Three Doctoral Programs in Art Education and the 1965 Penn State Seminar

Eunjung Chang
Francis Marion University, USA

Borim Song
East Carolina University, USA

Jaehan Bae
University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh, USA

Citation: Chang, E., Song, B., & Bae, J. (2019). Three Doctoral Programs in Art Education and the 1965 Penn State Seminar. Transdisciplinary Inquiry, Practice, and Possibilities in Art Education. University Park, PA: The Pennsylvania State University Libraries Open Publishing. DOI: 10.26209/arted50-17

This paper will study the history of Art Education doctoral programs of our own universities — Indiana University Bloomington, Teachers College Columbia University, and Florida State University — to analyze their program studies, pedagogies, curricula, and other instructions. It will discuss an overview of the graduate programs at the time of the 1965 Penn State Seminar and in what way the seminar has influenced the doctoral programs in three universities. Wygant (1993) claimed that the Seminar in Art Education for Research and Curriculum Development held at the Pennsylvania State University in 1965 was one of the most significant conferences to bring together artists, critics, historians, philosophers, and art educators in the field of art education. This seminar re-evaluated and re-defined the nature of art education curricula from psychologically grounded, child-centered practices, which dominated art education for several decades to teaching and learning to more systematic and theoretical inquiry as a part of the humanities and discipline-oriented art education (Clark, 1984; Efland, 1990). According to Manuel Barkan’s proposals for curriculum reform, art education should exist in the structures of three domains — the productive, historical, and critical — and the teaching should employ both problem-centered and discipline-centered strategies. Furthermore, activities and learning objectives of art education should be developed on the focus of life problems (Wygant, 1993). The influence of this seminar seemed clear on both the program studies and curriculum development of these particular doctoral programs since Guy Hubbard and Mary Rouse from Indiana University, Arthur Foshay from Teachers College, and Ivan Johnson from Florida State University had participated in the Seminar (Mattil, 1966).

Indiana University Bloomington and the 1965 Penn State Seminar

I was a student of Zimmerman at IU. As my mentor, advisor, and role model, she has greatly influenced my current teaching, research, mentorship, and leadership, as well as my philosophy of teaching and life. Significantly, doctoral student interests, dissertation topics, research methodologies, teaching pedagogies, mentorship, and leadership depend on their faculty interest, expertise, and style (Clark, Hubbard, & Zimmerman, 2001). Indiana University’s doctoral program in Art Education was established in 1963. During the early 1960s, a Doctoral of Education (Ed.D.) only offered in Elementary and Secondary Education were the only doctoral degrees available in Indiana University. Art education students could only receive a doctoral degree in Elementary or Secondary Education that placed some disadvantages. Not only did larger school districts want to hire subject matter specialists as supervisors, but also many studio art faculties or art historians had to prepare art teachers for public school teaching. Moreover, Indiana state government mandated that all Indiana teachers should eventually hold master’s degrees, and some students wanted to continue their studies seeking their doctoral degrees (Clark, et al, 2001).

Accordingly, Guy Hubbard from Stanford University with John King McFee as his mentor was appointed in the fall of 1962 to undertake the establishment of the Art Education program. By the late fall of 1963, IU Art Education program that was separated from existing elementary and secondary graduate programs was approved. A new graduate from Stanford University, Mary Rouse who also studied with McFee, joined to IU Art Education program. They brought with them the philosophy of June King McFee from their graduate studies (Clark, et al., 2001). Like that established by McFee at Stanford University, IU Art Education program focused on “applications of the social science to art education, including psychology of perception, creativity, and the significance of sociology and anthropology of the study of art” (Clark, et al., 2001, p. 146). “June King McFee’s cultural studies approach to research based on psychology and anthology, Asahel Woodruff’s focus on learning objectives, also were theoretical framework” that influenced IU doctoral study during the early years (Clark, et al., 2001, p. 146).

At that time, many doctoral programs focused on the philosophical model of Viktor Lowenfeld (1903–1960), based on his own scheme of human development and creative self-expression. Lowenfeld’s philosophy was dominant in the field of art education; his Creative and Mental Growth (1947) reissued through many editions (1952, 1957, 1964, 1970, 1975) and remained a popular art education textbook for several decades (Marche, 2002). In the 1963 NAEA convention in Kansas City, Rouse critiqued and challenged Victor Lowenfeld’s Haptic/Visual Theory. Neal (1990) wrote, “no one had dared to publically question the principles and philosophy of Lownfeld” (p.16).

