Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Dr. William Charland

Second Advisor

Dr. Christina Chin

Third Advisor

Dr. Patricia Villalobos


Art education, multicultural, social justice, curriculum, middle level

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


The way in which children are taught matters a great deal and influences not only their worldview, but also how they view themselves with that world. Through my experiences as an art teacher, I have witnessed a growing need for teaching students in a way that focuses on multicultural and social justices issues in order to help students gain a more well-rounded world view. The art classroom has to power to serve as a safe and effective place to explore these issues. Determining why there is a growing need for a multicultural and social justice oriented art curriculum was important in distilling the important features of an effective curriculum. In addition, researching common approaches to multicultural education was important to figuring out the strengths and weaknesses to various approaches. The common threads in more effective teaching approaches were: a classroom or school that is student centered, focuses on democratic education, is message oriented, uses primary sources, and investigates power relationships. Using this information, I developed a curriculum for the sixth, seventh, and eighth grades that aims to meet the needs of teaching students art in a way that focuses on social justice and multicultural issues.