NAEA-AAMD Research Study: Impact of Art Museum Programs on K–12 Students

Museum Education Division


The National Art Education Association (NAEA) Museum Education Division and its partner, the Association of Art Museum Directors (AAMD), have completed a large-scale impact study investigating the question:

What are the benefits of facilitated single-visit art museum programs, guided by inquiry-based pedagogies, for students in Grades 4–6?

This study builds on, and significantly amplifies, the limited prior research that existed about the impact of art museum programs on participants. The goal has been to explore, on 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 findings of this study are now available.

This project was made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services MG-10-15-0079-15 and the Samuel H. Kress Foundation.

Read the Press Release



Summary Report and Discussion

Technical Report



A web-based Study User Guide is available for education and museum communities to share the value of and promote facilitated single-visit art museum programs, and apply the research results within their practice.


Study findings were presented at the Impact of Art Museum Programs on Students Research Initiative Symposium on Saturday, October 13, 2018 at the Detroit Institute of Arts. Watch the recording of the live event below:

Please note: “View from the Director’s Office: Panel Discussion on Study Findings and Implications” begins at 1:22:00.



Press Release

Human Restoration Project Podcast S2: E25: “Inspiring Awe and Creativity through Art Museums and Education w/ Emily Holtrop”

RK&A blog post on the study

Emily Holtrop’s Americans for the Arts blog on the project

US Dept of Education blog regarding the AAMD exhibition of student artwork includes a link to the study

Taking a Museum Education Study from Research to Practice,” AAM blog post on the study



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