Arts Education Research and the Australian Context

Asst. Prof Robyn Gibson,
Dr Michael Anderson
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While many would argue for the richness and complexity of learning in the arts context, arts eductaors and researchers alike conclude that learning in the arts has value beyond the specific arts subjects thmselves. Studies such as Champions of Change (Fiske, 1999), Reviewing Education and the Arts Project (REAP) (Hetland & Winner, 2001), Critical Links (Deasy, 2002) and the recent Evaluation of School-based Arts Education Programmes in Australian Schools (ACER, 2004) have indicated that important cognitive and social processes and capabilities are developed in arts learning experiences. As a result, such research has raised the awareness of the potential for the arts to enhance learning both in the arts thmselves and across the curriculum. Moreover, the evidecne suggests that this is particularly poternt for those students who are at-risk, disengaged and/or underachieving. This paper highlights the paucity of arts education research in Australia and argues that there is an urgent need for substantial studies into the impact of arts education within the Australian context.

Keywords: Arts education research, Social and academic benefits, Australian context
Stream: Arts Agendas
Presentation Type: Paper Presentation in English
Paper: Filling the Void

Asst. Prof Robyn Gibson

Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Education & Social Work, The University of Sydney

Dr Michael Anderson

Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Education and Social Work, The University of Sydney

Dr. Michael Anderson works in the Faculty of Education and Social Work at the University of Sydney where he teaches and researches in drama education and Teaching and Learning. He has previously worked as a Creative Arts and a Secondary Teacher. In 2002 he completed his PhD that explored the professional development journeys of four art educators. His thesis Journeys in Teacher Professional Development won the American Association for Theatre Educators Distinguished Dissertation award in 2003. In 2003 Michael also received the NSW Minister for Education and The Australian College of Educators Quality Teaching Award. Michael has worked on evaluations for the federal and state government's and is currently working with the Australia Council advising on the "Backing Our Creativity Conference". In 2004 Michael Co-convened the Dialogues and Differences International Symposium which saw arts educators meet to discuss crossovers in research, advocacy and practice. Michael’s research interests include, drama and professional development and technology and arts education. He is currently working on several publications including a book on technology and drama education.

Ref: A06P0221