Nanoscale Informal Science Education Network

September 15th, 2010 - August 31st, 2015 | PROJECT

The Museum of Science, Boston (MOS) and its primary collaborators, the Science Museum of Minnesota (St. Paul, MN) and the Exploratorium (San Francisco, CA), are continuing and expanding the Nanoscale Informal Science Education Network (NISE Net), which has been in operation since 2005. NISE Net has established a national infrastructure of over one-hundred hands-on science centers and universities within seven regional hubs with the goal of fostering public awareness, engagement and understanding of nanoscale science and engineering (NSE). As part of this undertaking, NISE Net partners have: - created a nation-wide set of annual events called NanoDays; - developed dozens of interactive exhibits, media-based products, programs, and public forums based on NSE; - generated new knowledge about the design for learning about NSE, its applications, and societal implications; - produced a network that involves informal educators and researchers; and - developed a Web site for professionals,, that includes several resources for educators and researchers, including a catalog of educational products. During the next five years (2010 - 2014), NISE Net will continue to develop new educational products, deepen the involvement of current partnerships in nanoscale informal science education, and expand the number of partners overall to 300 organizations. The advisory committee, content steering committee, regional hubs, and other work groups will continue to develop collaborative relationships between museums and university-based NSE research centers, including Materials Research Science and Engineering Research Centers (MRSECs) and Nanoscale Science and Engineering Centers (NSECs). A Diversity, Equity, and Access group will actively support, foster, and encourage the NISE Net\'s efforts to reach diverse audiences with regard to geography, dis/ability, gender, race/ethnicity, language, and income. Four research studies will be conducted: Partnership and Network, Institutional Change, Learning Progressions, and Evidence-Based Decision Making.

Project Website(s)

(no project website provided)

Project Products

NISE net website
NISE Network: Overview of the NISE Network Evaluation
Review of NISE Network Evaluation Findings: Years 1-5
2014 Poster - Nanoscale Informal Science Education Network
2016 Poster - Nanoscale Informal Science Education Network (NISE Net)
Nanoscale Informal Science Education Network (NISE Net) presentation
NISE Network Regional Workshop: Second Round of Workshops Formative Evaluation
A Study of Communication in the Nanoscale Informal Science Education Network (Year 6)
NISE Network Research on How Visitors Find and Discuss Relevance in the Nano Exhibition
Science communication as political communication
2010 Delivery and Reach Study
Process Evaluation of the Diversity, Equity, and Access Working Group's Partnership Pilot Project
International Year of Light 2015
Intro to Nano-Reference Articles
Nanoscale Science in Informal Learning Experiences: NISE Network Content Ma
NISE Network General Overview Power Point Presentation
Online Brown-Bag: The International Year of Light 2015 - What's Nano about Light? (Recorded)
REU Science Communication Workshop Implementation Guide
Sharing Science Workshop and Practicum
Universal Design Guidelines: Programs
Why Join the NISE Network? Brochures & Factsheets for Partners
Program Development: A Guide to Creating Effective Learning Experiences for Public Audiences
Museum & Community Partnerships: Collaboration Guide for museums working with community youth-serving organizations
NISE Network Professional Impacts Summative Evaluation
Summative Study of the Nano Mini-exhibition
Summative Study of NanoDays 2014 Events
Public Reach Estimations for the NISE Network
How Can an Evaluation Advisory Committee Benefit a Project? The NISE Network Example (2017)
NISE Net Years 6‐10 Evaluation Summary
Evaluating the NISE Network: Reflections from the Evaluation Workgroup
Research on Organizational Change in a National Network of Informal Science Education Institutions

Team Members

Larry Bell, Principal Investigator, Museum of Science
Robert Semper, Co-Principal Investigator, Exploratorium
Paul Martin, Co-Principal Investigator, Science Museum of Minnesota
Christine Reich, Evaluator, Museum of Science
Marcie Benne, Evaluator, Oregon Museum of Science and Industry
Catherine McCarthy, Project Manager, Science Museum of Minnesota
Vrylena Olney, Project Manager, Museum of Science, Boston
Elizabeth Kollmann, Evaluator, Museum of Science, Boston
Brad Herring, Project Manager, Museum of Life and Science
Rae Ostman, Project Manager, Science Museum of Minnesota
Marjorie Bequette, Evaluator, Science Museum of Minnesota
Sarah Cohn, Evaluator, Science Museum of Minnesota
Steven Guberman, Evaluator, Science Museum of Minnesota
Ali Jackson, Author, Sciencenter
Carol Lynn Alpert, Contributor, Museum of Science, Boston


Funding Source: NSF
Funding Program: ISE/AISL
Award Number: 0940143
Funding Amount: 12741551


Audience: Educators | Teachers | General Public | Museum | ISE Professionals | Scientists
Discipline: General STEM | Materials science
Resource Type: Project Descriptions
Environment Type: Exhibitions | Museum and Science Center Exhibits | Museum and Science Center Programs | Professional Development | Conferences | Networks | Public Programs | Resource Centers and Networks