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Museum Education

2016 Museum Education Division Preconference: Designing for Transparency
Join us on March 16, 2016 from 8:30-5:30 for our annual Museum Education Division Preconference, at the Art Institute of Chicago and Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago. Click here for program description.

Learn About the NAEA Museum Education Division
Read about the NAEA Museum Education Division and find out how you can contribute.
• See this introduction to find out about its structure, leadership, goals, activities, and how you can contribute. 
Want to get more involved? Complete this form to let us know you are interested! 

Staying Connected
The Museum Education Division has invaded social media. While many of us have an active social media presence and often get into great discussions via hashtag about issues surrounding museum education, the division did not have a social media presence. Well, that has changed.  Over the last couple of months, a committee of division members, led by the Cleveland Museum of Art’s Hajnal Eppley, has met on a regular basis to create a new social media presence for the division.
You can find us on the following platforms:
Facebook: NAEA Museum Education Division
The Facebook group is for conversation and deeper engagement between division members. In addition to links to articles and resources that may be of interest to members, the page also includes occasional discussion prompts or questions to initiate conversation. It also serves as the primary location to post photos from Division events, such as the Preconference.
Twitter: @NAEAMuseEd
Twitter is the place we share division news and information on a timely basis. We also use Twitter during key events (such as the Museum Education Preconference) to live-tweet and allow people to tune-in and participate remotely.
Google+: NAEA Museum Education Division
The Division’s Google+ page is the primary location for all information connected to our Peer2Peer Hangouts. If you are interested in participating in a hangout, head over to our Google+ page for more information.
YouTube: NAEA Museum Education Division
Did you miss a Peer2Peer Hangout? Do not worry; all hangouts are archived on both our Google+ page and on our YouTube channel.
Interested in submitting something to our social media platforms? Please fill out this form and the committee will review for submission.
Not on social media but interested in getting up to date information on the division?  Please sign up for the Museum Education Division Listserv; we will continue to send out major announcements and updates via this platform.
UPDATE: NAEA-AAMD Research Study Update: Impact of Art Museum Programs on K–12 Students
The NAEA Museum Education Division and its partner, the Association of Art Museum Directors, continue to make progress towards the planning and implementation of a large-scale impact study investigating the question, What are the benefits to students of engaging with original works of art within the context of object-based art museum programs that take place during the formal school day?  We hope to build on and significantly amplify the limited prior research that exists about the impact of art museum programs on participants. Our goal is to explore, at a large scale, how engaging directly with original works of art within the distinctive physical and social setting of art museums and through constructivist pedagogies, might lead to or heighten a range of student outcomes. The Samuel H. Kress Foundation has provided a generous grant award to support the planning year for this impact study, which began on August 1, 2014.
We have recently learned that NAEA Museum Education Division, collaborating with the Association of Art Museum Directors (AAMD), has received a prestigious National Leadership Grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).  This award will fund the implementation portion of this important research. We are excited to be working with Randi Korn & Associates over the next three years for this study.  We are currently in year one and are working towards finalizing and disseminating the literature review created during the planning year. We are also working on site selection for year two of the study. Stay tuned to the listserv and our social media platforms for up to date information.
Now released: Report on national survey of single-visit K-12 field trip practices in art museums
Read the Executive Summary
Read the Full Report

Read a full white paper [PDF] [Word] on the NAEA Museum Education Research Initiative and this study. Email comments of questions to or

NAEA Museum Education Peer to Peer (P2P) Initiative – Google Hangouts
NAEA members were inspired by the thought-provoking discussions that take place between colleagues at the NAEA National Convention, and wanted to continue the rich colleague-to-colleague conversations throughout the year—both in person and online. 

Launched in 2011, the P2P Initiative Task Force organizes opportunities for art museum education colleagues—regardless of your experience level, program area, or size of institution—to share ideas and reflect together online via Google+ Hangouts. All Peer to Peer Initiative activities are announced and archived on our Google+ Page

What is a Google Hangout?
It’s a chance to see and chat with colleagues online for free! It’s a little like an on-line video conference. We find it works best when 4 or 5 folks use video and audio to lead the discussion. An unlimited number of people can watch, listen, and type questions for everyone to see via the Q + A app.

Curious about future events? Add the NAEA Museum Education Division to your Google+ circles for updates and schedule of upcoming Hangouts! 