Hubbard and Rouse attended the Penn State Seminar and were profoundly affected by their participation in this event. At Indiana University, they had begun developing a series of graded textbooks as early as 1963 that were systematic, content-based, and articulated between grades. They gained new realization of the series’ importance by their participation at the Penn State Seminar and intensified their development and field-testing of materials. (Clark, 1984, p. 227)

Hubbard and Rouse published the first Art: Meaning, Methods, and Media series of art education textbooks in 1973 for classroom teachers in grades 1-6. Linked to the commercial publishing house and supported by strong sales, these textbooks were extensively and successfully used (Marche, 2002) and considered as the first commercially available elementary art curriculum (Hurwitz & Day, 2001). The Art: Meaning, Methods, and Media series include “objective-defined learning activities and is based upon sequenced, articulated presentation of content across the grades” (Clark, 1984, p. 227). Each graded textbook includes 60 lessons for each grade, and the subject matter of art is organized into six categories of learning: (1) perceiving; (2) the language of art; (3) artists and their art; (4) criticizing and judging; (5) tool and materials; and (6) art production. Lampela (1994) signified that this textbook provided students of art with sequential art lessons with the historical, critical, and inter-disciplinary content designed to build a discipline-based art learning experience.

Hubbard and Rouse were strongly influenced by that of Manual Barkan with his emphasis on art disciplines as the core of the art education program (Clark, 1984). Mannal Barken outlined a curriculum structure that would be both problem-centered and discipline-centered with content and inquiry drawn from studio production, history, and criticism (Marche, 2002, Mattil, 1966). In other words, “criticism/production and criticism/history were to function through inquiry-based activities, organized around life problems and framed by behavioral objectives” (Marche, 2002, p. 26). He criticized, “what is done in college studies, where criticism rarely stand alone and is most often incorporated with production and history” (Barken, 1966, p. 246). Hubbard also authored Art in Action, a series of junior high art textbooks which resisted simplistic “how to do it” lesson plans and encouraged students to explore four basic disciplines: (1) creative expression; (2) aesthetic perception; (3) art heritage, and (4) aesthetic criticism. Efland (1987) stated that his Art in Action was an adopted text in 20 states. Consequently, Hubbard and Rouse’s attendance at the 1965 Penn State significantly influenced the nature of IU doctoral program and research. They emphasized the structure and sequence of art curricula and modeled for students’ comprehensive thinking that was required for responsible curriculum planning.

In addition, Gilbert Clark from Stanford University with Eliot Eisner as his mentor, joined the faculty after the sudden death of Mary Rouse in 1976, and Enid Zimmerman had been a faculty member since 1979. At that time, Gene Mittler and Lovano-Kerr were also IU faculty and doctoral advisors in Art Education until the 1980s (Clark, et al., 2001). Clark was one of the leading members of discipline based art education’s (DBAE) contributions. Clark and Zimmerman soon have been recognized for their record of research and publication in art talent development, community-based art education, and curriculum studies. They co-authored the textbook Art Design: Communicating Visually (1978) that was influenced by the Penn State Seminar’s art as a discipline, and they added aesthetician to the roles of art historian, artist, and art critic (personal communication, 2015). In 1982, Hubbard and Zimmerman co-authored the textbook Artstrands: A Program of Individualized Art Instruction and included “art lesson grouped in strands through hypertext organization” (Sable & Manifold, 2009, p.14). All of the textbooks mentioned here published by IU faculty members certainly foreshadowed DBAE initiatives understanding an approach to art education as different disciplines — art production, art history, art criticism, and aesthetics.

In the 1970s, IU School of Education established doctoral programs in several curricular areas that were obligated to have special requirements in common for all doctoral programs, and it did persuade the University to recognize Ph.D. degrees in curricular areas including art education (Clark, et al., 2001). At IU, the Ed.D. is an internal degree in the School of Education as a practitioner degree, whereas the Ph.D. is a university degree administered by the Graduate School to serve both future teaching faculty and future researchers. This change made doctoral students to complete several required courses both in research methodologies and general education. Neil (1991) mentioned, “the IU School of Education acknowledged that the research course in art education was comparable to the standard research course required for all education doctoral students in various departments” (p. 19). Hubbard and Rouse showed tremendous enthusiasm for her students and their research. This was evident in a statement by Rouse’s faculty report in 1971.

