518 – Assessment Task 1 – Analysis of two Curriculum Models

518 – Assessment Task 1






Discipline Based Art Education (DBAE)


Discipline Based Art Education (DBAE) is a model for art education, which was first developed in the 1980s and since then has been implemented into many art classrooms around the globe. DBAE consists of four art disciplines, which provide students a different perspective on viewing, understanding and valuing works of art. 


The first is Art Production, which is the discipline of the creative process of art making.  There are many factors of art production that can be taught by teachers and learnt by students, including, becoming familiar with a wide range of art materials, equipment and techniques; learning traditional ways of craftsmanship; developing the personal qualities needed for successful artistry, for example patience, persistence, and self-criticism; learning to express their ideas and feelings in visual form; learning about inspiring artists, their motivations, their lives and their contributions to society, etc. 


The second is discipline is Art Criticism. This discipline focuses on the description, analysis, perception, interpretation and evaluation of artworks.  An art critic judges artworks by asking questions about what the artwork made up of, what it means and what its worth or value is.  There is also two main settings for art criticism to appear, one is journalistic, in which reviews of artwork are placed in galleries, museums, newspapers, magazines, radio and television and are for the eyes of the general public; the second is scholarly which entails more in depth interpretive essays which are published in specialised, scholarly, professional forums, such as journals, magazines, seminars, and conferences.


The third is Art History, which involves the study of art making throughout history and the stylistic eras and movements that go with the times; the examination of works of art or artists who have been recognised in their field and are now valued in society and are being preserved so the future generations are able to experience them.


The fourth and final discipline is Aesthetics. Aesthetics helps students learn to evaluate the basis upon which to make informed judgements about art, appreciate the complexities of the art world.  Aesthetics allows teachers to question students on, what is art? What is meant when one says something is beautiful or ugly? And how do we and others support or justify our judgements about the value and significance of artworks?


The curricular structure for DBAE may slightly differ from one school to another, but the common characteristics of DBAE fall under the following categories:  Written Lessons which ensure each level of schooling is planned, which leads onto Sequential Organisation so that each year level the students of the DBAE curriculum model are learning something new and interesting each year, a way to remember this is that DBAE want students to have twelve years of art education, not one year of art education twelve times.  The next category is Works of Art, which involves show the students a wide range of artwork, by famous and local artists, as well as excursions to museums and galleries.  Finally Balanced Content, which means a balanced amount of time, devoted to each of the four art disciplines. 


For DBAE to succeed its mission for effective implementation would rely on the following requirements are met:  District-wide adoption, systematic, regular instruction, administrative support, art education expertise, evaluation of student performance and achievement, which reflects on teacher instruction, and community resources, such as art galleries and museums.  DBAE think that it’s not just up to one school, as they are always part of a larger context, therefore if all the above requirements are met then the DBAE believe that quality art education will proceed.



Teaching for Artistic Behaviour (TAB)


Teaching for Artistic Behaviour or TAB began in the United States of America.  It was adapted from the practices and action research of the Choice Based Theory curriculum model, which also began in America.  It was adapted because there are many varying of ways of offering choice in art education and TAB was created to serve the needs of more art teachers in a slightly alternative way to choice-based art education. TAB began at the Massachusetts College of Art (MassArt) when teachers discovered they had a similar view in the belief that the child is the artist.  With the support of MassArt, NAEA and The Education Alliance at Brown University, the Teaching for Artistic Behavior Partnership
(TAB) was formed in 2001 and incorporated in 2007.


TAB utilises the Centres Approach with involves having the classroom set up with many different and varied learning centres around the classroom. More commonly seen in primary school classrooms, these learning centres are fully equip with complete instructional information, menus, resources, materials and tools, almost like a mini art studio set up for a child to explore.  The child is free to move between these learning centres, utilising materials, tools and resources, as they require them for their very own art making.  The learning centres are arranged to supply students with everything they need for independent learning opportunities. 


TAB is made up of four core practices, the first being Personal context, which involves the students as artists who can make choices about what they want to do in the classroom.  They are free to respond to their own ideas and interests through art making, engaging in whatever subject matter and materials they wish to.  Students are self-motivated; their own beliefs drive the work they produce, and experimentation and mistakes are honoured.


The second practice is the Pedagogical context; this supports multiple modes of learning and teaching.  Multiple modes of teaching include, direct, indirect, whole group demonstrations, small group instruction and one-on-one.  The multiple ways of learning include, peer coaches, self initiated groups and sharing work with a group or the whole class.


The third is Classroom context, in which students construct meaning during the making and are motivated to try new things.  The classroom set up relies on a few conditions, such as, arrangement of space, for example the classroom environment is attractive and inspiring, and is set up for both group and individual work.  Another condition is structuring time, which consists of whole group demonstrations, students can plan outside of class, and students work at their own pace.  The third condition is managing materials, for example materials must be highly organised so that the students can use them with freedom and ease. Also students can help the teacher find materials for them and their classmates to use and then they can take responsibility for looking after these materials and ensure they have a rightful place in the classroom.