Wondering what a Hangout looks like?  All past Hangouts have been archived on our Google+ page

Connect Online
From October to May, join us for monthly interactive conversations via Google+ Hangouts on Air, organized by the Peer to Peer Working Group:
Juline Chevalier l Mari Robles (co-chairs)
2015-2016 Google Hangouts!
The Peer2Peer (P2P) initiative has a working group with more than ten members to continue the project of using the Google + Hangouts platform to share ideas in an informal and conversational format.
For the 2015-2016 academic year, Hangouts will happen on the second Wednesday of each month at 1 PM EST/10 AM PST.
To watch a Hangout live, find it on the NAEA Museum Education Division’s Google + page or check the schedule here. Hangouts are also archived on the G+ page and on YouTube.
This project is strengthened by your ideas and input, so we hope you add your voice to the conversation. Anyone is welcome to propose a topic, and we are also excited to try out new formats for presentations to go beyond “show and tell.”
Please contact Juline Chevalier with ideas for topics or formats.
2015 - 2016 Schedule
All Hangouts are on Wednesdays, 1 PM EST/ 10 AM PST

October 14 - Museum-School Partnerships
November 11 - Meet Viewfinder, the new on-line journal for museum education
December 9 - How do I get published? - A practical guide for Museum Educators to writing for and submitting to print and on-line publications
January 13 - Get Ready for the NAEA Museum Ed. Pre-Conference
February 10 - Diversity in the Museum Education Field
March 9 - University Art Museums
April 13 - Non-Campus Museums Working with Universities
May 11 - Leadership in Museum Education

Connect in Person
Looking for a way to network face to face? Meet up with colleagues and share ideas informally. At the 2014 NAEA Annual Convention, we organized a Happy Hour after the first day of conference sessions and over 75 members attended! Stay tuned for information on the 2015 NAEA National Convention in New Orleans, LA.

You may have already seen the recently-released NEA report on arts participation, "How a Nation Engages with Art: Highlights from the 2012 Survey of Public Participation in the Arts." This is the nation’s largest population survey of arts participation trends. The NEA has partnered with the United States Census Bureau six times since 1982 to conduct the SPPA. The 2012 survey asked a nationally representative sample of adults ages 18 and older if they had participated in five broad categories of arts activity in the past year: attending, reading, learning, making/sharing art, and consuming art via electronic media. The 2012 was broader than past years, including a greater number of questions and a broader sample of Americans.

You may download this document on the NEA's website.

The NEA has issued a related call for proposals to encourage researchers to mine the data of the survey. The deadline is coming up--November 5. Guidelines are available online.

The Educational Value of Field Trips. Need to make the case for a field trip to an art museum? Researchers from the University of Arkansas, in partnership with Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, have conducted the first large-scale randomized controlled trial demonstrating the benefits students receive from visiting an art museum. Because the researchers randomly determined which students could visit the museum during the first year of operation (the treatment group) and which students would have their tour deferred (the control group), the researchers are able to isolate the causal effects of visiting the museum.

The researchers examined nearly 11,000 students, roughly half of which had been selected "by lottery" to visit the museum. They found that students selected to visit the museum are able to recall school visit themes at very high rates, demonstrate stronger critical thinking skills, display higher tolerance, exhibit greater historical empathy, and develop a taste for art museums and cultural institutions. Moreover, the benefits are generally much larger for disadvantaged students (minority, low-income, rural schools).  Art and cultural institutions have important measurable effects on students, especially when those students are reliant on their schools to provide culturally enriching experiences.

In addition, the researchers conducted a second study looking at the effects of field trips to the Walton Arts Center, a performing arts theater.  The Walton Arts Center study looked at the cumulative effect of culturally enriching field trips through 7th grade.  It also examined whether field trips to see live performance would produce benefits similar to those from tours of an art museum.  They found a very similar pattern of results as those from the Crystal Bridges study.  They also found that these benefits compounded and endured over many years.

Art museums provide a wide array of web-based resources for K-12 teachers. These include lesson plans, timelines, searchable databases, image banks, video clips of artists and scholars speaking about works of art, access to behind the scenes images of exhibition installations, podcasts of lectures, interactive games, special teacher blogs, free subscriptions to e-resources, and much more.

Click here for a list of resources from forty-five art museums across the country, organized alphabetically by museum. Additional museum listings will be added periodically.

How NCLB has affected Museums and Galleries

Cultural Activities are Good for Your Health

2015 NAEA Museum Education Division Preconference – Follow Up
Thank you to everyone who joined us in New Orleans for the 29th Annual Preconference: Museum Educators-Leading Together. We had a great day at the New Orleans Museum of Art, The Ogden Museum of Southern Art, and The Contemporary Art Center. To follow up on our day, we have captured notes from a few of our sessions and created a Storify of the panel discussion. Also find here a list of those educators who attended the preconference. Listen to an audio recording of the Leading at All Levels - Museum Educators as Museum Directors Panel Discussion.

2011 Keynote from NAEA Museum Division Awards Luncheon, March 18, Seattle, WA
Art Museums and 21st Century Skills
Marsha L. Semmel, Deputy Director for Museums and Director for Strategic Partnerships, IMLS
Presentation Powerpoint 

Join the NAEA Museum Education Division Listserv
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Emily Holtrop
Museum Education
Division Director

Director of Learning and Interpretation
Cincinnati Art Museum