Area of Engagement: The Arts (AR)

Requirement Purpose

The arts are a vital component of human existence. They provide an opportunity to experience and express the world in ways distinct from other disciplines. The Arts component of the General Education curriculum focuses on learning through participation in artistic creation. By taking a course that engages students in the act of creation, students will develop an understanding of art as a constructed means for communication, designed to reveal certain meanings and ideas or to elicit specific responses. Students are given the opportunity to develop their imaginations and to develop their ability to express themselves.

The general education program prepares students to become engaged citizens by exploring enduring questions about ourselves, civilization, and the world and by developing the skills necessary to shape and create a diverse and just community. As an organizing principle, citizenship encourages an emphasis on issues of personal integrity, moral responsibility and social justice. The arts have long been instrumental in the exploration and pursuit of engaged citizenship.

Required Course Characteristics

A course in this area will

  • require active participation in a medium of artistic expression
  • emphasize both the process and the product of artistic expression
  • provide students with the opportunity to explore deliberate conceptual ideas and intuitive discovery and their roles in artistic expression
  • provide students with opportunity to explore artistic expression through guided experience with the medium
  • require students to exhibit or present their work
  • require that students engage significantly in one or both of the following two modes of arts participation:
    • Inventive Arts Participation (engaging the mind, body and spirit in an act of artistic creation that is unique and idiosyncratic)
    • Interpretive Arts Participation (a creative act of self-expression that brings alive and adds value to pre-existing works of art, either individually or collaboratively)

Area of Engagement Learning Objectives

Through the completion of an AR course, students should be able to

  • express themselves through an artistic medium
  • demonstrate perceptual and aesthetic sensitivity
  • articulate an understanding of and appreciation for the creative process through artistic practice
  • employ the vocabulary and evaluative skills that enable students to reflect intelligently and think critically about one’s own and others’ artistic work(s)

AR Proposal Form