In case you haven’t already heard, there is a groundbreaking research project underway called the Teaching Artist Research Project (TARP). Yes, that’s correct, its a good acronym to use for an entirely different project.
TARP is the first national study to examine the world and work of teaching artists. The motivation for the study comes from the remarkable advances in arts education, both in and out of schools, over the last fifteen years, despite a difficult policy environment. Teaching artists, the hybrid professionals that link the arts to education and community life, are the creative resource behind much of this innovation.
Research shows that the work of teaching artists makes a large and important contribution to our communities. But there is no systematic information about teaching artists’ career, which this project hopes to capture.
TARP hopes to deepen the understanding of the lives and work of teaching artists through studies in twelve communities, and it will inform policy designed to make their work sustainable, more effective, and more meaningful.
TARP is being conducted by the major research center NORC at the University of Chicago. Its principal investigator is Nick Rabkin, a founder of the Chicago Arts Partnerships in Education, a contributor to Champions of Change: The Impact of Arts on Learning, and author of Putting the Arts in the Picture: Reframing Education in the 21st Century. He is the former director of the Center for Arts Policy at Columbia College Chicago. TARP is supported by 25 foundations and state and local arts agencies.
If you’re a teaching artist or manage a program that hires teaching artists, TARP wants to hear from you. Click here to learn more, register, and become part of this very exciting and important project.