Museum visitors as an object of museological research

Dolák, Jan
July 2013
Problems of Museology;2013, Issue 1, p85
Academic Journal
The paper deals with museum visitors from the museology point of view. In addition to attention given to the forms and ways of museum communication, equal attention should be given to its recipient, i.e. the addressee. Museum visitors can be classified by different criteria (age, sex, domestic or foreign); very often, they are classified by the score of their visits to museums. The paper refers to specific approaches to visitor classification proposed by different writers on the subject (Sapanzha, Dean, Kolb, Scheiner, Cameron etc.), which are compared or challenged by the author for certain aspects. Visitor satisfaction is influenced by a whole range of factors, primarily the scenic design, the possibility to choose between group and individual visits, visitor-friendliness of the exhibition, etc. The personality of museum docent or guide in a museum may have a critical impact on the visitor's (un)acceptance of the exhibition. The recruitment and adequate training of the museum staff who come in direct contact with visitors still leave much to be desired. The effect a museum exhibition has is most often assessed by means of observing its visitors, making focused inquiries, questionnaire surveys and visitor interviews. Efforts should be made to convince the public that museums do their best for their visitors. Adequate communication of museum collections is to be regarded as one of the cornerstones of the democratization of museums as such.


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