Students in my doctoral-level curriculum courses expressed a desire to continue working on ideas evolved in that course and so we set up a process where this could occur. They worked together throughout the year, culminating in a multimedia project presented twice at our National Convention in Dallas, in the spring. Dr. Hubbard and I drove station wagons full of these students down to the convention so they could make these presentations which were extremely well received (Neil, 1991, p.19).

Rouse said, “art educators were building a significant collection of research based on a grounded-well of psychological and education research” (p.19). As one of the top research universities in the field, all of the IU faculty have emphasized the importance of research in art education as a discipline, actively engaged in their own research, and helped their students to develop their interests in research.

Teachers College, Columbia University and the 1965 Penn State Seminar

This section introduces the history of the Program in Art and Art Education at Teachers College, Columbia University, New York City, and investigates how the 1965 Penn State Seminar in particular influenced the graduate program. I studied in the art education program, pursuing the EdD degree in 2000 through 2007. While I learned a lot from the current director of the program, Dr. Judith Burton, and other great faculty members at the graduate school, my advisor was Dr. Graeme Sullivan; my learning experiences with Dr. Sullivan influenced my current research and teaching to a great extent. I now realize that his influence is evident in my strategies to prepare my students for their own future teaching practices and career.

Teachers College, which has a long history and strong tradition, began with the great hope of becoming a place for democratic public education. At its origin in 1880, the college began as a neighborhood school for the children of laborers. Entitled the Kitchen Garden Association (and then renamed the Industrial Education Association later), the school was founded with an educational vision based on philanthropy and social work (Burton, 2001). Furthermore, its founders believed that “handwork and practical arts — the development of skill and taste — could equip unprivileged children to build a better life” (Burton, 2001, p. 10). Based on the success of the Kitchen Garden Association, the school became the New York College for the Training of Teachers in 1887, and was formally affiliated with Columbia University in 1897, when the university moved to the neighborhood of Morning Heights (Wygant, 1959).

Teachers College became a focal point for innovation in education. John Dewey (1859-1952), who is well known for developing the theory of instrumentalism, strongly influenced not only educational practices at Teachers College, but also educational philosophy in America; he taught at Columbia from 1904 to 1930. At Teachers College, Dewey offered courses on philosophy of education and, together with his wife, Alice, founded laboratory schools. Two influential figures who played important roles in creating the foundation for the Art and Art Education program were Arthur Wesley Dow and Edwin Ziegfeld. Working at Teachers College in 1904–1922, Dow established “the groundwork for a recognition of the intimate connection between art education and its role in shaping personal experience, and as preparation for professional careers” (Burton, 2001, p. 13). Teachers College focused on two areas of art education, providing courses in manual training and industrial arts as well as the fine arts tradition. The first doctorate gained at Teachers College involving the visual arts was a Ph.D. in Industrial Arts Education, awarded in 1914 and conferred by Columbia University. The first three Ph.D.s were awarded in Fine Arts and Fine Arts Education in 1935. Ziegfeld developed “a curriculum of studies which then, as now, intermingled and integrated studio work with courses concerned with child development and curriculum and method” (Burton, 2001, p. 18). He played an important role in developing a new doctoral degree and emphasized the importance of design in the education of artists and teachers.

The Program in Art and Art Education started offering two kinds of doctoral degrees: Ed.D. in Art Education and Ed.D. in College Teaching of Art (Ed.D.C.T.). Studio art played a critical role in the doctoral education program. A unique aspect of the Ed.D.C.T. degree was the role of studio art in the fulfillment of the degree’s requirements. Both degrees required a professional exhibition of artwork at the time of certification. Interestingly, Ed.D.C.T. students continued to work in studio art and were required to have a second exhibition near the completion of their doctoral programs.

