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Trigger Warnings

posted by June 22, 2015

Trigger warnings was the topic addressed on a panel—organized by the National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC), the Modern Language Association (MLA), and CAA—that took place at the one hundredth anniversary conference of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) in Washington, DC, on Friday, June 12, 2015. Joan Bertin, executive director of NCAC, led a group of speakers that included Shaden Tageldin, professor of cultural studies at the University of Minnesota and chair of the MLA’s Women’s Committee, Anita Levy of AAUP, and DeWitt Godfrey, professor of art and art history at Colgate University and CAA president.

Faculty at several universities, including Wellesley College and the University of California, Santa Barbara, have adopted procedures to warn students, on syllabi, of disturbing topics that could trigger posttraumatic stress disorder or other strong reactions to subjects that will be presented in class. Students who may be affected are allowed to miss the class in which the identified work is discussed.

CAA and MLA prepared an informal survey in preparation for this panel and sent it to all members. Bertin summarized the results in her introduction. The survey found that less than 1 percent of the respondents’ institutions have adopted a policy on trigger warnings. However, 23 percent of faculty report that they have voluntarily provided warnings several times or regularly. Student-initiated efforts have instituted trigger warnings represent 7.5 percent. Fifteen percent of faculty indicated that students in their classes have requested warnings in the course they teach. Roughly 12 percent of respondents report that students have complained, either to the instructor or to administrators, about the failure to provide warnings. And 45 percent of respondents who have had first-hand experience with trigger warnings see it as a real threat to academic freedom. Many respondents added comments to the survey regarding their approaches, policies, concerns, and questions about trigger warnings. The panel will be reviewing them and preparing a document that summarizes them to assist other faculty in approaching this issue with their students and administrators.

Godfrey believes that trigger warnings are a form of self-censorship that induces doubt, fear, and intimidation in students as well as faculty. He called on faculty to reassert the humanities as a space of speculation and imagination at the center of human experience and to help students confront the unfamiliar in order to change it. “Art is where cultures and communities work things out,” Godfrey said, “where we come to terms with the unfamiliar and reexamine the familiar.” He sees a shift from the “politically correct” to “individual correctness,” where any one person’s trauma is, by definition, the greatest trauma. The individual now is asserting a right never to be offended or challenged intellectually. This shuts the door on exploration and discussion. There is also a chilling effect on faculty who are increasingly subject to administrative, student, and parental criticism and evaluation. Trigger warnings grew out of the feminist concern for the status of women on campus, but the result is that they find themselves in a place that can be identified as that of the political right. (CAA has published the text of Godfrey’s presentation.)

Tagilden indicated that trigger warnings grew out of the feminist concern for the status of women related to the trauma of rape, and that there should be a clear differentiation between mediated reality and reality in the classroom, so that students can move beyond their own limitations and find outlets and language to deal with traumas instead of normalizing victim appropriation. If students opt out of classes with difficult material, it automatically places the personal on a political plane.

What is the cause of this interest in protecting students from topics that may be difficult or traumatizing to address? Some in the audience saw it as coddling students for fear of criticism being levied on faculty. Some saw it as a question of race and class privilege. Students who have lived protected lives determine the need for treatment of all students. Others see it as a new generation of students isolated and unable to handle personal interaction as described in Sherry Turkle’s Alone Together.

The panel will be reviewing all the comments from respondents to the CAA/MLA survey to cull the most useful approaches that were recommended from the field to address the issue of trigger warnings. These recommendations will be posted by NCAC, CAA, and MLA in the near future.

Filed under: Education, Students, Teaching

Patricia Rubin is Judy and Michael Steinhardt Director of the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University.

In 2010, thanks to a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Institute of Fine Art at New York University inaugurated the Mellon Research Initiative. The initiative’s aim was to investigate trends in graduate education and advanced research in art history, archaeology, and conservation. That investigation took place at a time when those fields faced considerable challenges—financial, institutional, and conceptual. Cutbacks in funding from all sources and the concomitant or resulting instrumentalization of university education, which favors economic rationales for degree structures, department sizes, and disciplinary evaluation, presented explicit challenges to the humanistic as opposed to the “hard” sciences. They continue to do so.

