Museum education is a specialized field devoted to developing and strengthening museums' role as public institutions. The purpose of museum education is to enhance the visitors ability to understand and appreciate museum collections. In a seminal report called Excellence and Equity published in 1992 by the American Association of Museums (now the American Alliance of Museums), the educational role of museums was identified as the core to museums' service to the public. According to the report, "...the public dimensions of museums leads them to perform the public service of education - a term that in its broadest sense includes exploration, study, observation, critical thinking, contemplation and dialogue." As museum education has developed as a field of study and interest in its own right, efforts have been made to record its history and to establish a research agenda to strengthen its position as a discipline in the wider work of museums.
Excellence in Practice: Museum Education Principles and Standards was developed by the Education Committee of the American Association of Museums to help guide and inform the practice of Museum Education. The Journal of Museum Education (JME) is a journal covering the theory, training and practice of the museum education field from the Museum Education Roundtable. Articles are written by museum, education, and research professionals. The Museum Education Monitor is a monthy email newsletter that tracks and records research and resources in museum education world wide.
- Excellence and Equity. American Association of Museums. 1992. ISBN 978-0-931201-14-1.
- Excellence in Practice: Museum Education Principles and Standards (PDF). EdCom, American Association of Museums.
- JME: The Journal of Museum Education. Museum Education Roundtable. ISSN 1059-8650.
- Museum Education Roundtable website.
- Castle, Chris. "Museum Education Monitor". Retrieved 29 February 2012.
Art Museum Teaching http://artmuseumteaching.com/
- Museum-Ed, an online organization devoted to meeting the needs of museum educators by providing tools and resources by and for the museum education community
- The Museum Education Roundtable, publisher of the Journal of Museum Education
- New York City Museum Educators Roundtable, a forum for museum education professionals to address issues of museum and educational interest, exchange and disseminate relevant information and to explore and implement cooperative programming opportunities through roundtable discussions, workshops, and an annual conference.
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