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Designing Your Art Curriculum

Designing Your Art Curriculum

In this practical course, you’ll discover strategies for designing a highly personalized curriculum specific to the needs of your unique students and your individual style through the exploration of various approaches in the field of art education and real art curricula samples from across the globe. You will discuss and analyze traditional and contemporary philosophies that drive curricula in the art room as you cultivate ideas applicable to your own classroom needs. At the completion of this course, you will have produced your own comprehensive art curriculum ready for immediate implementation.

For the official course description, see the course syllabus or Graduate Catalog.

Required Materials

No text required for this course.

Additional Materials

  • Computer with basic audio and video output equipment
  • Internet access (broadband recommended)
  • Basic computing skills (see AOEU’s Technology Requirements)
  • Access to AOEU’s online learning platform, Brightspace, to view course content, submit assignments, and engage in discussion (provided)
  • Word-processing platform (Microsoft Office, Pages, Google Docs)
Graduate Credits
All courses will now close at 11 PM Central time on the 27th of each month. Graduate Credits 3 Graduate Credits
Price Graduate Credit $1197.00
Mon 8 Sun
Nov 1 Weeks Dec 26
Upcoming Course Run Dates
Nov 1 Jan 2
Dec 6 Feb 6
Jan 3 Feb 27
Feb 7 Apr 3
Mar 7 May 1
Only 8 days remaining to enroll in the next section of this course.
AOEU Course Code
Morningside Course Code
EDUC500 AOE007

Course Objectives

  • Critique the impact of new and historical trends on art education.
  • Integrate culturally responsive practices into teaching and curriculum development.
  • Assess and produce various visual arts K-12 curricula for alignment, engagement, and bias.
  • Develop curricula that aligns with national, state, and/or district standards, supports the unique needs of individual learners, and is appropriately scaffolded by grade level.
  • Design lessons and other curricular materials.

Course Breakdown

Week 1
Reflection & Inspiration
  1. Analyze the impact of historical perspectives on art education trends.
  2. Identify personal and professional goals for curricular design.
Week 2
Big Ideas & Backward Design
  1. Devise new visions for your art curriculum through the creation of a curriculum concept map.
  2. Utilize backward design to build on your district, state, and/or national standards and create curricular documents to reflect your teaching philosophy.
Week 3
  1. Develop learning outcomes for your classroom based on standards, as well as horizontal and vertical alignment.
  2. Investigate how various standards can be leveraged to scaffold skills.
Week 4
  1. Explore authentic, informative, and sustainable assessment practices to integrate into your curriculum.
  2. Deepen an understanding of best practices in curriculum design.
Week 5
Decoding Differentiation for the Art Room
  1. Identify growth areas for inclusivity, differentiation, and technology integration in your art curriculum.
  2. Plan a differentiated mini-lesson.
Week 6
Growth Mindset Strategies for the Art Classroom
  1. Develop strategies for using the curriculum to nurture a growth mindset.
  2. Create a self-reflection activity for classroom implementation.
Week 7
Scaffolding & Curriculum Expansion
  1. Conduct critiques of curriculum maps.
  2. Expand your curriculum map to include an additional grade level or course.
Week 8
  1. Reflect on the process of developing a comprehensive curriculum.
  2. Prepare a comprehensive portfolio that houses all of your matrices, lesson plans, organizational tools, and reflections from this class.

Reflecting Upon Your Curricular Journey

A sample assignment from Week 4 of the class Designing Your Art Curriculum

1. Research

When establishing an assessment routine, the goal is to ensure the practices you instill are meaningful and sustainable for both the students and the teacher.

2. Discussion

Consider which assessments will provide meaningful feedback to your students and how you will provide them the opportunity to analyze and use that feedback.

3. Practical, Hands-On Application

Create an assessment routine plan for the art classroom! For example, you might identify a pre-assessment, in-progress self-critique, and a summative assessment for each unit. Or, for each lesson, you might include quick, daily, formative assessments followed by a summative reflection and self-assessment.

What do past course participants think?

Hundreds of art teachers have taken the course Designing Your Art Curriculum. Here’s what they actually think — without cherry-picking.
(12-month rolling average from all post-course survey respondents – Updated 1/28/2021


Course content was relevant and current.


Instructor was knowledgeable and provided value-added contributions.


I achieved the goals I set at the beginning of the course. 

Let's Get Started

If you know what you need, then go ahead and register.

Don't worry if you still have questions. Our admissions counselors keep up with the requirements for teachers in your state and can help you choose a course that's right for you and your career.

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Please contact the Registrar (registrar@theartofeducation.edu) with questions.