Walking Whales and Singing Flies: An Evolution Exhibit and Assessment of Its Impact

Judy Diamond, E. Margaret Evans, Amy N. Spiegel

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

7 Scopus citations


This chapter describes Explore Evolution, an influential exhibit developed for university museums in Kansas, Michigan, Nebraska, Oklahoma and Texas with support from the National Science Foundation. Researchers intensively studied the exhibit's impacts on visitor reasoning about evolution, and they gained new insight into how exhibits can influence visitor understanding of complex ideas. The research uncovered a significant finding: a single visit to the Explore Evolution exhibit improved visitors' ability to explain evolutionary problems. This significant, if incremental, change was seen across the participants, regardless of age, differing religious beliefs or prior knowledge. Moreover, visitors realized that evolution occurred regardless of the nature of the organism. Explore Evolution's inclusion of diverse organisms helped visitors recognize that evolution occurs in all living things.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationEvolution Challenges
Subtitle of host publicationIntegrating Research and Practice in Teaching and Learning about Evolution
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9780199949557
ISBN (Print)9780199730421
StatePublished - Sep 20 2012


  • Diverse organisms
  • Exhibit
  • Explain evolution
  • Insight
  • University museum
  • Visitors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology


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