Features

In a recent post on this blog, Patricia Shaffer, PhD, the deputy director of the National Endowment for the Arts’ Office of Research & Analysis, upheld the need for more rigorous research in the field of arts education. Dr. Shaffer based her conclusions in part on a report released last year by...
An older man playing a guitar next to a woman singing
Music has always been seen as having healing properties—from ancient societies using music to unite communities and keep them healthy to singing as a way to soothe colicky babies. Much...
A new report from ArtsFund, Seattle’s local arts agency, hinges on a contradiction. A survey finds that just 28 percent of King County’s residents believe that arts and culture have the power to ignite social change. And yet, according to the report’s authors, analysis suggests that well over half...
Last month saw the peer-reviewed journal Early Childhood Research Quarterly publish a “special section” devoted to the arts . The section was co-edited by my colleague Melissa Menzer and Adam Winsler, a developmental psychologist who is also a principal investigator of the National Endowment for...
Cover of US Trends in Arts Attendance and Literary Reading: 2002-2017
Every segment of the economy, every branch of knowledge, and every field of human endeavor requires stories and statistics to help explain it to others and to itself. Storytelling is...
We’re talking arts attendance today with the release of our latest research publication, U.S. Trends in Arts Attendance and Literary Reading: 2002-2017 . This is a first look at results from the 2017 Survey of Public Participation in the Arts (SPPA) (except for poetry which we posted about here in...
As another school year begins, the National Endowment for the Arts’ research staff looks back on a summer that abounded with opportunities to learn about compelling research and evidence-based programs in the arts. Below, staff analysts Bonnie Nichols and Melissa Menzer each reflect on conferences...
A persistent shortcoming of research in the arts has been a scarcity of large, longitudinal studies that track representative groups of Americans as they engage not only with the arts, but with other life-changing events and behaviors. Even when such data are available, the studies often do not...
A growing body of research suggests that arts education can contribute to positive outcomes in childhood and youth development. We know, for instance, that training in classroom drama can strengthen verbal skills, while music training has been found to improve word decoding skills and may...
In recent months, I’ve come across various news articles and at least one press release declaring that social media has contributed greatly to poetry’s readership. Some of these sources even attribute to the technology a bump in 2017 poetry book sales. While it remains unknown how much of that...

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