareness of museum services, and demographic information. Analysis of the data indicated that enthusiasm for aviation and aviation history were the primary motivating factors and that advertising had little or no effect on visitation. In addition, the USAF Museum was rated as one of the best museums overall that respondents had visited. Also, a large percentage of visitors came from outside a 150 mile radius from Dayton, OH and found the USAF Museum relatively easy to locate. Finally, a significant percentage of respondents were not aware that admission to the USAF Museum was free. The data presented valuable information for museum management for decision making purposes, and presented a model for future modifications to or development of visitor evaluation measurement instruments.