The Art of Science Learning

The Art of Science Learning is a National Science Foundation-funded initiative that uses the arts to spark creativity in science education and the development of an innovative 21st Century STEM workforce.

The initiative is built on more than 15 years of work by Harvey Seifter and colleagues, exploring the impact of artistic skills, processes and experiences on learning and the innovation process.


Exploring teachers’ perceptions of STEAM teaching through professional development: implications for teacher educators

Danielle Herro and Cassie Quigley

Professional Development in Education, 2017, Vol. 43, No. 3, 416-438.


This research involves a multi-year study examining the perspectives and classroom practices of 21 middle school mathematics and science teachers, in the southeastern United States, participating in professional development (PD) exploring science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics (STEAM) literacies. This study sought to understand teachers’ perceptions and practices before and after a PD in which STEAM integration was explored through project-based learning involving the political, social, economical, environmental and historical context of a local river. Participants used digital media as a means of communicating and collaborating with peers and mentors, collecting and analyzing data, and creating and sharing projects. Results suggest teachers increased their understanding of STEAM to teach content and perceived the STEAM PD as an effective initial step to change practice, citing the importance of collaboration and technology integrated directly into the learning process. Implications from this study offer other teacher educators valuable considerations towards developing successful STEAM PD to effect successful STEAM teaching.

Integrating the Arts and STEM for Gifted Learners

Hope E. Wilson


Roeper Review, 2018, 40(2), 108-120


This study investigates the process of identifying high-quality lessons for gifted learners that integrate the arts with science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields. These STEAM lessons have the potential to develop deep thinking, as well as develop creativity and visual–spatial skills that are necessary in the STEM disciplines. Lessons were solicited from teachers through their involvement in national organizations, and 61 lessons were analyzed and reviewed by experts in the arts and STEM fields, as well as master teachers. High-quality lessons provided deep content knowledge in both STEM and arts fields, connections across content areas, specific criteria for assessment, and collaborations between teachers and between students. The findings from this study will be used to further define the evaluation process for STEAM lessons designed for gifted learners and to develop professional development opportunities for teachers of the gifted.




A Place for Art and Design Education in the STEM Conversation

 James W. Bequette & Marjorie Bullitt Bequette 

Art Education, 65 (2), 40-47,  Published online: 24 Nov 2015

The recent push for STEM education introduces (through the emphasis on engineering) a design process to science classrooms; some educators also pushed for the artistic or creative process becoming a part of STEM education. In certain cases, this might be an opportunity for greater prominence for art education, better art and STEM learning, and heightened student engagement; in others it might weaken each discipline and confuse the boundaries between different approaches. In what follows, we describe the possibilities and pitfalls of an approach that infuses both the creative process and design thinking into a new iteration of STEM education that adds arts (with a capital “A”) to the acronym to make STEAM.

STEAM by another name: Transdisciplinary practice in art and design education

Tracie Constantino


The recent movement to include art and design in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) education has made Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics (STEAM) an increasingly common acronym in the education lexicon. The STEAM movement builds on existing models of interdisciplinary curriculum, but what makes the union of art and design with the STEM disciplines so persuasive? In this article, I draw from research on interdisciplinary curricular projects that fit into the category of STEAM, but may also be considered inquiries into the role of art and design in the creative inquiry process, in order to sketch a transdisciplinary curriculum model that may be applied across disciplines.