C21U Catalyst Workshop on Arts and Technology

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[edit] Overview

Center for the 21st century universities (C21U) at Georgia Tech is holding a series of catalyst workshops on innovative ideas and practices on higher education. The third workshop of this series is on Arts and Technology. The goal of this event is to discuss how to integrate arts into technology education.

This Wiki page is built to prepare participants for the workshop by providing background readings and encouraging pre-workshop discussion.
Everyone is welcome to edit any part of this Wiki, to add more readings/resources, to contribute discussion ideas, and to propose collaboration opportunities. Please feel free to either use your name (and leave an email address so that others can reach you!) or to be anonymous. 

[edit] Background Readings

1. A two-page introduction of why we are holding this workshop: read here

2. Jill Fantauzzacoffin and her colleagues work on an integrated art and engineering course at Georgia Tech: read here

Another project where they characterized work practices of artists and engineers: read here and here

3. Steve Jobs is known for merging art and technology. He believes that computer science is a liberal art.

Jobs' interviews with National Public Radio: read here

Jobs shared how a college class on calligraphy influenced the design of the first Macintosh computer in the first part of his commencement speech at Stanford: read here

4. Pixar is known for its successful animated movies and its philosophy on the importance of art and technology and how they should influence each other: Art challenges technology; technology inspires the art.

To read more about how Pixar combines art and technology to make magic happy, check out this article and this book.

5. Keith Sawyer's work on Arts and Creativity: here

6. An interesting workshop on education for innovation - Role of Arts and STEM education: read more

[edit] Recent News

1. NPR News: Fractions Curriculum Strikes Right Note in California. "A music-focused math program in the San Francisco Bay Area is showing significant results. Third Graders in San Bruno, Calif., who took two 30-minute music classes better understood gractions than those who did not follow the curriculum." (read more)

2. U.S. Department of Education: Arts Education Status Report (Executive Summary, Full Report)

3. MIT gets $1.5M to mix arts into science, tech (read more)

[edit] Workshop Discussion Summary

The workshop focused on answering questions related to arts and technology education. For example, what should technology-education focused universities do to embrace arts? What is the role of Arts in technology focused universities? What are the roles of technology and arts in general universities? We also spent some time on discussing the social and creative impacts of arts in our society, and the mutual benefits of arts and technology in general. This section is structured based on break-out group discussions.

[edit] Group 1

--- How to teach arts in technology curriculum? How can teaching arts improve technology learning?

1. Are there differences between skills of an engineer and an artist? Should we teach them in an integrated way?
2. What is the difference between arts and engineering education? Is the essence of engineering problem-solving oriented?
3. When should we start to put elements of arts into basic technology education? Is it too late to start from college? Should we start them in elementary school?
4. Teaching technology through art practice is a process that includes familiarization, innovation, and assessment of learning outcomes.
5. Are we using Arts to loosen up Engineering? Studio arts make better engineers.
6. Arts teach one how to be aware of context. If you play in an orchestra, you have to be aware of other instruments that are around you. Similarly, engineers need to pay attention to context. It does not make sense to deploy technology without a context.
7. Liberal arts teach people to enjoy the process instead of just the end product. It gets students to own the learning process.
8. The role of the arts can be an innovative pedagogy. You need emotional involvement with what you're doing in arts. This should be the same for learning technology.
9. There are three elements in both arts and technology education: knowledge transfer, skill development, and growth in thoughts.
10. How to assess integrated art and engineering? Can we do this by looking into the creative processes that both share?
11. Maybe by pushing in GT we can then influence what we're looking for from students in K-12.
12. The Woodruff Arts Center is the fourth largest arts center in the US. It is ready for initiatives that combine arts and technology education and it can provide infrastructures.
13. There is a need of combining arts and technology education from the job market. Healthcare providers are saying that they do not want narrowed medical doctors. They need doctors that are aware of social contexts.
14. What barriers exist in art education?
15. What should we teach artists about technology and how? How can engineering push art forward?
16. Virtual collaboration tools are readily available for drawing, graphing, explaining concepts, including technology concepts.
17. We need to introduce art classes for all majors.
18. How can we have more creative classes without ppt crowded with text?
19. How can we use technology to provide access to people as a leadership development tool?
20. Are we trying to create engineering artists or engineers who value and participate in work artists do? These sense like different goals that require different strategies.
21. How can we involve visual based thinking into learning?
22. What to do with an Arts and Technology degree?

[edit] Group 2

--- What are the social impacts of arts education? How can arts draw creativity?
1. What is art?
Visual, performing, graphics, new media;
Creative exercise, resulting in a presentation
Art is not illustration or embellishment, but shapes and forms that makes the idea happen.
2. Value of art to society
Empathy, Sense of community, Sense of self-worth, Appreciation, Reframe perspective, Critical analysis, Impact, Relationship to "object" of art, Life exposure
3. Normally, how does Tech or Tech University benefit society? Now add Arts.
4. Can we improve our social relevancy through the arts? Art is not a label but a process.
5. We not only need "just" better engineers or artists. We need new kinds of thinkers or doers who solve societal problems.
6. We need to address the lack of freedom in education. Why do we assume that the arts can do anything special? Are the key attributes of arts somewhat different?
7. In arts, we usually have group learning/action/critique, which means different expertise in objectivity. That's pluralism. Pluralism provides antidote to orthodoxy. This maybe one answer to how to break the rules smartly.
8. What is the value of education? Are we inspiring people to learn? Arts provide a different platform for self-learning. How do we convey necessary information?
9. Society is the driver to define who we need. Art focuses on public engagement
10. In general, arts provide a multi-dimensional process for action and learning through senses.
11. The creation of computers that can create and appreciate arts (paintings, stories, music), which in turn could enhance our own understanding of the nature of arts, and the cognitive process involved.
12. Technology can be used to understand and expand the human experiences that art creates.

[edit] Group 3

--- What are the mutual benefits of arts and technology education? What are the differences between the two? What are the risks when combining arts and technology education?
1. Renaissance did not care about the distinction between arts and engineering. 2. Are the boundaries between the two disciplines bluring?
3. In play, we fight the rigid. We can acknowledge the structure while also embrace the freedom to play.
4. Science is a pursuit of the way things are. Arts and humanities are to explore what it means. Are they sequential in our study? Can we design a curriculumn that answers both questions?
5. How much of the benefit of arts education attribute to methods/pedagogy versus content?
6. The nature of the creative process is what defines whether it's art or engineering - Invention studio at GT.

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