Finally the fourth core practice is Assessment, which includes a wide range of assessment, feedback, rubrics, etc.  The rubrics are negotiated between students and teachers and are therefore broad enough to establish student differences. Another factor of assessment is self-assessment, which occur on a regular basis in a TAB classroom. There is also forms of collaborative assessment, which includes peer coaching, group sharing, curating exhibitions and conferencing with the teacher. 


For TAB to succeed its mission and visions are that they would like to expand public awareness of and provide schools with the freedom of choice in at making, by implementing the learning centres approach, into more classrooms around the globe.  They believe that this will in turn provide students of all ages with authentic art making opportunities.



Comparison of DBAE and TAB


This example of a teaching and learning activity can be used from Foundation right through to Year Ten, just with varying amounts of difficulty of course. The activity begins with a template (drawn by me), which is 12 inches by 18 inches; the students will trace this template onto their own piece of white drawing paper.  Then on the template first in pencil, the students come up with their own pattern and the only directions I give them is that the design should flow across all panels, whether it be realistic or abstract. After they have used the pencil to draw out their design, they will go over these lines in marker. Once that is complete they will colour the design in as desired.  The final step is cutting the template out and assembling the 3D shape, which in this case will be a cube. 

Here are photo examples:  



For DBAE before undertaking this activity students would have to research artists for inspiration.  Plus the design might target a specific artist or artistic style or movement, such as abstract expressionism or cubism, just to name a couple.  DBAE may have the table and chairs set up in a circular or square design, but students are not encouraged to walk around the classroom too much.  TAB on the other hand, would most likely not have just one option for the template, either many different shaped templates, or just let the student make their own template. TAB would not have any directions about the design and would let the students do whatever inspires them, from their own imagination.  TAB would also have the learning centres approach classroom set up, so students are allowed to move around the classroom freely and are able to use any materials they desire.


For assessment using these two models, if using the DBAE style you would most likely have a criteria sheet and a rubric, stating what the students need to achieve. For DBAE once the student has completed their piece of art the teacher would use the criteria sheet or rubric to judge the students performance on this task.  Assessment using the TAB curriculum model on the other hand, could be in the form of a rubric also, but the rubric would not have been just written by the teacher the student and teacher collaborate in making the rubric, so that they are broad enough to establish student differences.  The TAB model also uses a lot of self-assessment so students can evaluate themselves on how they think they are going and how they have improve as their school year progresses. 


DBAE and TAB are very different approaches to art teaching, there are similarities but there are many differences.  They are similar in the fact they both want to achieve students who aspire to achieve high levels of artistic achievement.  The differences include, DBAE having more constraints where TAB is about freedom.  DBAE wants a high level of artistic research before students conduct in art making, whereas TAB maintains that the student is the artist and they are free to complete whatever artistic endeavours they desire. 


I really enjoy both these curriculum models; there are pluses and minuses for both of them.  The criticism I would have for TAB is that maybe there is too much freedom; if the student is not adequate at thinking ‘outside the box’ then they may not come up with anything very artistic.  It’s all about the student’s initiative in relation to art practice and if they have a lousy initiative then they are not going to achieve anything. On that note I don’t think TAB would apply to classrooms of low socioeconomic or some cultural contemporary classrooms as these students may not have even seen artwork or gone to a gallery before, therefore the DBAE would be a better approach because the student will gain an understanding of artistic practice through research and excursions to galleries, museums, etc.  Having said all that I believe when I teach students art I will lean more to the DBAE approach, because it will be easier to control the classroom and when I was at school I loved researching artists for inspiration and the guidance I received from my art teachers was invaluable.






How to Plan ART LESSONS. (n.d.). How to Plan ART LESSONS. Retrieved March 30, 2014, from http://www.goshen.edu/art/ed/artlsn.html


SchoolArtsRoom | Art Education Blog for K-12 Art Teachers: Substitute Art Lessons. (n.d.). SchoolArtsRoom | Art Education Blog for K-12 Art Teachers: Substitute Art Lessons. Retrieved March 30, 2014, from http://www.schoolartsroom.com/2011/01/substitute-art-lessons.html


Teaching for Artistic Behavior. (n.d.). Teaching for Artistic Behavior. Retrieved March 25, 2014, from http://teachingforartisticbehavior.org/what-is-tab/


Teaching for Artistic Behavior. (n.d.). Teaching for Artistic Behavior. Retrieved March 25, 2014, from http://teachingforartisticbehavior.org/why-tab/mission-vision/


The DBAE Handbook. (n.d.). An Overview of Discipline-Based Art Education. Retrieved March 27, 2016, from http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED349253.pdf


What is Discipline-Based Art Education?. (n.d.). What is Discipline-Based Art Education?. Retrieved March 25, 2014, from http://www.buffaloschools.org/ArtEducation.cfm?subpage=160


NGV Visit – Evaluating Contemporary Art

NGV Excursion


Monday 10th March 2014


Evaluating Contemporary Art


Identify an artwork you have enjoyed looking at.


