COSI - Center of Science and Industry

General information

City / Country: Columbus - Ohio / USA
Theme: Science & Technology
Languages: English
Platforms: Web
Web: accessibility Not specified - CSS 2.1 validated
Mission: "COSI provides an exciting and informative atmosphere for those of all ages to discover more about our environment, our accomplishments, our heritage, and ourselves. We motivate a desire toward a better understanding of science, industry, health, and history through involvement in exhibits, demonstrations, and a variety of educational activities and experiences" ( 
Outstanding features: Website strongly oriented to communicate and reinforce the pedagogic activity of the museum, related to science & technology.

Interactive map (static image with clickable areas).
After user clicks on the clickable areas, he is directed to pages with specific information.


Contains information about permanent exhibits:
- General info
GOOD PRACTICE Contains a basic html activity to practice and understand exhibit's contents and goals.
GOOD PRACTICE Contains links to external resources (additional information), so user can prepare his visit.
No online exhibitions.


Main online resources are related to exhibits' info and activities.

GOOD PRACTICE Videoconferencing
It connects students with scientists, doctors, and experts in diverse fields with a LIVE interactive two-way experience with a school or from COSI.
It contains an Online Reservation System.

Online activities

Educational activities are one of the strongest points of this site.
Activities are available at:

Visit > online activities Introduced as an extension of the educational experiences that the user can find at the museum.
Contains links to interactive activities (flash) specifically designed for the website.

Learn > classroom & online activities Contains a link to online activities, and a collection of html-based  worksheets that allow users to perform activities at home or at school.
WEAK POINT Not print-friendly version.

Visit planning

Contains general information about visit details: hours, directions and other.

Daily itineraries


Contains itineraries specially suggested for kids, according to their age range. 
User can click on an age range...  

... to obtain information about his suggested itinerary, the expected duration of the visit , and partial duration of each activity.

Clickable calendar
User can click on the calendar to get information about each day's activities.

Visit follow-up

All follow-up resources are related to 2.0 sharing tools. Available at

Online community

No restricted area only to registered users.


GOOD PRACTICE Contains links to all external 2.0 tools that support communities and resources created by the museum:
• Facebook
• Twitter
• YouTube
• Flickr
• WebShots
• WordPress (blog)
• Podcasts
• Ning



Mobile features

No features for mobile devices.

Searching & browsing

Conventional browsing behavior based on a main top menu, and a secondary menu on the page left side.

Simple search.
Not advanced search.
WEAK POINT Search tool design changes from home to secondary pages.

Site map
Site index (clickable hierarchical tree)


No RSS or similar subscription options.
Newsletter just available for members (

Online transactions

Form to join, renew or buy a membership

Donate to COSI

Buy gala tickets

This section gathers all site's transaction options: buy tickets, membership and donations. It also includes an access to the museum's shop.

Videoconferencing online reservation system
Users can make a reservation for  a videoconference session.
Secure server.
Only available to registered users.

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