Creativity and the Arts

Module titleCreativity and the Arts
Module codeEFPM224
Academic year2019/0
Module staff

Dr Kerry Chappell (Convenor)

Duration: Term123
Duration: Weeks



Number students taking module (anticipated)


Description - summary of the module content

Module description

What is creativity and how do the arts reflect and develop this phenomenon?  In this module we explore overlapping relationships between creativity and the arts in education drawing on research and practice within the social sciences and arts based educational research as applied to educational contexts.  It is taught by a team of specialists in creativity and the arts in relation to education.  You will develop your understanding of accounts of creativity with particular reference to key theoretical approaches e.g. possibility thinking and wise humanizing creativity.  You will be introduced to philosophical standpoints toward the arts and the aesthetic, and will explore pedagogical issues for creativity in learning and teaching the arts.  The module includes a focus on theory, policy and practice and gives you opportunities to discuss these with reference to varied cultural contexts.

This module is suitable for specialist or non-specialist students, although non-specialist students must have an active interest in a particular art form and be willing to undertake practical arts-based activity in visual arts, music, dance and drama.


Module aims - intentions of the module

To develop understanding of the key concept of creativity.

To provide an introduction to a range of philosophical standpoints towards the arts and the aesthetic.

To provide an introduction to important pedagogical issues for creativity in learning and teaching the arts different cultural contexts from the stances of theory, policy and practice.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

ILO: Module-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 1. demonstrate a critical understanding of the nature and value of creativity in education;
  • 2. demonstrate a critical understanding of learning in the arts;

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 3. critically reflect upon and evaluate your own approach or that of other specialist practitioners to fostering creativity in learning and teaching in the arts;
  • 4. critically appraise the module content in order to question and inform your own professional practice;

ILO: Personal and key skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 5. synthesise and organise ideas to present an argument;
  • 6. undertake both directed and independent study to recognise, justify and analyse key ideas in the literature and relate to practice;
  • 7. work collaboratively in small groups with peers; and
  • 8. present ideas verbally and through writing and engage in critical reflective debate.

Syllabus plan

Syllabus plan

Whilst the module's precise content may vary from year to year, it is envisaged that the syllabus will cover some or all of the following topics:

  • understanding creativity and how it can be framed; in particular Possibility Thinking and Wise Humanising Creativity as ways of understanding and nurturing creativity in the arts and beyond;
  • exploring characteristics of the arts, discussing misapprehensions and raising questions about defining the arts in various cultural contexts;
  • investigating the main theories of play, how they contribute to learning and relationship between play and creativity;
  • exploring Possibility Thinking as a way of understanding and nurturing creativity in the arts and beyond;
  • researching children's creativity in the arts and beyond;
  • documenting and assessing creativity in the arts and beyond; develop knowledge and understanding of creative teaching and learning in particular through partnership;
  • gaining an introduction to different pedagogical perspectives on learning and the implications for different teaching contexts and cultures.

The module seeks to enable you to apply approaches to creativity and the arts through active reflection on practice and theory with a focus on pedagogy alongside policy framing.  Independent, collaborative and peer to peer learning is also encouraged.  Core staff are joined by visiting lecturers who specialise in the applied areas such as arts-education partnership, student voice and participation; a visit is also usually made to a creative school.

This module descriptor captures two modes of delivery: campus-based (C) and blended (B).  In the Learning and Teaching section below there are two sets of numbers: one pertains to campus-based delivery and one to blended delivery.  Students enrolled on the blended mode will be expected to undertake more independent guided study than those on the campus-based mode.


Learning and teaching

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad
30 (C) 18 (B)270 (C) 282 (B)

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled Learning and Teaching Activities24 (C) (C): 2 x 1.5 hr lecture, 4 x 1.5 hr workshops, 2 x 1.5hr seminar (2 Saturdays with (B) students) AND 8 x 1.5 hr lecture/seminars
Scheduled Learning and Teaching Activities12 (B)(B): 2 x 1.5 hr lectures, 4 x 1.5 hr workshops, 2 x 1.5hr seminars (2 Saturdays with (C) students)
Scheduled Learning and Teaching Activities3 (C) 3 (B)Individual supervision by academic tutor, face to face or online.
Scheduled Learning and Teaching Activities 3 (C) 3 (B)Face to face or online debates facilitated by tutors
Guided independent study 32 (B)Independent Study using online directed tasks to study key aspects of creativity in specialist field arts practice
Guided independent study 80 (C) 60 (B)Directed study: preparatory work for taught sessions including reading; research tasks; collaborative tasks
Guided independent study 90 (C) (B)Assignment preparation
Guided independent study 100 (C) (B)Self directed study


Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Possibility of face to face presentation OR online presentation1500 words equivalent for presentation (approx 10 minutes)1-8 Verbal from tutor and peers

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Written Assignment 402500 words 1-6, 8Written and verbal from tutor
Written Assignment and annotated bibliography 502500 words plus 1000 words for bibliography1-6, 8Written and verbal from tutor
Contributions to online discussions10500 words1-8Written tutor feedback


Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
Written Assignment Written assignment (2500 words)1-6, 86 weeks
Written Assignment and annotated bibliographyWritten assignment (2500 words) and annotated bibliography (1000 words)1-6, 86 weeks
Contributions to online discussionsReflection on online discussion experience (500 words)1-8Written tutor feedback


Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Basic reading:

ABBS, P. (Ed) (1988) A is the Aesthetic, London, Falmer Press. Chapter 1.

ABBS, P. (1994) The Educational Imperative, London, Falmer Press, Chapter 3

ABBS, P. (2003) Against the flow: Education, the arts and post modern culture. London: Routledge Falmer.

BANAJI, S. & BURN, A. (2010) (2nd edition) The Rhetorics of Creativity: A Review of the Literature, London, Arts Council England.               

BANCROFT, S. FAWCETT, M. and HAY, P. (Eds) (2008) Researching Children Researching the World: 5x5x5=creativity. Trentham Books.

BEGHETTO, R. A. and KAUFMAN, J. C. 2007. Toward a broader conception of creativity: A case for 'mini-c' creativity. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity and the Arts, 12, 73-79.

BIESTA, G. J. J. (2006) Beyond learning: Democratic education for a human future Boulder: Paradigm

BODEN, (2004) The Creative Mind: Myths and Mechanisms, (2nd ed) London: Routledge. (‘In a Nutshell – pages 1-10)

BEST, D. (1992) The Rationality of Feeling, London, Falmer Press, Chapter 7.

CHAPPELL, K., WITH CRAFT, A. R., ROLFE, L., & JOBBINS, V. (2012). Humanizing creativity: Valuing our journeys of becoming. International Journal of Education & the Arts, 13(8). Retrieved [28 Nov 2013] from

CHAPPELL, K., ROLFE, L., CRAFT, A., JOBBINS, V. (2011). Close Encounters: Dance Partners for Creativity.  Stoke on Trent: Trentham Books

CHAPPELL, K. & CRAFT, A. (2011).  Creative Learning Conversations. Educational Research 53:3, 363-38

CHAPPELL, K., CRAFT, A., BURNARD, P., CREMIN, T (2008), Question-posing and Question-responding: the heart of ‘Possibility Thinking’ in the early years. Accepted for publication in Early Years, Vol 28, Issue 3, October 2008 pp267-286. Retrieved October 14, 2008, from

CRAFT A. (2005) Creativity in Schools: Tensions and Dilemmas. London: Routledge. Chapter 11: What is left? Creative co- construction

CRAFT, A (2010). Teaching for Possibility Thinking:  what is it, and how do we do it?  Learning Matters, Melbourne, Catholic Education Office, 15(5), 19-23

CRAFT, A. (2010), Possibility Thinking and Fostering Creativity with Wisdom:  opportunities and constraints in an English context. In Bhegetto, R., Kaufman, J. (Eds). Nurturing Creativity in the Classroom. Cambridge:  Cambridge University Press, 289-312

CRAFT, A. (2011). The Possibilities are Endless. Teach Nursery, 1(3) p49-50

CRAFT, A., CREMIN, T., BURNARD, P., CHAPPELL, K. (2007). Teacher Stance in Creative Learning: A Study of Progression. Thinking Skills and Creativity, Vol. 2, Issue 2, Autumn 2007 pp. 136-147

CRAFT, A., CREMIN, T., HAY, P., CLACK, J. (2012). Creative Primary Schools: Developing Pedagogy for Creativity. Paper presented at British Educational Research Association Conference, September 2012.