Artist name:  Slow Art Collective (Tony Adams, Chaco Kato, Dylan Martorell)




Date the work was created:  2013


Country:  Australia


Exhibition:  Melbourne Now Exhibition at NGV


The artwork is a:  Installation piece


How big is the artwork?  The size of a room, roughly 4m x 5m


These questions are designed to get the students to document the basic information about the work regarding the artist, sizing, the age and the location of the work so that they can not only begin to formulate understanding of the work but also so they have relevant information which they can take home and research further.


What is the scale of the artwork in relation to the human figure? How does it compare to anything around you?  This piece takes up a whole room, from the floor to the room, so is very large in relation to the human figure.  Unlike most artwork, which hang on the wall and ask that viewers ‘do no touch’ this piece engulfs the whole room and you are encouraged to touch.


This question is designed to get students to consider the scale of the piece and the effect it has on the viewer as a result.


Do you need to stand or move in a particular way to view the work? Are there constraints on the viewer or is there an element of interactivity?  To view this artwork you walk around and interact with it.  There is an area of the piece where you can actually take off your shoes and walk around the space and touch triangular shaped objects that make different noises when touched or hit.  There is also a kitchen full of utensils, which provokes interactions from viewers also.  When I went back to visit this piece a few young boys were playing in the area where the objects make sounds, and there was an even younger girl sweeping and making food in the kitchen!  It really was a piece, because of the immense amount of interactivity, people of all ages can enjoy. 


This question makes students realise that when art is in a gallery that it will almost inevitably always be viewed from multiple angles and that work may need to be curated accordingly. 


What materials or media have been utilised in the creation of this artwork?  Bamboo, cane, wood, rope, cable, wool, metal, found objects, lights, spices, herbs, dried fruit, oils, cooking utensils.


This question is makes students reflect on the medium in which their selected work has been created and what resources were used.


List the things you can see in the artwork?
 For examples, people, buildings, animals, shapes colours?
 What are they doing? Is there a story?  I can see a bed, a kitchen, a play space and more.  I feel like the story is about how these artists have built the inside of a house with found/reused objects, therefore I think the story is about sustainability, reusing and recycling and how we could utilise these ideas in our every day life.


This question makes students think about the meaning / message of the artwork and reflect on what they can visually see within the image when they pause and aesthetically and ideologically look at the work.


How have the art elements been applied in this artwork?  Colour, line, shape, space.


Have the art principles been applied to this artwork?  Composition, movement, pattern, unity.


These questions ask that the students now review the artwork aesthetically showing their knowledge of the elements and principles of design and how they can be used by an artist.


How is the overall mood or emotional intent of the artwork?  There is a lot going on in this piece, so much to look at, quite chaotic, but I think the mood is chaotic in a positive way!  It evokes a homely mood, it is chaotic yet comfortable, in the way a home might be.


How does it make you feel? What has the artist done to make the viewer feel like this?  This artwork makes me feel really happy, especially seeing children playing in it, I couldn’t help but smile!  I felt very comfortable in the space, like I could spend hours there, just exploring and discovering more!  The use of soft natural light mixed with the touches of neon lights without makes it interesting to look around and comfortable to sit in.


These questions cause the students to reflect on the effect that the piece has on it’s viewers / audience.


Does this artwork refer or remind of any other artworks, art movements or artists?
 Does it remind you of anything else? What other artists or art movements might have inspired the artist?  This artwork definitely reminds me of the yarn bombing movement, in which groups cover areas of a town, suburb, etc. with wool.  Usually the wool is knitted around items, but the sheer amount of wool in this piece is what is a reminder of yarn bombing.  Slow Art Collective also say ‘the colours, smells and sounds of Asian cultures inspires us.’


Do some research about the artist to see what else you can learn about this art practice. Is it different to other work they have made the same? Try to describe the difference.  The Slow Art Collective make work on the philosophy of ‘Slow Art Movement’ which involves connections to people and place.  The Slow Art Collection produce many installation artwork and they even have workshops which visitors can make there own sustainable, DIY environment.


These questions cause for the students to further research their artist and other artists that may fall within the same genre. Teaching students that whilst your art can be 100% original it is also okay to draw inspiration from others.


What issues, ideas or themes do you think the artist might be trying to raise in the artwork?  Slow Art Collective are exploring themes surrounding ethics related to production and consumption, sustainability, DIY culture, the environment and collaborative artistic practices.


What might the artist’s point of view be?  Sustainability and awareness of our environment and DIY culture.


What makes you think about that?  Because of all the reused and recycled materials.


Do you have an opinion about it?  I love this work, I think it’s amazing!  When I went back and visited and saw and recorded the kids playing in it, I just thought about if I was a kid I would love to play in it!  I feel like that is another thing Slow Art Collective is getting us to do, people of all ages, giving us the ability to play.


These questions asks students to demonstrate how a viewer can see a variety of themes within the one piece, this gives them the opportunity to reflect on how people may view their own works as well as how they themselves view their own work.


‘Selfie’ with the piece: Image