The resulting publication, Pathways to the Future: Trends in Graduate Education, was introduced and discussed during three panels at CAA’s Annual Conference in February under the rubric of “Field/Work: Object and Site.” The Pathways report is the result of four years of consultation, undertaken through a series of workshops, conferences, and committees in which our fieldworkers—graduate students, professors, publishers, and university administrators, among others—were asked about the directions being taken in art history, archaeology, and conservation. These participants considered the resources those fields require to support graduate training and research; how those resources are most meaningfully allocated; and, crucially, how learning is best delivered in curriculum and training programs.

The public workshops and conferences (now available on the institute’s video archive) were accompanied by the work of three committees convened to pose relevant questions and investigate different aspects of our practices as researchers and educators. Unified in aim, the review committees largely operated independently. They shaped their work according to concerns and protocols specific to each field. The form of their reporting varies accordingly. All three committees considered both present conditions and future possibilities.

The examination of the state of our subjects found them to be generally robust. If anything they are stronger than ever before, existing as they do in today’s image-based environment and able to promote critical seeing along with critical thinking. They are inherently interdisciplinary and equally international or global in their inquiry and potential impact. They have direct relation to material understanding, in the recovery and safeguarding of our physical heritage, in interpreting its present condition, and in forecasting future manifestations.

Although based on wide consultation and meticulous deliberation, this report is intended to contribute to vital and ongoing conversations about the disciplines of art history, archaeology, and conservation, about their professional and intellectual situation, and about strengths, weaknesses, and strategies. Their thoughts on those matters are contained in this document, which is available on the institute’s website for downloading and circulating. The institute hopes this document generates discussion and stimulates further thoughts on the topics it raises and regarding training and research in art history, archaeology, and conservation.

The institute is profoundly grateful to the Mellon Foundation for its generous sponsorship, and to all those who participated in the initiative.

Teaching the History of Modern Design: The Canon and Beyond
NEH Summer Institute
Drexel University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
July 6–July 31, 2015

Teaching the History of Modern Design: The Canon and Beyond” is an exciting four-week NEH Summer Institute that will prepare twenty-five college faculty from diverse disciplinary backgrounds to meet the increasing demand for, as well as interest in, courses on modern design history. In-depth seminars will focus upon three interdependent thematic units: (1) taste and popular culture; (2) women as consumers and producers of design; and (3) political and global interpretations of design after World War II.

The director’s and visiting scholars’ complementary approaches to “The Canon and Beyond” will build upon and reinforce participants’ familiarity with standard material, while simultaneously introducing new material and critical perspectives. Field trips to regional museums and collections such as the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Hagley Museum in Delaware will provide participants direct experience with objects and suggest ways to use local collections in their own teaching. Group presentations by our participants will take place during the final week of the institute.

Application deadline: March 2, 2015

Notification date: March 30, 2015

Stipend: $3,300

Visiting scholars: Regina Lee Blaszczyk, University of Leeds, England; Maria Elena Buszek, University of Colorado, Denver; Catharine Rossi, Kingston University, England; Sarah Teasley, Royal College of Art, London; and Vladimir Kulic, Florida Atlantic University.

Project faculty: Carma R. Gorman, University of Texas at Austin

Institute director: David Raizman, Drexel University

CAA’s 2014 editions of Graduate Programs in the Visual Arts and Graduate Programs in Art History are comprehensive resources that feature updated information about 630 programs in 400 schools in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Europe, and beyond (see sample entries).

The directories provide prospective graduate students with the information they need to begin the application process. The directories are also key professional references for career-services representatives, department chairs, graduate and undergraduate advisors, librarians, professional-practices educators, and professors interested in helping emerging generations of artists and scholars find success.

Entries from the following program types are available: History of Art and Architecture; Studio Art and Design; Curatorial and Museum Studies; Arts Administration; Art Education; Library Science; Film Production; and Conservation and Historic Preservation.

New this year, CAA is offering PDF files of individual programs (updated in 2014) free of charge with the option of free customized PDF files, created on demand, based on the user’s preferred search criteria. Anyone can search the directories online by program type, faculty specialization, awarded degrees, country, region, state, availability of health insurance, and whether or not part-time students are admitted, or browse the directories by institution and download individual institutional records as PDF files. Search results include the program type, its location, and the program name and description, while the PDF file gives an in-depth profile of each program.

