The arts boost learning and achievement for students.

April 21, 2016


  • The collection of research described in Critical Links: Learning in the Arts and Student Academic and Social Development (2002) finds that learning in the arts may be uniquely able to boost learning and achievement for young children, students from economically disadvantaged circumstances, and students needing remedial instruction.
  • A book by the Arts Education Partnership, Third Space: When Learning Matters (2005), finds that schools with large populations of students in economic poverty–often places of frustration and failure for students and teachers alike–can be transformed into vibrant and successful centers of learning and community life when the arts are infused into their culture and curriculum.
  • Cognitive neuroscientists at seven major universities have found strong links between arts education and cognitive development (e.g. thinking, problem solving, concept understanding, information processing and overall intelligence.) According to the Dana Consortium study, Learning, Arts, and the Brain (2008) children motivated in the arts develop attention skills and memory retrieval that also apply to other subject areas.
  • The James Catterall book Doing Well and Doing Good by Doing Art: A 12- Year Longitudinal Study (2009) found that 8th graders from under-resourced environments who are highly involved in the arts have better grades, less likelihood of dropping out by grade 10, have more positive attitudes about school, and are more likely to go on to college.