STEM learning and transfer in a children’s museum and beyond

Maria Marcus*, Catherine A. Haden, David H. Uttal

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


This study addressed whether providing mothers and children with engineering information would promote science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) talk during interactions in a building-construction exhibit and later when remembering the experience at home. A total of 40 mothers and their 5-to 6-year-old children (M = 5.87) were randomly assigned to one of two groups that either did or did not receive specific information about a simple engineering principle prior to building at the museum. A subset of the dyads (N = 21) also recorded memory conversations at home at two delay intervals. The engineering information supported transfer of learning from the demonstration to building in the exhibit, as well as to memory reports at least 2 weeks afterwards. Implications for museum-based research and practice are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)155-180
Number of pages26
JournalMerrill-Palmer Quarterly
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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