Impact of arts participation on children’s achievement: A systematic literature review

Divya Jindal-Snape (Lead / Corresponding author), Dan Davies, Rosalind Scott, Anna Robb, Christopher Murray, Christopher Harkins

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Abstract

This paper reports on a systematic literature review to examine the association between children and young people’s participation in arts activities and their academic achievement. The 24 studies that met our criteria for inclusion and weight of evidence (2004-16) had mixed findings. Whilst many of the research designs employed would not meet positivist criteria for rigour – such as sample size, statistical significance and causality – typically required by public bodies to justify expenditure, there are examples throughout the literature reviewed of academically-related benefits to participants, such as increased confidence, creativity or more positive attitude towards their studies. Overall, there appears to be some justification from the literature for public investment in high-quality, long-term arts education programmes for children and young people in schools and community settings, on the basis of its potential to enhance academic achievement. However, there may be more intrinsic benefits to arts participation than the instrumental, essentially economic justification of improved academic standards.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)59-70
Number of pages12
JournalThinking Skills and Creativity
Volume29
Early online date23 Jun 2018
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2018

Keywords

  • Achievement
  • Art
  • Community
  • Impact
  • Nursery
  • Participation
  • Primary school
  • Secondary school
  • Systematic literature review

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    Multiple and Multi-dimensional Transitions: Creative approaches and Voice (Keynote)

    Jindal-Snape, D., 24 Aug 2018.

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