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Three Survey Types

Visitors Count! offers three survey options:

  • Gate Visitor
  • Teacher
  • Spotlight

Check out the descriptions below and find the survey that is right for your institution. Participation in one of the three programs (some restrictions apply so be sure to read each survey description carefully) means you receive a one-time use of the Visitors Count! survey instrument, guidance from AASLH staff from start to finish, data entry, processing and analysis, a final report, and a one-day meeting.

AASLH always keeps your institution’s data confidential and preserves your results so when you decide to survey again (recommended every three to five years) you can compare the data to see if changes you made improved your position with visitors (or teachers).

Gate Visitor Survey

The Gate Visitor survey collects data and feedback from general visitors to museums, historic sites, historic houses, and related institutions. If you want to survey your spring and summer visitors, the registration deadline is in mid-February each year. To survey your summer and fall visitors the sign-up deadline is June 1. Of course, there is some flexibility with seasons particularly if your museum or site is located in an area where winter is a significant tourist season or you have other considerations you want to discuss with us. We are always happy to tailor your survey project so you can collect the most reliable and accurate data.

Once you register for Visitors Count!, AASLH works with you to create your survey instrument which is a combination of Visitors Count! questions and custom questions that focus on issues specific to your museum. We provide an online orientation session and program handbook along with personal service and guidance throughout the project. Once your survey instrument is ready, you distribute the questionnaires to people who visit your facility with the goal of collecting up to 100 completed surveys in each season (200 total). After data entry, processing and analysis by our partner agency, the Center for Nonprofit Management of Nashville, your final report is delivered electronically. An optional but highly recommended one-day meeting is held the following week in Nashville to help you understand your results, benchmarks, key drivers, and priorities for digging deeper. From start to finish, the process takes approximately 10 months.

The Teacher Survey

The Teacher survey collects data and feedback from teachers who bring their class to your facility for an onsite program. This program runs on the school year calendar. Sign up is each August. We work with you to create your survey instrument which is a combination of Visitors Count! questions and custom questions written to ask teachers about issues specific to your museum or site. We provide an online orientation session, program handbook and personal service and guidance throughout the project.

Once your survey instrument is ready, you distribute the questionnaire to teachers with the goal of collecting up to 100 completed surveys during the school year. There’s also a brief student survey; the goal is to collect up to 200 of them. After data entry, processing and analysis by staff at our partner agency, the Center for Nonprofit Management of Nashville, your final report is delivered electronically the following September. An optional but highly recommended one-day meeting is then held one day prior to the start of the AASLH Annual Meeting in whichever city is hosting the conference to help you understand your results, benchmarks, key drivers, and priorities for digging deeper. From start to finish, the process takes about 12 months.

Spotlight Surveys

Spotlight surveys offer organizations that have used the Gate Visitor survey in the past fifteen months the opportunity to take a closer look at their marketing, exhibitions, or programs. Spotlight surveys are an affordable and quick way to shine a light on one key area and collect valuable visitor data. We work with you to customize the two-page survey instrument. Upon your collection and shipment of 150 completed surveys, Visitors Count! will deliver your electronic report in 6-8 weeks. Sign up for Spotlight surveys is year round.