Teaching art: Art Education at Colorado State University

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A true education does not necessarily occur within the structured setting of a classroom, in fifty minute segments over the course of a semester.  Learning is about people-and lives are often transformed as the process of “understanding” evolves over time.  Whenever we speak of education, we are speaking of a person’s experience in the world (Grumet, 1975).

About Art Education

Our program embraces the artist-teacher concept which allows students to develop a strong studio practice while preparing to teach art at the K-12 level. The program is comprehensive, meaning students take coursework to prepare them to teach at the elementary and secondary school levels. Two degree options exist for students, a B.A. (Bachelor of Arts) in Art Education or a B.F.A. (Bachelor of Fine Arts) with an additional concentration in Art Education. The B.F.A. degree provides students with a stronger studio background and is chosen by many students. The Art Education program enjoys good working relationships with school districts in the state of Colorado. Art Education students are required to meet specific standards when officially applying to the program. This is usually done during the second semester of the sophomore year. The requirements for admission to the Teacher Education Program can be obtained from the Center for Educator Preparation (CEP)

Program Highlights

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Art Education Handbook

This handbook is made available to students and interested individuals who want to know specific information about the art education program. This material is updated at the beginning of each academic year. Contents of the handbook include: program highlights, detailed curricula and programs of study, application and testing requirements, scholarship information, as well as information about the art education facilities and faculty. The handbook is accessible here: 2018-19 Art Education Handbook

We are sure the art education program at Colorado State University will change your life. Most likely, you’ll experience a range of emotions about teaching and making art. Get ready for an exciting ride!

It’s time to think outside the box!

Some questions about teaching art:

  • How important are “beginnings” in an art learning experience; starts that are ambiguous can be frustrating. Is that okay? How do you provide meaning?
  • What is your role: teacher? facilitator? server?
  • How do you involve and consider all students in the art learning experience? What is the “role” of the student who observes, envisions, and reflects? Is this bad? How do you know if they are “doing something” with their time and contribution?
  • How do you let students fail? What is the role of frustration in the art learning experience? “Do-overs”? Reflection? Praxis (action precedes conception)?
  • How do you involve and consider all students? Do you “allow” groups or create groupings for students?
  • How do you recognize, support and teach to all learning styles? Honor multiple approaches? Differentiate?

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