Marianna Adams provides evaluation, research, interpretive planning, and professional development services for museums, cultural organizations, and other informal learning environments. Her goal is to assist professionals in creating unique and life-enriching experiences for diverse audiences. She focuses on engaging the museum professional in the process of evaluative thinking, encouraging them to embed appropriate and manageable evaluation strategies into their programs. Her areas of evaluation and research expertise include assessing effectiveness of community partnerships, museum/school collaborations, and learning in interactive/participatory experiences. Prior to forming her consulting company in 2007, Audience Focus Inc., Dr. Adams was a Senior Researcher at the Institute for Learning Innovation from 1995-2007. In her career as an evaluator/researcher, she has managed over 100 projects in the U.S. and Canada. She regularly presents at national conferences, has published numerous articles and book chapters, and has presented internationally in Ottawa, Canada, Lisbon, Portugal, London, and Mexico City.
In the past she headed education departments at the Ringling Museum of Art, Sarasota, FL, and Museum of Art, Ft. Lauderdale, FL. She served as National Principal’s Initiative co-coordinator for the summer 1995 Teacher Institute at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. She taught public and private school K-12, high school literature and composition, middle and high school art, middle school social studies. As head of the visual arts subcommittee, she served on the National Arts Education Assessment Consensus Project from 1992-1994. Adams received her doctorate in education policy studies from the George Washington University. She has served as an adjunct professor for both the Museum Studies and Museum Education graduate programs at George Washington University. She is currently an adjunct professor for the Bank Street College of Education’s Museum Education graduate program and Oregon State University’s Free-Choice Science Education graduate program.