CRAFT, A., JEFFREY, B. and LEIBLING, M. (Eds) (2001), Creativity in Education.  London:  Continuum . Chapter 3: Anna Craft – Little c Creativity

CRAFT, A., McCONNON, L., MATTHEWS, A. (2012) Creativity and child-initiated play: fostering possibility thinking in four-year-olds.  Thinking Skills and Creativity , 7(1) , 48-61. doi:10.1016/j.tsc.2011.11.005

Creative Partnerships (2007) Building Creative Partnerships: A Handbook for Schools, London, Arts Council England. CREMIN, T., BURNARD, P., and CRAFT, A. (2006). Pedagogy and possibility thinking in the early years, Journal of Thinking Skills and Creativity Vol. 1, Issue 2, Autumn 2006, pp.108-119

CREMIN, T., CHAPPELL, K., CRAFT (2013), Reciprocity between narrative, questioning and imagination in the early and primary years. Thinking Skills and Creativity 9 (2013) 135– 151 DoI

FLEMING, Michael (2008) Arts in education and creativity: a review of the literature, Creative Partnerships and Arts Council England, London

GALLAGHER, K. M. (2011) In search of a theoretical basis for storytelling in education research: story as method, International Journal of Research & Method in Education, 34:1, 49-61

JEFFERY, G. (Ed) (2005), The Creative College: Building a Successful Learning Culture in the Arts, Stoke on Trent, Trentham Books. Chapter 5 - Professional identities: artist and activist teachers?

JEFFREY, B. & CRAFT, A. (2004), Teaching Creatively and Teaching for Creativity: distinctions and relationships, Educational Studies, 30 (1), 77-87.

NATIONAL ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON CREATIVE AND CULTURAL EDUCATION (NACCCE) (1999) All Our Futures: Creativity, Culture and Education. London: DfEE

McLELLAN, R., GALTON, M., STEWARD, S., PAGE, C. (2012)  The impact of creative initiatives on well-being: a literature review. Newcastle Upon Tyne: Creativity, Culture and Education. Chapter 5 Concluding thoughts: the relationship between creativity and wellbeing. Available at  h: ttp:// Wellbeing-and-Creativity.pdf

McWILLIAM, E. (2008). Unlearning how to teach. Innovations in Education and Teaching International, 45 (3), 263-269.

MOYLES, J. (2005) The Excellence of Play [2nd Edition] Maidenhead: Open University Press.

PAGEL, Mark (2012) Wired for Culture: the natural history of human cooperation, Allen Lane, pp.108-113

RINALIDI, C (2006) In Dialogue with Reggio Emilia: Listening, researching and learning, London, Routledge. Chapter 4:documentation and assessment

RING, K. (2006). Supporting young children drawing: Developing a role. International Journal of Education through Art, 2, 3, 195-209.

ROBINSON, K. (2001) Out of Our Minds: learning to be creative, Oxford: Capstone. Chapter 7 – Balancing the books

ROBINSON, K. (2009). The Element. How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything. Place, Publisher?

SPENCER, E., LUCAS, B., CLAXTON, G. (2012). Progression in Creativity:  developing new forms of assessment. Newcastle: CCE (7 July 2012)

THOMSON, P., HALL, C., JONES, K. & SEFTON-GREEN, J. (2012) The signature pedagogies project Final Report. Newcastle upon Tyne: Creativity, Culture and Education.  Available at:

TROTMAN, D. (2008) Liberating the wise educator, cultivating professional judgement in professional practice. In A. Craft, H. Gardner & G. Claxton Creativity, wisdom and trusteeship: Exploring the role of education. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press

WOOD, E, and ATTFIELD, J. (1996) Play, Learning and the Early Childhood Curriculum, London, Paul Chapman.

WINNER, E., GOLDSTEIN, T., VINCENT-LANCRIN, S. (2013). Art for art’s sake: The impact of arts education. Educational Research and Innovation, OECD Publishing.  

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Key words search

Creativity and arts

Credit value30
Module ECTS


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NQF level (module)


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