These webpages are designed to help you plan your continuing professional development in visitor studies. They were created to facilitate life-long learning for all visitor studies professionals by providing suggestions for learning activities in five competencies.
In addition to the competencies, there is a self-assessment rubric, as well as a list or resources and a glossary. Recognizing that visitor studies is a diverse field and that much of continuing professional development is meshed with demanding professional and personal schedules, the suggestions incorporate a broad range of learning activities. Since individuals are attracted to the field of visitor studies from a variety of backgrounds, these guidelines are to aid in the identification of transferable skills and knowledge from previous experiences as well are areas that are considered specific to the field of visitor studies.
The Visitor Studies Association (VSA) currently offers resources, training, etc. designed to help professionals build skills. From the very outset, VSA has had professional development as a core value. And over the years VSA has observed interest in its programs increase; most specifically in the various professional development components (workshops and other forms of training) of the VSA annual meetings. With the support of a planning grant from the Informal Science Education Program of the National Science Foundation, VSA developed these guidelines for a self-study and professional development in visitor studies.
This project was supported in part by grant No. 04-43196 from the Informal Science Education Program of the National Science Foundation. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and contributors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.
A grant from the Noyce Foundation provided support for the web-based dissemination of the Evaluator Competencies for Professional Development.