A description and analysis of preconceptions about art and art education held by preservice elementary education students.
AuthorMyers, Sally Ann.
KeywordsArt -- Study and teaching (Elementary)
Interdisciplinary approach in education.
Committee ChairRhoades, Gary
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThis study is concerned with pre-existing beliefs or preconceptions teacher candidates bring to their methods classes. It specifically addresses students in art education methods classes at a middle sized midwestern university and the population of generalist teachers the classes serve. The research question is particularly important because of the emergence of a new theory for delivering art education, discipline-based art education (DBAE) (Greer, 1984), that has challenged the existing art education paradigm. The study draws heavily on curriculum enactment research (Doyle, 1978). Through interviews with two groups of students, one entering and one exiting the teacher education program, the research seeks to identify and analyze the persistence of students' preconceptions about art and art education. The study's analytical framework is drawn from two bodies of research: (1) science and math studies concerning preconceptions held by students about subject matter; and, (2) studies of teachers and teacher candidates regarding the effect of their implicit beliefs on instructional choice and activities. The study finds that students have various preconceptions. Students believe that art is significantly different from other subjects. Instruction and evaluation are not deemed appropriate. Students believe that providing instruction or setting limits in an art activity is likely to restrict their students' creativity, and that any evaluation is a threat to students' self satisfaction. Entering students believe that talent is a genetic trait and can be improved very little by instruction. A prevalent preconception about observing and analyzing art is that all explanations for an artwork are equally valid since only the artist knows the real meaning behind the work. Despite a curriculum that was designed to teach students a discipline-based approach to art education, a model that emphasized the value of instruction, analysis and evaluation, many of the students' perceptions persisted. Most surprisingly, and importantly, preconceptions concerning talent and training, and instruction persisted. Although students moved toward a DBAE paradigm in some of their beliefs, in most respects students' preconceptions remained unchanged by the art methods classes.
Degree ProgramHigher Education