Title:Using the Web to Change the Relation Between a Museum and Its Users
Authors:Martin Bazley, Dave Patten, Roland Jackson, Martin King
Publication:MW98: Museums and the Web 1998

The STEM project encourages students and teachers to develop their own perspectives, projects and educational resources related to the Science Museum and to make them available on the Web. All contributions are available through a database accessible by particular criteria or freely searchable. At an educational level, the project is exploring the extent to which students and teachers can be motivated and supported, through this medium, to reflect on their experience of a visit (real or online), and thereby enhance the educational value they gain from visiting. Other educational activities can be built around it in the longer-term, from conferencing to joint projects. At an institutional level, the project can be seen as a first step in exploring the extent to which the nature and of the museum itself can be reinvented. The museum's educational users are encouraged to reflect on the museum and its subject matter and to restructure and reinterpret it for easy public access. Potentially this could lead to establishing longer-term relationships between the museum and many of its users. It should also result in the creation of more, and different, perspectives than could ever be achieved by the staff of the alone. Clearly this raises significant issues of institutional authority.