Portal To The Public
Portal to the Public is a program designed to assist informal science education (ISE) institutions as they seek to bring scientists and public audiences together in face-to-face public interactions that promote appreciation and understanding of current scientific research and its application. The program model was implemented and evaluated at eight museums and science centers during 2007-2011, with support from a National Science Foundation grant. We invite you to watch this video for more information.
The Portal to the Public project team has produced an Implementation Manual as a guide for institutions planning to implement a Portal to the Public-type program. It includes the Catalog of Professional Development Elements, a practical guide to creating and facilitating professional development experiences for scientists.
Click here to read more about the Implementation Manual and for more information on downloading a copy.
Portal to the Public is a collaborative project, engaging the following institutions:
- Pacific Science Center - Seattle, WA
- Explora - Albuquerque, NM
- North Museum of Natural History and Science - Lancaster, PA
- The Institute for Learning Innovation - Edgewater, MD
- Museum of Life and Science - Durham, NC
- Discovery Center of Springfield - Springfield, MO
- Explorit - Davis, CA
- Discovery Center Museum - Rockford, IL
- Adventure Science Center - Nashville, TN
The Four Main Components of Portal to the Public
These events bring scientists and public audiences together in face-to-face interactions and are facilitated by scientists who have participated in professional development. Learn More
Develop, evaluate and disseminate modular professional development elements that ISE staff can facilitate to prepare scientist volunteers to work with public audiences. Elements include workshop activities, resources for one-on-one support and written documents.
Research the implementation and outcome of the professional development and public programs across all three museum sites. The overarching question is, "How can ISE institutions successfully engage their visitors with current science by featuring scientists in programming."
Support A Professional Learning Community
Endeavor to support a professional learning community of institutions and individuals committed to improving the public understanding and appreciation of current science research. Our first major activity to support a professional learning community was the Synthesis Meeting held in Jan. 2008. Learn more
This material is based upon work supported by National Science Foundation under Grant No. DRL-0639021. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.
For general inquiries please contact Dana Vukajlovich, Portal to the Public Network Project Manager at Pacific Science Center: email@example.com or (206) 269-5768.