Print volumes offer several delivery options; e-books (as PDF or ePub files) can be downloaded twice and are compatible with your personal computer and most smart phones and ereaders (excluding Kindles). Please note that the individual, program-specific print volumes were last updated in 2013 and are available at a discounted rate.

Individuals can order through CAA’s website. If you are ordering for a school, institution, or department within a college or university, please download the order form and return the completed version with payment to Roberta Lawson, CAA office coordinator. We are unable to process Institutional orders online. Your order will be processed within three to five business days.

For more details, visit the CAA website. For questions about purchasing, please contact Roberta Lawson, CAA office coordinator, at 212-392-4404.

Call for Peer Reviewers

posted by April 16, 2014

2014 Arts in Education Model Development and Dissemination & Professional Development for Arts Educators

CALL FOR PEER REVIEWERS

The U.S. Department of Education, Office of Innovation and Improvement (OII), is seeking individuals to review grant applications for the FY 2014 Arts in Education Model Development and Dissemination (AEMDD) and Professional Development for Arts Educators (PDAE) grant competitions. The AEMDD program supports research and evaluation, sustainability, documentation and dissemination of innovative models that demonstrate effectiveness for student improvement and performance in the elementary and middle school curricula. The PDAE program supports the implementation of a high-quality model for professional development of educators and instructional staff working with kindergarten through 12 grade students (K-12) in high-poverty schools. Integration of art disciplines for both programs includes: music, dance, drama, media arts, visual arts, and folk arts.

WHO: We are seeking peer reviewers from various backgrounds and professions including:

  • Arts or Arts Education,
  • Elementary through High School Education,
  • College and University Educators
  • Professional Development,
  • Special Populations,
  • Research and Evaluation,
  • Curriculum Development,
  • Model Development,
  • Educational Partnerships,
  • Non-Profit Organizations, and
  • School Administration.

Peer reviewers may have expertise in various geographies, including urban, suburban, rural, and tribal communities.

REQUIRED AREAS OF EXPERTISE: The selected peer reviewers should have expertise in at least one of the following areas: professional and/or curriculum development, applied research and evaluation, arts based program management and design. Selected reviewers may choose to review applications for the AEMDD competition, the PDAE competition or both.

  • Professional and Curriculum Development: Experience designing, evaluating, or implementing effective lesson plans and methods to learning for K-12, that focuses on teaching strategies and student engagement inside and outside of the classroom
  • Experience integrating the arts into other core academic subjects
  • Experience developing model in-service professional development programs for arts educators and other instructional staff
  • Experience transferring or adapting projects/organizations to new settings
  • Fluency in reviewing organizational assessment tools for project effectiveness

Applied Research and Evaluation:

  • Extensive knowledge about current research findings in the What Works Clearinghouse (WWC) and comprehensive school reform  models, with knowledge of how to apply those strategies in a variety of settings
  • Knowledge of arts in education data sources and measures of program implementation and outcomes
  • Knowledge and experience in developing logic models
  • Expertise with experimental and quasi-experimental art based research designs
  • Understanding of and experience with proven research methods successful in integrating effective practices

Arts Program Management and Design:

  • Knowledge and understanding of effective operational and organizational/management infrastructures (e.g. people, processes, accountability structures, technology systems, program and grant management)
  • Knowledge of or experience with building effective partnerships in a variety of sectors (education, legislative, private sectors, etc.) and successfully engaging diverse groups of stakeholders
  • Experience using one or more of the following arts disciplines in program design: music, dance, drama, media arts, visual arts, and/or folk arts
  • Experience building capacity and financial sustainability in organizations
  • Experience developing policy to support adaptation of organizational change
  • Expertise in recognizing and developing effective arts models in program implementation, particularly those for underserved students in high-poverty communities
  • Experience reviewing grant applications

PEER REVIEWER EXPECTATIONS:

Application Review: Selected peer reviewers will independently read, score, and provide written comments for approximately 10 grant applications submitted to the U.S. Department of Education under the AEMDD and/or the PDAE grant programs.

