Chinese Family Groups' Museum Visit Motivations: A Comparative Study of Beijing and Vancouver


  • Jiao Ji,

  • David Anderson,

  • Xinchun Wu,

  • Changyun Kang


This comparative study explored Chinese family groups' dominant visit motivations in science museums and aquariums in order to understand the perceptions of these audiences, who are an under-represented cultural demographic in the literature. In this study, 503 Chinese participants—131 in the China Science and Technology Museum, Beijing; 127 in the Beijing Aquarium, Beijing; 136 in Science World British Columbia, Vancouver; and 109 in the Vancouver Aquarium, Vancouver—completed a Family Group Visit Motivation Questionnaire. The results report four dominant visit motivations for these Chinese family groups. Significant differences in a fifth motivation, social interaction, were detected in comparing the Beijing and Vancouver Chinese family samples. Also, Chinese family groups were more likely to perceive science museums to be settings that can satisfy their educational and personal interest needs, compared to aquariums. This study provides insights for science museums and aquarium practitioners to better understand this audience demographic.