When the Penn State Seminar in Art Education for Research and Curriculum Development took place in 1965, Arthur W. Foshay, Associate Dean for Research and Field Service at Teachers College, attended this event. We can see the outcomes of this historically important seminar in the practices adopted by the Program in Art and Art Education at Teachers College as follows. First, the Program in Art and Art Education strongly emphasized a humanistic approach to art education. Faculty within this program rigorously collaborated with members of other programs in the department of Arts and Humanities at Teachers College. In 1986–87, the Department of Art Education became the Department of the Arts in Education, to bring together programs in visual arts, performing arts, and literary arts. And, in 1995, the new Department of the Arts and Humanities incorporated the programs in Art and Art Education, Music and Music Education, Dance Education (discontinued in 2001), and Arts Administration. Since the time of Dow, the Program in Art and Art Education has been rooted in humanities education. In consequence, faculty members in other Arts and Humanities programs such as Maxine Greene (aesthetic education), Philip Phenix (philosophy), Jonas Soltis (philosophy), and Harry Passow (urban and gifted education) have greatly influenced the learning and research of art education doctoral students. Dr. Judith Burton came from Harvard University to be a director of the Program in Art and Art Education in the early 1990s, and her research is also strongly based on a humanistic approach to art education and children’s artistic development.

A second outcome of the Penn State Seminar that has been utilized at Teachers College is problem-centered learning. This approach has been well examined and practiced in the Teachers College doctoral program in art education. In addition to various courses about art and education, the Program in Art and Art Education has been offering a course in the form of a weekend conference that explores diverse cultures with the filter of critical theory.

Lastly, the Teachers College’s Art Education program has successfully served as a regional center for research and curriculum development, based on the suggestions for regional centers by Elliott Eisner (Wygant, 1993) with the support of Manuel Barkan (Henry, 2002). Dr. Burton co-founded the Center for Research in Arts Education at Teachers College in 1995 and, in 1996, founded the Heritage School, a comprehensive high school featuring the arts that is located in Harlem, New York City. In addition, the program has partnered with several mainstream museums in New York City, such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, the Guggenheim Museum, and the Whitney Museum of American Art.

Florida State University and the 1965 Penn State Seminar

How does the Penn State Seminar impact the establishment and development of the art education program foundations at Florida State University (FSU)? Looking at journal articles, I found that art education faculty at FSU made an effort to establish new courses as a response to the Seminar. The art education program at FSU is one of the oldest programs in the United States. “On July 1, 1965, the Board of Regents of the Florida State University system established a doctoral program in Art Education in the Department of Art Education, Florida State University” (“Art Education Doctoral Student Handbook,” n.d., p. 7). In keeping with the Penn State Seminar, an art or art education is a discipline in which students need to have models to learn from, i.e., professionals of the art world, such as artists, art critics, and art historians (Efland, 1984, 1987, 1990). Thus the main paradigms in the field of art education should be shifted from child-centered to discipline-oriented.

Marylou Kuhn (1923-1999) was a professor of art education at FSU from 1950 to 1989 and helped establish its doctoral program (Johnson, 1999). She earned her master’s degree from Teachers’ College at Columbia University in New York and received her doctoral degree from Ohio State University (OSU). Kuhn also was an editor of Studies in Art Education from 1973 to 1975. The Penn State Seminar in Art Education for Research and Curriculum Development took place from August 30-September 9, 1965. It is not very clear how much the Seminar influenced the FSU doctoral program because the FSU program was established on July 1, 1965, about three months earlier than the Seminar took place. However, Barkan, through his critical discourses (1955, 1966), had previously criticized the child-centered approach to teaching in art and the romantic side of teaching art. Therefore, assumptions can be made that Kuhn was influenced by Barkan’s discipline-centered notion of art teaching and his theoretical speculations on curriculum (Barkan, 1966), which are similar to information presented at the Seminar. This assumption can be also supported by Kuhn’s offering an introductory-level art criticism course in the 1970s at FSU called Communication through Art Content (Sevigny, 1987), which was a case for offering the course for pre-service art teachers.

Three compulsory doctoral seminar courses in the Art Education Department have been offered at FSU: “ARE 6937 Structure in Art Education: Philosophical Foundations, ARE 6937 Social Foundations, and ARE 6380 Teaching and Learning: Psychological Foundations” (“Art Education Doctoral Student Handbook,” n.d., p. 11). Kuhn (1980) introduced her conceptual framework of the advanced graduate course called Structure. Through her critical discourse on theory development in art education through research, Kuhn illustrates a “structure of art education” that shows “art education is multi-disciplinary and subject to divergent philosophical orientations” (Kuhn, 1980, p. 21). I think that the “comprehensive philosophical framework” that Kuhn developed and elaborated (Kuhn, 1980, p. 22) serve as foundations of the art education doctoral seminar courses at FSU. Therefore, the Penn State Seminar was greatly influential in establishing and developing the undergraduate and graduate program at FSU.

