Essays on Systems Thinking: Applications for Art Education


  • Jeffrey L. Broome Florida State University
  • Victoria Eudy Florida State University
  • Yuha Jung University of Kentucky
  • Ann Rowson Love Florida State University
  • Julia Marshall San Francisco State University
  • Cathy Smilan University of Massachusetts Dartmouth
  • Delane Ingalls Vanada University of North Carolina Charlotte
  • Pat Villeneuve Florida State University


systems thinking, art education


Systems thinking offers a critique of traditional methods of analytic problem solving and presents new possibilities for conceptualizing the interconnected nature of all parts of unified systems.  In this article, a collective group of scholars speculates on how systems thinking might be applied to art education, arts administration, and museum education as a way to reconceptualize entrenched problem solving practices in interrelated arts professions.  The article begins with a brief literature review before presenting arguments related to (a) the congruency of systems thinking with interdisciplinary and informal learning approaches, (b) a critique of current educational systems built upon rigid uncreative traditions, (c) recent research supporting learner-centered pedagogies as effective approaches for breaking away from linear systems of schooling, and (d) the application of eco-feminist systems thinking to visitor-centered museum education.  The article concludes with a discussion of the reoccurring themes and lingering questions that emerged within the respective arguments.

Author Biographies

Jeffrey L. Broome, Florida State University

Department of Art Education, Professor

Victoria Eudy, Florida State University

Department of Art Education, Doctoral Student

Yuha Jung, University of Kentucky

Department of Arts Administration, Assistant Professor

Ann Rowson Love, Florida State University

Department of Art Education, Assistant Profesor

Julia Marshall, San Francisco State University

School of Art, Professor

Cathy Smilan, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth

College of Visual & Performing Arts, Associate Professor

Delane Ingalls Vanada, University of North Carolina Charlotte

Department of Art and Art History, Assistant Professor

Pat Villeneuve, Florida State University

Department of Art Education, Professor


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Special Call - Systems Thinking