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A measure of goodness: art teacher identity as a measure of quality

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ABSTRACT This qualitative study examines how high school art teachers conceive of being a good art teacher. Motivated by my own experiences as an art teacher, I designed this study to add teachers' voices to the conversation surrounding quality in

ABSTRACT This qualitative study examines how high school art teachers conceive of being a good art teacher. Motivated by my own experiences as an art teacher, I designed this study to add teachers' voices to the conversation surrounding quality in education. My research design included a narrative strand and an arts-based strand. In the narrative strand, I interviewed and observed 12 high school art educators from a major city in the southwest. I conducted an autoethnographic reflection exploring my connection to the research topic and research process. In the arts-based strand I used fiber-arts to further understand my topic. I wrote this dissertation using a narrative approach, blending the traditional research format, voices of participants, and my autoethnographic reflection. I included the results of my arts-based approach in the final chapter. Findings suggest that the teachers in this study conceptualize being a good art teacher as a process of identity construction. Each of the teachers understood what it meant to be a good art teacher in unique ways, connected to their personal experiences and backgrounds. As the teachers engaged in identity work to become the kind of art teacher they wanted to be, they engaged in a process of identity construction that consisted of four steps. I propose a model of identity construction in which the teachers chose teaching practices, evaluated those practices, identified challenges to their identities, and selected strategies to confirm, assert, or defend their desired identities. The findings have implications for teachers to become reflective practitioners; for teacher educators to prepare teachers to engage in reflective practices; and for administrators and policy makers to take into account the cyclical and personal nature of identity construction. This study also has implications for further research including the need to examine the dispositions of art teachers, teachers' evolving conceptions of what it means to be a good art teacher, and the effect labeling teachers' quality has on their identity construction.

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Date Created
2014

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A voluntary summer art course for at-risk students attending Job Corps: a qualitative study

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Many alternative schools for at-risk students do not offer art classes to their students. Phoenix Job Corps is one of those schools. I conducted a qualitative study about a voluntary summer art course at Phoenix Job Corps, a vocational school

Many alternative schools for at-risk students do not offer art classes to their students. Phoenix Job Corps is one of those schools. I conducted a qualitative study about a voluntary summer art course at Phoenix Job Corps, a vocational school for at-risk students. I had thirteen student volunteers, eight of them refugees from other countries. All the participants created a narrative painting about something in their lives. The purpose of this study was to examine this voluntary summer art course and to determine its usefulness as a beneficial tool to the lives of the students. This included looking at participants' narrative paintings to determine common themes or subjects, finding out their opinions on whether or not their school should offer an art course, their willingness to share their stories, determining whether they think it's important for others to see their work, and lastly concluding what artwork they like best and why. I found that the majority of students do want an art class offered at their schools, and all but one participant was more than willing to share their story about their narrative painting. Common themes amongst their paintings were family, a specific memory or event, or their present and future lives. I found similar subject matter in their paintings such as animals, houses or huts, and people. My research also unveiled a large difference in the refugee students' paintings as opposed to the other United States participants. The findings also suggest that participants judged other work based on meaning more so than aesthetics. This study explores, in detail, the narrative art and experiences of a very diverse group of students.

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Date Created
2012

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Reflective photographic practice: developing socially engaged student photographers

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This study examines the possibility of using social and historical contexts, image analysis, and personal themes to engage adolescent photography students in the craft of photography. This new curriculum was designed around large themes that correspond to the developmental

This study examines the possibility of using social and historical contexts, image analysis, and personal themes to engage adolescent photography students in the craft of photography. This new curriculum was designed around large themes that correspond to the developmental stage of adolescence. Issues such as self-identity, teenage stereotypes, school, family, and community were explored through examining historical documents and photographs, comparing popular culture perspectives, and learning basic semiotics. The students then worked within these ideas by creating their own photographs and reflecting upon their art making choices. The new approach was implemented in an analog film class in which basic 35mm camera and film techniques are taught. It is argued that meaning making motivates the adolescent photographer rather than the achievement of strong technical skills. This qualitative study was conducted using an action research approach, in which the author was both the classroom teacher and the researcher. The study incorporates data collected from student-created photographs, student written responses, interviews of students, interviews of photography teachers, and the researcher's field notes. Major themes were discovered over time by applying a grounded theory approach to understanding the data. The curriculum brought a new level of student engagement, both in participation in the course and in the complexity of their image making. By incorporating the chosen topics, students' images were rich with personal meaning. Students retained concepts of historical and social uses for photography and demonstrated a base understanding of semiotic theory. Furthermore, the data points to a stronger sense of community and teacher-student relationships within the classroom. The researcher argues that this deeper rapport is due to the concentration on personal themes within the practice of photography. Setbacks within the study included censorship by the school of mature subjects, a limited amount of equipment, and a limited amount of time with the students. This study demonstrates the need for art curriculum to provide connections between visual art, interdisciplinary associations, students' level of development, and students' personal interests. The research provides a possible approach to redesigning curriculum for photography courses for the twenty-first century student.

