This year’s online National Science Week events will be evaluated by a team of academic researchers at the University of Sydney. Help them analyse the effectiveness of online science engagement by participating in the national online event presenter survey and by sending an online audience survey to your attendees.
Do you know who attends your events, why they come, what they expect and what they get out of them? Quite often, as many Science Week events are held outdoors in public venues, very little is known about the audience experience. With no event registration required, it can be difficult for event presenters to capture feedback from audiences who may not respond to general call outs to complete satisfaction surveys.
This year, with most events online, there is an opportunity for National Science Week event holders to learn about the impact of their efforts and the effectiveness of online science engagement.
We encourage Science Week event presenters to participate in this national research project that will be conducted by the Science Communication, Outreach, Participation and Engagement (SCOPE) research group at the University of Sydney.
The evaluation builds on preliminary research conducted in previous years, looking at public perceptions of science and opportunities for informal learning. It will be led by Associate Professor Alice Motion and Dr Chiara O’Reilly. Additional investigators are Olivia McRae and Ellie Downing, two PhD candidates whose research on science communication practices and impact is informed by their professional experience as science communicators, and Dr Reyne Pullen, a lecturer in chemistry education and co-supervisor of Olivia McRae.
There are two surveys, one for audience members and one for presenters and more detailed information about the SCOPE National Science Week research project is available here.
How to get involved
- First, you need to have some kind of event registration mechanism in order to collect attendee emails for all of your events and activities.
- After the event, contact your audience members and send them a link to the attendee survey.
Please note, the researchers ask that you use this text for sending via email:
Subject: Evaluation for [event name here] – how did we do?
Dear [audience member],
Thank you for attending [event name here]. To help understand how the online event was for you, we ask that you complete a questionnaire.
This questionnaire has been devised by researchers from the SCOPE (Science Communication, Outreach, Participation, and Education) Group at the University of Sydney. They are conducting a study into the experiences of online science communication events as part of this year’s National Science Week, endorsed by Inspiring Australia.
The study involves the below questionnaire, with a voluntary option for a follow up interview. There is a Participant Information Statement at the start of the questionnaire which explains more about what the research is trying to achieve, what is required and further details about the questionnaire.
Only the researchers named in the Participant Information Statement will have access to the raw data of the questionnaire, i.e. your answers. A de-identified (anonymous) dataset will be shared with Inspiring Australia to meet their reporting requirements.
If you have any questions, please contact the research lead Associate Professor Alice Motion at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone (+61 2 8627 0823).
- Finally, after you have run your event please complete the event presenter survey.
Both surveys will open on Friday 14 August and close on 8 September 2020.
Please note that the researchers need you to use the survey links supplied rather than creating a new survey using their questions. Your cooperation will help create a consistent national picture of this year’s festival.
Survey results will be used to evaluate National Science Week 2020 and to conduct a published research study entitled Public Perceptions of Science and Experiences of Online Science Events. The research team will also follow up with selected audience members and presenters and conduct interviews.
Raw survey data can also be made available to you by providing your details to the researchers.
Don’t have an event registration planned?
If your science week online offering does not require a registration (e.g. it’s a self-guided podcast or YouTube clip) we would be grateful if you could invite your audience to participate in the evaluation using the suggested text below:
Give us your feedback!
We would love to hear how this (online event/experience/ podcast/) was for you! Please tell us by completing this questionnaire devised by researchers from the SCOPE (Science Communication, Outreach, Participation, and Education) Group at the University of Sydney. They are conducting a study into the experiences of online science communication events as part of this year’s National Science Week, endorsed by Inspiring Australia.
For more information about the National Science Week evaluation project please email A/Prof Alice Motion.
Image: Mathew Schwartz, Unsplash