Theses Doctoral

"Making Do" or Making Progress? A Study of the Design and Arrangement of Eighteen K-12 Multi-Purpose Studio Art Classrooms

Allmond, Angela Sue

This study examined current conditions of existing multi-purpose studio art classrooms, or "dedicated spaces," in a cross section of America’s schools. To date, most of the research completed to assess the state of arts education programs in the last 20 years has been through government-conducted statistical analysis, detailing the number of part- and full-time certified arts teachers and the number of dedicated spaces in which arts programs are housed in each reporting school. The NAEA’s Design Standards for School Art Facilities served as the guideline for analyzing the physical design features and arrangement of the 18 classrooms included in the study. The work of Nel Noddings, Maxine Greene, and Parker Palmer provided framework for how the physical space influences human flourishing. The research utilized a multi-case study, and pursued two new methodologies: “Goldsworthy as methodology,” where Andy Goldsworthy’s inquiry-based creative practice in natural settings is transposed into the observation and analysis of art classroom design features; Design Thinking was used to understand the dynamic nuances that tie both physical features and human experience together. The findings suggest that a large number of spatial problems exist in the classrooms included in the study, that the current state of these art rooms are not indicative of spaces that are designed to support visual art learning and human flourishing, and offer insight into how to better facilitate the construction or rearrangement of studio art classrooms so that they are more intuitively suited to creative activity than they currently are.


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Arts and Humanities
Thesis Advisors
Burton, Judith M.
Ed.D., Teachers College, Columbia University
Published Here
July 19, 2019