How teachers and museum educators enact curriculum using contemporary art museums.

Kathryn Hendy-Ekers

    Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

    579 Downloads (Pure)


    Art museums have always been used by teachers as a supplementary resource to provide learning opportunities for students. However, learning experiences in art museums are often viewed as informal learning and removed from the teaching of the curriculum in the classroom. To investigate this problem, I researched literature on the links between learning in art museums, art museum education and audiences, including school-aged children, to determine if there was a significant gap between the experiences that art museums provided and how teachers used them in their design of learning activities in visual arts.
    Using the theoretical framework of Pierre Bourdieu (1977) and his work on ‘cultural production’ and ‘cultural capital’, I investigated how teachers used art museums in case studies of three art museums in Australia: including how art teachers used art museums to enact the Visual Arts curriculum and what collaborative work was conducted by visual arts teachers and art museum educators to develop learning experiences and resources for school students. Continuing to use Bourdieu’s theoretical framework, I analysed the findings of my research to propose a model for teachers and art museum educators to enact curriculum. The foundations of the model were supported by an investigation of the implementation of the Australian Curriculum across different states and territories across Australia. The proposed model unpacks the ways in which teachers and museum educators can facilitate discussion and responses to artworks that can be transformed into classroom activities.
    The findings of the research show that there is a gap in the provision of learning programs for schools in art museums, and that teachers are not using them as a resource to link to outcomes of the curriculum. Therefore, the model will provide a framework for teachers to work more closely with art museums to enact the curriculum and hence develop students’ knowledge and skills of visual arts.
    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
    Awarding Institution
    • Arts and Education
    • Charles Sturt University
    • Reid, Jo-Anne, Principal Supervisor
    • Mitchell, Donna, Co-Supervisor
    Place of PublicationAustralia
    Publication statusPublished - 2019

    Grant Number

    • visual arts education
    • curriculum
    • curriculum enactment
    • teacher practice
    • art museum education
    • visual arts teaching
    • contemporary art museums
    • contemporary art museum education
    • art museum audiences
    • student learning
    • art museum educators
    • Bourdieu
    • learning in art museums
    • art museum learning
    • schools and art museums
    • teachers and art museums
    • museum learning


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