Availability: Peer reviewers must generally be available for a 4 week time period and will work remotely and via teleconference. The peer review will devote time reading, scoring, developing comments, and discussing assigned applications. In addition, all reviewers will be required to participate in an online orientation webinar prior to reviewing applications.

AEMDD will require peer reviewers from May 12 until June 20, 2014.

PDAE will require peer reviewers from June 24 until July 31, 2014.

*These dates are estimates and will be confirmed upon peer reviewer selection*

Tools: Each reviewer must have access to the Internet, a phone, a computer, a printer and have the ability to access and navigate the G5 web-based system.

Quality of review: Each reviewer must provide detailed, objective, constructive, and timely written reviews for each assigned application. These reviews will be used to recommend applications for funding. They will also be shared with each applicant and the comments regarding winning applicants will be made available to the general public following the reviews.

Completion of review: Reviewers will receive an honorarium for the satisfactory completion of the above requirements during the grant review schedule.  A satisfactory review requires that each application is read, scored, and discussed.  The final, high-quality comments and corresponding scores will be reviewed and approved by a panel moderator prior to their final submission in the G5 system.

IF INTERESTED: If you would like to be considered as a peer reviewer, please click here and complete the Peer Reviewer Application Form. Even if you applied to be a peer reviewer for either the AEMDD and/or the PDAE grant competitions in the years prior, you must complete the Peer Reviewer Application Form. Please only submit one Peer Reviewer Application Form via the link provided above. Please also send your resume to the email address provided below no later than April 25, 2014.

Please do not exceed the three-page limit for resumes.

If you have any questions about the peer review process, please contact us by email: artspeerreviewcall@ed.gov

PROGRAM INFORMATION:

For more information about the AEMDD program, go to:

http://www2.ed.gov/programs/artsedmodel/index.html

For more information about the PDAE program, go to:

http://www2.ed.gov/programs/artsedprofdev/index.html

Filed under: Education, Service

While the College Art Association (CAA) continues to affirm that the Master of Fine Arts (MFA) is the terminal degree in visual arts and design practice, a growing number of PhD and other doctoral degree programs in the arts are being offered by institutions within the United States and abroad. Consistent with its commitment to offer guidance to its members, their institutions, and other professional arts organizations, CAA recognizes the need to develop a statement regarding terminal degree programs in the visual arts and design. In February 2013 CAA’s Professional Practices Committee (PPC) outlined a twenty-month course of action to develop a Statement on Terminal Degree Programs in the Visual Arts and Design. This process began with the formation of an ad hoc committee to lead the project.

The committee worked over the past year on collecting and comparing information about terminal degree programs and developing draft statements. The most recent draft was presented to members at the CAA Annual Conference in Chicago in February 2014. The session was extremely well attended and included an open discussion period and a mechanism for collecting post-conference feedback. In addition, the committee presented an earlier draft at the September 2013 National Council of Arts Administrators Annual Conference and many committee members attended an open hearing on the same subject at the October 2013 National Association of Schools of Art and Design Annual Meeting.

The committee continues its work on a timetable to submit a final draft statement for PPC review by June 1, 2014; for CAA staff and legal counsel review by September 1, 2014; and for CAA Board of Directors review in October 2014.

Please review the current draft statement. Members can offer responses, comments, and suggestions at feedback@collegeart.org until April 22, 2014. All submissions will be reviewed and considered. Please be aware that the committee will be unable to respond directly to members.

 

 

 

Linda Downs
Executive Director

New editions of CAA’s comprehensive directories of graduate programs in the arts are now available for purchase, featuring updated information about 630 schools in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Europe, and beyond.

Entries from the following eight program types are available: History of Art and Architecture; Studio Art and Design; Curatorial and Museum Studies; Arts Administration; Art Education; Library Science; Film Production; and Conservation and Historic Preservation.

The directories are currently available for purchase as customized PDFs, created on demand based on the customer’s preferred search criteria. Anyone can search the directories online by program type, faculty specialization, degrees awarded, country, region, state, availability of health insurance, and whether or not part-time students are admitted; you may also browse by institution. Search results include the program type, its location, and the program name and description, while the purchased PDF gives an in-depth profile of each program (see sample entries). Printed volumes and ebooks will be available for purchase in early November.

