Cultivating a meaningful experience : art education for adults with disabilities at a community-based art center

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Cultivating a meaningful experience : art education for adults with disabilities at a community-based art center

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Title: Cultivating a meaningful experience : art education for adults with disabilities at a community-based art center
Author: Schulz, Danielle Alexandra
Abstract: The purpose of this study was to investigate instructional components that foster meaningful learning for adults with disabilities in a community-based art center. Through narrative analysis and case study methodology, the researcher examined the programmatic content of a single community-based art center--the Arc of the Arts Studio and Gallery (AOA) in Austin, Texas--from 2009 to 2011. Utilizing authentic instruction and constructivism as educational frameworks (Anderson & Milbrandt, 2005; Newmann & Wehlage, 1993), the investigator proposed instructional changes to the AOA program that encouraged student-centered learning through discipline-based inquiry, maintaining real-world connections, and the active construction of knowledge. The researcher instituted a structured, arts-based curriculum based upon these educational concepts that infused lessons with illustrative materials, sequential learning, and public promotion of participants' finished art products in order to stimulate creativity and meaningful learning within the art center. This study scrutinized historical literature documenting art and general education for the disability community in order to examine the influence each historical orientation to disability had on art instruction for this population. Coupled with analysis of the programmatic structure of similar art centers around the country, this information facilitated a more full and rich understanding of how and why art education for people with disabilities is currently organized. The process of creating and implementing a structured art curriculum into the AOA studio addressed the ways in which meaningful learning may take place for adults with disabilities at community-based locations, and emphasized the need for further research into the quality, experience, and location of art education for the wide spectrum of people with disabilities.
Department: Art Education
Subject: Art education Disabilities Authentic instruction Constructivism Community-based art center Meaningful learning
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2152/ETD-UT-2012-05-5320
Date: 2012-05

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