NASA@ My Library Virtual Programs NASA Scientists Evaluation Report
With funding from the NASA Science Activation program, the Space Science Institute (SSI) launched NASA@ My Library in 2016. The vision of NASA@ My Library was to help public libraries and state library agencies increase NASA and STEM learning opportunities for library patrons throughout the U.S., including those in geographic areas and populations currently underserved in STEM education. SSI worked closely with its partners, including the American Library Association (ALA), Cornerstones of Science (CoS), the Lunar and Planetary Institute (LPI), and the Pacific Science Center’s Portal to the Public Network (PoPNet).
Education Development Center (EDC) conducted the external evaluation of NASA@ My Library. This evaluation report describes findings regarding LPI’s efforts to offer virtual programs for library patrons featuring NASA scientists. LPI recruited and trained NASA-funded scientists and designed six programs, each featuring a NASA scientist speaking about their work as well as a related activity or demonstration for a librarian to lead. After a short application period open to all partner libraries, librarians participated in a training to help them prepare for their role in the programs. The 16 “Virtual Programs with NASA Scientists” were held between August and October 2020 at 15 different partner libraries.
To understand the implementation and impact of the Virtual Programs with NASA Scientists, EDC administered post-surveys to librarians, scientists, and patrons; interviewed a sample of librarians and patrons; asked patrons poll items during a sample of programs; observed a sample of programs; and gathered other data such as program attendance.