Research and Evaluation

The goal of our Research and Evaluation department is to measure the Museum’s impact on guests and our community. Our interdisciplinary team of researchers and evaluators apply the best practices from a wide variety of social science fields to get to the core of the guest experience in a way that is meaningful to the Museum and the community of which we are a part.

Team members

  • Aaron Price, Ph.D. (director, research and evaluation)
  • Lauren R. Applebaum, Ph.D. (senior evaluator)
  • Anjylla Y. Foster, Ph.D. (researcher and project manager)
  • Fran Mast, M.Ed. (evaluator)
  • Cindy La Nguyen, Ph.D. (researcher and project manager)

Active projects

In addition to work supporting the Museum’s exhibit and educational programming, the team is also running longer-term studies supported by the National Science Foundation and others. They include:

  • A 5+ year study to investigate the long-term impacts of the Science Minors and Achievers program on its participants as they matriculate through college and start their careers.
  • An experimental study of a community health-focused field trip experience analyzed through a race and ethnic identity lens.
  • An investigation of how non-science themed art can be used to support science education in our Black Creativity Juried Art exhibit.
  • An investigation of how to integrate issues of equity into whole-school STEM education models.


To ensure our methods meet with best practices and to help advance the field, we pride ourselves on publishing findings in peer-review research journals and conferences.

Read our publications

External research at MSI

We welcome external investigators who wish to conduct research related to Museum programs or spaces. Learn more about our policies (PDF). If you would like to discuss conducting a study at the Museum, please contact us.