Evaluation of Music And Astronomy Under The Stars: Bringing Science To New Audiences At Music Events
Evaluations were conducted of the 2009–2012 NASA-funded Music and Astronomy Under the Stars (MAUS) program at outdoor concerts (see the separate MAUS poster at this meeting). MAUS promoted lifelong learning by providing opportunities for the public to look through telescopes, participate in hands-on activities, and view posters, banners, and videos at events where large numbers of people are gathered. Surveys were given to 1.6% of the concertgoers at MAUS events with the participants expressing their level of agreement on a four-point scale with the following statements: “The astronomy at this event has been an enjoyable experience;” “It has been easy to comprehend the astronomy at this event;” “This event has helped me learn new things about astronomy;” “This event has made me want to learn more about astronomy;” and “This event has increased my interest in science.” On a scale where 1 = strongly disagree, 2 = disagree, 3 = agree, and 4 = strongly agree, MAUS received high ratings (>3.34/4) on all outcomes. MAUS successfully reached people at different concerts who had little interest in science. MAUS appealed to concert attendees of both genders, all ages, multiple levels of education, and all musical tastes. MAUS positively
influenced the public’s knowledge of and interest in astronomy. The high ratings from virtually all respondents indicate that the gains were not restricted to science enthusiasts.
The data strongly supports the conclusion that MAUS—bringing astronomy to
people at musical events—is effective!