Sevigny (1987) states that “Florida State University can be identified as having one of the earliest carefully sequenced, knowledge-based curricula that also incorporates critical and aesthetic dimensions in the academic preparation of art teachers” (p. 104). In addition, the department of art education at FSU offers art methods course for elementary majors, “A. Ed. 303, Art in the Education of Children” that consists of “teaching in children in art criticism, art production, and art history” (quoted in Sevigny, 1987, p. 105). Clearly, the content of the art methods course mainly was influenced by the seminar.

My advisor was Tom Anderson, who was a director of Florida Institute for Arts Education at Florida State University from the late 1990s to the early 2000s. This institution was supported by the John Paul Getty Trust and advocates discipline-based art education (DBAE) and provides DBAE resources and teaching and learning workshops to local art teachers and classroom teachers. DBAE considers, as an extension of the Penn State Seminar model, that art or art education is a discipline in its own right (Lovano-Kerr, 1985). Jessie Lovano-Kerr was also a professor of art education at FSU; she received her Ph.D. from the University of Oregon. Before coming to FSU, Lovano-Kerr was a professor at Indiana University and she advocates the notions of the Seminar as art or art education as a discipline. A comprehensive view of visual art education has been advocated by both Lovano-Kerr and Dr. Anderson through a book (Anderson & Milbrandt, 2005). The authors define comprehensive art education (CAE) as the following:

An outgrowth and maturation of discipline-based art education. DBAE focuses on making art, art criticism, aesthetics and aesthetics inquiry and art history. CAE incorporates additional strategies and understanding. There are various forms of CAE, but all are discipline-centered. Art for life is one model of CAE. (Anderson & Milbrandt, 2005, p. 235)

Anderson and Milbrandt add visual culture, individual and social creativity, and new technologies to the four disciplines such as aesthetics, art criticism, art history, and art making. Anderson also developed his art criticism model (Anderson, 1988, 1993, 1995) that modified Feldman’s model (1970). I think that Anderson adopted a basic structure from Feldman’s model (1970), which is the gold standard of modernist methodology in art criticism and mainly deals with the elements and principles of design to interpret works of art. Feldman was Anderson’s graduate advisor at the University of Georgia. It is not surprising that art criticism is one of Anderson’s research interests. Anderson’s analytic model includes a contextual examination stage which deals with historical and cultural context of artworks and artists. In addition to aesthetics and art criticism, his areas of expertise include, among others, the social foundations of art and education; anthropology of art and multicultural concerns; and philosophy and contemporary theory related to art and education.

In conclusion, FSU’s art education undergraduate and graduate program was greatly influenced by the Penn State Seminar, which is common at other research universities in the United States. However, individual faculty brought the Penn State Seminar’s ideas and new goals of art education into the art education program at FSU. These individuals, such as Kuhn, Lovano-Kerr, and Anderson, made efforts to transplant new and innovative ideas and theories that they learned from their graduate schools, advisors, and former professors at Ohio State University, University of Oregon, and the University of Georgia. They influenced and learned from one another at FSU as their working periods overlapped.


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Eunjung Chang, Borim Song, and Jaehan Bae

Dr. EunJung Chang is Associate Professor of Art Education at Francis Marion University — Florence, SC. She holds her Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction from Indiana University, Bloomington. Her scholarly interests include museum education, service learning, teacher education, cross-cultural education, and integrated curriculum. Chang’s writings have been included in many peer-reviewed journals and published books in the U.S., Germany, England, and South Korea. She received NAEA’s South Carolina Higher Education Division: Educator of the Year (2014).

Borim Song is Associate Professor of Art Education at the School of Art and Design of East Carolina University, Greenville, NC. She holds her Ed.D. and Ed.M. from Teachers College, Columbia University in New York City. Her scholarly interests include digital art instruction, contemporary art in K-12 curriculum, cross-cultural movements, and engagement scholarship. Song’s writings on art, art education, and cultural studies appear in publications in both the U.S. and Korea.

Dr. Jaehan Bae is Associate Professor of Art Education at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh. He has taught art methods courses for elementary and art education majors and supervised pre-service art teachers since 2007. Jaehan earned his Ph.D. in art education at the Florida State University and was an elementary school teacher in Daegu, South Korea. Jaehan’s research interests include socially engaged art pedagogy and issues on art teacher education.