Examining Leisure Values in Latino Families and Implications for Informal Learning Organizations

Family at museum

October 26, 2010 - 12:00pm to 1:30pm

Harris School of Public Policy Studies
1155 E. 60th St.
Room 224

Cecilia Garibay, PhD, is principal of Garibay Group, a multicultural audience research and consulting firm. She has consulted for the National History Museum (Smithsonian), the Exploratorium in San Francisco, the Field Museum, and the Art Institute of Chicago, and is currently Co-PI of the NSF-funded project, Bilingual Exhibit Research Initiative, which is investigating the impact of bilingual labels on visitors.

The decision to participate in specific leisure pastimes, including informal learning activities, involves a number of factors that go beyond simply creating awareness about available leisure options. Recent research suggests that an individual's or group's values plays a significant role in the leisure choices they make. Identifying these values allow informal learning organizations to position their offerings based on what is important to Latino families. More importantly, understanding how leisure activities fulfill Latino audiences' agendas and meet their needs can serve as the basis for developing relevant programming and meaningful experiences that can truly engage Latinos. This session discusses research with Latino communities that is helping us better understand access to and participation in informal learning activities and ways in which this research can inform museum offerings and practices. Among the areas addressed are Latino communities' leisure values, conceptions of museums, and barriers to visitation and engagement. This session will encourage professionals to examine how they might apply findings in engaging their local communities and researchers to consider the values and orientations that affect more diverse participation in cultural activities.

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