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What might count as art in schools?


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Broughton, L 1984 , 'What might count as art in schools?', Coursework Master thesis, University of Tasmania.

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Art as a school subject embraces a broad epistemological dornain. It
is quite acceptable for an art teacher to include in a single art
curriculum - in other words, to count as 'Art' - such diverse fields as
art history and ceramics, drawing and metal casting, paper-making and
basic design, furniture design and the making of videos, conceptual
art and weaving, book-binding and body art, computer graphics and
-wood-carving, clay modelling and photography, painting and
In the light of such a diverse range can it be reasonably asswned that
an art teacher teaches a single discipline? For one may deduce from
the forms listed that Art in schools may comprise not one fom of
knowledge, involving essentially one way of knowing, but that in fact
there may exist instead several forms of knowledge involved in the
subject called 'Art'. Is the art teacher therefore, not a teacher of
one subject but a teacher of many? And what are the possible
implications of the concept (and expectation) of diversity in school
Art curriculum for what a student may actually learn in, and through
the subject, including what he or she may learn about the nature and
purpose of art in society? Tb tackle these questions exclusively from the standpoint of art would
be to deny significant educational considerations, for the questions
are concerned not only with art but also with education. And
conversely, failing to explore struc~ural characteristics of art, conceding (for instance) that normative conditions in schools should
principally determine the content of art curriculum, would also be
patently inadequate, however prevalent such practice may sometimes be
in schools themselves.
The intent of this dissertation is to inquire into that apparent
morass of diverse knowledge in art - into the educational potential of
the various philosophies, ideologies, processes and techniques all of
which can, it seems, legitimately constitute the content of school art
curriculum. Behind this inquiry is a desire on the part of the writer
to simply resolve, if only for himself, a long-held problem: the
problem as to what should count as Art in schools.

Item Type: Thesis - Coursework Master
Authors/Creators:Broughton, L
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Copyright the Author-Master of Education

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