Advocacy + Policy

NAEA Position Statement on the Value of Collaborative Research

[Adopted March 2015; Reviewed and Revised March 2018]

NAEA believes that knowledge gained through collaborative research strengthens teaching and learning in the visual arts in PreK to post-secondary classrooms, art museums, and community programs. Collaborative research encompasses a range of methods and approaches and can involve teams of PreK to 12 educators, museum educators, higher education faculty, artists, learners, administrators, community art educators, policy makers, partner organizations, and local stakeholders. Collaborations can involve making connections with other non-arts subject areas.

The complexity of issues* in visual arts education today requires frameworks for collaborative research that bring together the collective expertise and perspectives of researchers, practitioners, and other collaborators in addressing shared educational concerns and opportunities.

NAEA supports collaborative research that can result in effective educational change. Once an opportunity for informing teaching and learning practice has been identified in response to an issue or problem in visual arts education, a collaborative research plan will result in development and implementation and the outcomes are shared as a basis for future decisionmaking about practice and policy.

The NAEA Research Agenda provides an accessible means of identifying research topics and trends that can further understanding and heighten the impact of visual arts education programs in all settings.


*See NAEA Research Agenda agenda) for current issues in art education.

Buffington, Melanie L. and McKay, Sara Wilson, Editors. Practice Theory: Seeing the Power of Art Teacher Researchers, NAEA 2013.

Christianakis, Mary. Collaborative Research and Teacher Education, Issues in Teacher Education (Fall 2010) Volume 19, Number 2.

Coburn, Cynthia E. and Penuel, William R. Research–Practice Partnerships in Education: Outcomes, Dynamics, and Open Questions. Educational Researcher Volume 45, Issue 1. 2016.

David, Jane L. What Research Says About Collaborative Inquiry, Educational Leadership (December 2008/January 2009) Volume 66, Number 4 Inquiry.aspx

Dynarski, Mark. Researchers and Educators: Allies in Learning Educational Leadership (December 2008/January 2009) Volume 66, Number 4 Educators@-Allies-in-Learning.aspx

Miraglia, Kathy Marzilli and Smilan, Cathy, Edtors. Inquiry in Action: Paradigms, Methodologies, and Perspectives in Art Education Research, NAEA 2014.

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