This morning I was part of a team at my school discussing STEM versus STEAM, an interesting concept including arts in the paradigm of STEM.
I checked STEAM online, and found this (quite horrible) infographic from the University of Florida:
What you get is an interesting idea, STEAM, from a field of research Arts Education that borrows something from neurology to become more trustworthy, to be taken more serious. The sad thing is: by doing this they spread further a neuromyth and people will believe it because it comes from a university. An university mentioning sources in their infographic which actually explain why what they are depicting is complete nonsense and linking in their explanation to a website with an overview of views from Randstad that, besides some research mentioned in HBR, isn’t scientific at all, even linking to another neuromyth Whole Brain thinking.
So, my personal advice and plea: stick to your own strong points and don’t go looking for explanations in fields of research you don’t know enough about because of 2 different possible dangerous consequences:
- People who do know something about this will think you’re inadequate and won’t believe the stuff you actually now about, or
- People who don’t know anything about it will believe wrong information.
Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want to blame the University of Florida, I’ve taken it as an example, but it happens quite a lot.
And discussing Arts Education, I think the OECD, maybe surprising to some, had it wright when they chose this as a title for their report on arts education: Art for Art’s Sake?