Title

Does Art Make You Smart? A Longitudinal Experiment of the Effects of Multiple Arts-Focused Field Trips

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2-23-2019

Keywords

art education, field trips, school engagement, test scores

Abstract

This paper presents second year results from the first ever multi-visit, longitudinal experiment on the benefits from arts-focused field trips. Students in fourth and fifth grades in ten elementary schools in a large urban school district were randomly assigned to receive three arts-related field trips throughout the school year, including an art museum, a live theater production, and a symphony performance or to serve as a control. We find that treatment students exhibit higher levels of school engagement as measured by students’ behavioral infractions and self-reported engagement. We also find that treatment students perform significantly better on their end of year standardized tests, up to 16% of a standard deviation increase. These effects are persistent even one year following treatment. However, the effects appear to be stronger for the first cohort of students in our sample.

Comments

EDRE Working Paper No. 2019-05

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