CAA’s directories provide prospective graduate students with the information they need for the application process and beyond. The publications are also key professional references for career-services representatives, department chairs, graduate and undergraduate advisors, librarians, professional-practices educators, and professors interested in helping emerging generations of artists and scholars find success.

For questions about purchasing, please contact Roberta Lawson at rlawson@collegeart.org or 212-392-4404.

Filed under: Books, Education, Publications, Students

The New York Center for Art and Media Studies (NYCAMS) offers a one-semester, sixteen-credit-hour undergraduate residency for visual artists, designers, and creative writers in New York. Our programs combine rigorous classroom study with internship and fieldwork experience, providing our students broad and competitive platforms for entering the arts professions. For eight years, NYCAMS has operated successfully as an off-campus program of Bethel University, serving over three hundred students from twenty-two partner institutions. However, current economic and enrollment challenges necessitate the search for a new host institution. NYCAMS is seeking administrative and fiscal oversight from a college or university with a vision for serving the next generation of young artists through interdisciplinary modes of instruction, collaborative models of learning, and dedicated professional mentorship. To learn more, please contact NYCAMS director John Silvis.

Filed under: Education

Directory for Diversity Practices

posted by January 24, 2013

CAA’s Committee on Diversity Practices would like to introduce the Directory for Diversity Practices and to invite CAA members to submit syllabi and recommend additional material for it. The Directory for Diversity Practices has been developed to provide a range of updated documents, texts, and links related to ethnicity, race, gender, sexuality, disability, and aging for use in the classroom. It is accessible via the CAA website under the tab marked Resources.

The directory is divided into five user-friendly sections:

The Committee on Diversity Practices is dedicated to building a useful and evolving resource for teaching the visual arts and art history. CAA encourages you to visit the site and to let the committee know how it can add to the directory in order for it to be more useful. The committee regards this directory as a work in process and seeks comments and submissions (emails below) from the CAA community at large.

Submissions Guide

Suggestions for any of the five areas are welcome and will be added as appropriate. Material included in its entirety must be in the public domain, contributed by the authors or copyright owners who have given permission to publish it on the CAA website, and/or otherwise publicly available. Contributions should be relevant, applicable, and up to date. Older material will be selected on its continuing relevance.

The committee welcomes the submission of syllabi addressing issues and topics related to diversity and art. It hopes to significantly expand this section, which promises to be a valuable resource for anyone seeking current models for inclusive curricula. Kindly send your syllabus as a Word file. Please remove any references to the specific details of the class (dates, name of institution, office hours and location, etc.). Professors retain the copyright for their work.

Please visit the directory and send your comments and contributions to both Zoya Kocur, Middlesex University, and Yasmin Ramirez, Hunter College, City University of New York.

CAA has updated its directories of graduate programs in the arts, revising current entries and adding new ones. CAA’s comprehensive guides—listing 650 programs across five countries—provide prospective graduate students with the information they need to begin the application process. Graduate Programs in Art History covers four program types: History of Art and Architecture, Arts Administration, Curatorial and Museum Studies, and Library Science. Graduate Programs in the Visual Arts presents program listings in Studio Art and Design, Art Education, Film Production, and Conservation and Historic Preservation.

Organized alphabetically by school name within each program type, entries describe curricula, class size, faculty and specializations, admission and degree requirements, library and studio facilities, opportunities for fellowships and assistantships, and the availability of health insurance. To get a better sense of the content, look at these sample entries.

Individual programs types can be purchased separately as ebook or print volumes. You can also purchase individual entries in two ways: search the directories by program type, faculty specialization, awarded degrees, country, region, state, availability of health insurance, and whether or not part-time students are admitted, or browse by institution name to download individual entries as PDF files.

The directories also serve as key professional references for career-services representatives, department chairs, graduate and undergraduate advisors, librarians, professional-practices educators, and professors interested in helping emerging generations of artists and scholars find success.

For more details and to order the directories, please contact Roberta Lawson at 212-392-4404.

Filed under: Education, Publications, Students