CMOA Website Study

$500 grant

In my sophomore year (09/2019~05/2020), I successfully applied to a $500 Small Undergraduate Research Grant (SURG, and specifically from the Barry Luokkala fund) to do an independent study under Dr. Sharon Carver’s supervision and in collaboration with the education department of the Carnegie Museum of Art (CMOA).

Timeline Fall 2019 Timeline Spring 2020

I wrote the proposal and completed the IRB protocol for the study: Improving Art Museums’ Websites to Support Teachers and Parents — a Case Study of the Carnegie Museum of Art’s Website. I synthesized a metric based on a literature review, conducted a comparative analysis on 24 art museum websites, developed and disseminated a survey, and designed and conducted a card-sorting user interview. This study was cut short because of COVID-19, but it’s a fun and educational experience!

Other than CMOA, art museums are selected based on CMOA benchmark study (10), NAEA’s impact study (5), and other research (8).

Based on the literature review, a metric of 6 items were developed:

  • Information Content
    • Currency: the time scope of the content’s validity is clear and updated
    • Clarity: the information is concise and accurate so it’s easy to understand
    • Richness: many useful and relevant information is provided
  • Information Presentation
    • Consistency: similar pieces of information are presented in similar fashions (color, font…)
    • Multimediality: necessary information is provided and is rich (example, data, visualization…)
  • Information Architecture
    • Navigability: structure (path to find information) is reasonable, supported, and intuitive

To understand what information should be presented on art museums’ websites and how to organize it to support teachers and parents planning to bring children to art museums, participants are invited for a card sorting user interview, in which they organize the navigational labels and content of different webpages to help them find the information they need for a task they selected.