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Date Created
2011

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Effective motivational strategies employed by teachers of high school beginning-level art courses

Description

This study gathers the expertise of three reputable art teachers, through analysis of qualitative data collected during in-person interviews and classroom observations, as they share their experiences and insights regarding successful methods of motivating and engaging students in their beginning-level

This study gathers the expertise of three reputable art teachers, through analysis of qualitative data collected during in-person interviews and classroom observations, as they share their experiences and insights regarding successful methods of motivating and engaging students in their beginning-level art classes. Various works of literature regarding educational motivation are reviewed, and this study begins to address the need for additional research involving this issue, as it applies to teachers of art. Commonalities between the motivational tactics of the participating teachers are discussed, as well as comparison of findings to existing literature. This may be useful to art teachers who are new to the field or who are seeking information regarding successful methods of encouraging motivation and engagement in their beginning -level art classes.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
2012

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YouTube instruction on ceramic techniques in the middle school art classroom

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ABSTRACT Art educators use a variety of teaching and demonstration methods to convey information to students. With the emergence of digital technology, the standard methods of demonstration are changing. Art demonstrations are now being recorded and shared via the internet

ABSTRACT Art educators use a variety of teaching and demonstration methods to convey information to students. With the emergence of digital technology, the standard methods of demonstration are changing. Art demonstrations are now being recorded and shared via the internet through video sharing websites such as YouTube. Little research has been conducted on the effectiveness of video demonstration versus the standard teacher-centered demonstration. This study focused on two different demonstration methods for the same clay sculpture project, with two separate groups of students. The control group received regular teacher-centered demonstration for instruction. The experimental group received a series of YouTube videos for demonstration. Quantitative data include scores of clay sculptures using a four-point scale in three separate categories based on construction abilities. Qualitative data include responses to pre and post-questionnaires along with classroom observations. The data is analyzed to look at the difference, if any, between YouTube instruction and regular teacher-centered instruction on middle school students' ceramic construction abilities. Findings suggest that while the YouTube video method of demonstration appeared to have a slightly greater effect on student construction abilities. Although, both instruction methods proved to be beneficial.

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Date Created
2013

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Spontaneous wanderers in the digital metropolis: a case study of the new literacy practices of youth artists learning on a social media platform

Description

This qualitative case study of 12, eighteen to twenty-four-year-olds from seven countries provided insight into the learning practices on an art-centered, social media platform. The study addressed two guiding questions; (a) what art related skills, knowledge, and dispositions do community

This qualitative case study of 12, eighteen to twenty-four-year-olds from seven countries provided insight into the learning practices on an art-centered, social media platform. The study addressed two guiding questions; (a) what art related skills, knowledge, and dispositions do community members acquire using a social media platform? (b), What new literacy practices, e.g., the use of new technologies and an ethos of participation, collective intelligence, collaboration, dispersion of abundant resources, and sharing (Knobel & Lankshear, 2007), do members use in acquiring of art-related skills, concepts, knowledge, and dispositions? Data included interviews, online documents, artwork, screen capture of online content, threaded online discussions, and a questionnaire. Drawing on theory and research from both new literacies and art education, the study identified five practices related to learning in the visual arts: (a) practicing as professional artists; (b) engaging in discovery based search strategies for viewing and collecting member produced content; (c) learning by observational strategies; (d) giving constructive criticism and feedback; (e) making learning resources. The study presents suggestions for teachers interested in empowering instruction with new social media technologies.

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Agent

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Date Created
2012