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Interpretive Evaluation, Visitor Studies and Site Assessment Center

Interpretive Evaluation, Visitor Studies and
Interpretive Site Assessment Center

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As we continue to expand our services for the interpretive profession, our newest center will help begin our expanding interpretive outreach services. Our new center offers expertise and contract services in:

- Interpretation program, services and media evaluation.

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Interpretive panel critiquing - Slovenia Naitonal Parks (left) - evaluation of interpretive program and interpretive presentation techniques (US Army Corps of Engineers training course - center - interpretive trail media guidelines - right).

This includes critique and analysis of live interpretive programs, interpretive media such as panels and self-guiding materials, and total intepretie services program staffing and operational needs.

- Pre-post testing evaluation for interpretive exhibits.

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Exhibit pre and post testing evalluation (left and center) - interpretive exhibit pre-testing evaluation for the Cleveland Zoo - right photo.

This service is offered at the beginning of new exhibit projects evaluation of interpretive exhibit mock-ups such as the photos above, or a evaluation of existing interpretive exhibits that may be in need of updating and re-hab.

- Visitor studies and marketing research. Who are your visitors and market groups, what products, services and experience do they want?. What are their travel needs or challenges, wayfinding needs, expectations and more?

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JVA interpretive training course on developing visitor survey questionnaires and research for the Budapest World Heritage Site (including participants doing a visitor survey study to pre-test the questionnaire design).

- Developing interpretive marketing assessments, plans and marketing
implementation strategies.

We also have a on-line course on creating new site marketing brouchures. For what they cost - do they pay for themselves and then make a profet (i.e. bring in new visitors)?

- Heritage Tourism Development and feasibility analysis. If you build it - will they really come - when and how often? What are their willingness to pay for your interpretive experiences? Your overhead costs vs. revenue analysis. Real dollar and cents analysis for long term operational (and cash flow) success.

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- Feasibility analysis for site/facility expansions. Follows same approach as above.

- Cost/contact and cost/benefit analysis for interpretive/recreation programs,
activities, experiences and services.

Our new Secret Interpreter services for site interpretive assessments and

Can you find the "secret interpretive evaluator" in this pic?


Prof. John Veverka - Lead Interpretive Assessment & Research Consultant.

- B.S and M.S in Heritage Interpretation - The Ohio State University (Taught a course on Interpretive Master Planning - wrote the first Interpretive Planning Text book).

- Ph.D. program in Interpretation at Michigan State University. (Taught introduction and advanced interpretive courses including interpretive planning units.)

- Adjunct Professor Heritage Interpretation (summer heritage tourism institutes) North
Carolina State University, New York State University.

- NAI Certified Interpretive Planner and Trainer

- NAI Fellow

- Certified Professional Heritage Interpreter (Canada).

- Author of several interpretive planning/training college text books.

- Publisher of InterpNEWS - the International Heritage Interpretation e-Magazine
- 40 years of interpretive planning, training and interpretive research experience

- Associate Editor, The Journal of Interpretation Research (NAI).

- Senior Instructor, Kansas State University - Global Campus (Interpretive Planning).

Personal Research Focus - Visitor motivations and expectations for selecting and attending interpretive programs and experiences.

Secret Interpreter Program

Our new Secret Interpreter Program is sort of like a secret shopper program, and provides sites, agencies and organizations an opportunity to have a non-biased and professional assessment (and problem analysis) of their total site customer care, wayfinding and interpretive services operations.

We are pleased to offer our new "Secret Interpreter" critique and assessment program as part of our expansion for our on-site live interpretive training experiences.
How does the program work? This is a 3-day interpretive assessment event:

Day One - Meet with the agency/organization site director and senior staff to learn the main interpretive mission, objectives and concerns of the staff to be part of the site/program review. Develop a "issue" or concerns list to address as part of the on-site review.

Day Two - Site visit and critique from site entrance, welcome, orientation, view and observe visitor movements, attend live interpretive tours or programs, informally chat with education interpretive staff, docents, volunteers - to other on site services (food service, wayfinding, etc.). This assessment is done as a "secret visitor" just enjoying the site and programs as any visitor would.

Day Three - Meeting with site director and senior staff for a debriefing of the previous days site visit and assessment. What worked well, what needs improvements, and recommendations for changes and improvements with any live interpretive programs, tours or visitor contacts. This will be followed up with a written experience assessment.

* Option for follow up interpretive staff positive coaching and training is available.

Costs: Interpretive Assessment Program - 3 days as noted: $2,400.00 plus travel.

We are always flexible and can modify this service to match individual site objectives, missions and issues that would be part of the site assessment.

We currently also manage:

The Heritage Interpretation Training Center - offering 33 college level courses in interpretation.

- The Heritage Interpretation Resource Center - offering lots of free interpretive resource materials.

Our Heritage Interpretation Bookstore.

- Publishers of InterpNEWS - the International Heritage Interpretation e-Magazine. You can review the current and back issues at: One of our upcoming issue covers.

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If you would like to talk more about our evaluation and assessment services please feel free to get in touch.

John Veverka
HITC Director
President, JVA
Certified Professional Heritage Interpreter
Sr. Instructor, Kansas State University Global Campus (Interpretive Planning)

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