First Impressions: Exploring the Structure of Titles for Nonformal Public Interpretive Programs
DOI: 10.1080/10645578.2014.945346
Title: First Impressions: Exploring the Structure of Titles for Nonformal Public Interpretive Programs
Journal Title: Visitor Studies
Volume: Volume 17
Issue: Issue 2
Publication Date: July 2014
Start Page: 177
End Page: 190
Published online: 25 Sep 2014
ISSN: 1064-5578
Affiliations:
a Clemson University, Clemson, South Carolina, USA
b Appalachian State University, Boone, North Carolina, USA
Abstract: Visitors considering attending an interpretive program open to the public at a zoo, historic site, park, or museum may have no more information available to them than the title of the program and its location and date. This research investigated how the Structure of a program title helped or hindered people from inferring the topic of the program, whether it is for adults or children, level of formality, and interestingness. Ninety-six college students at 2 universities rated 18 titles for interpretive programs on 4 dimensions. Interestingness of the program topic was related to reported intention to attend the program. Being able to infer whether the program was for adults or children and whether it was formal or informal was related to interestingness. Program titles should be strategically constructed as potential program participants make inferences about the program from the title.

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