The strands, strand units and their associated learning outcomes are set out below. While the strand units are numbered, this is for ease of identification and does not imply a hierarchy of approach. The strands themselves are not numbered because it is recognised that in Art it is possible to begin a piece of work from any one of them. However, it is also important that all three are experienced by learners as they are interlinked and inter-dependent. Some Strand Units are particular to each strand, as are the learning outcomes contained within them. Furthermore, the learning outcomes within the three strands also reflect the fact that the relationship between the practical making of a work and the knowledge, skills, values and understanding of relevant examples of Visual Studies are symbiotic in nature. It is possible, in each strand, to apply some of the learning outcomes to both the practical making of work as well as to the field of Visual Studies.
Artists are visual detectives who are constantly questioning the world around them by exploring and investigating, mining the past and present and revealing the possibilities for the future. During the process of studying Art, learners will learn how to become a visual researcher; a conceptual explorer; a cultural archaeologist. As part of the research process they will learn to select a stimulus, choose a primary source and develop their ideas further. Learners will also have the opportunity to use their locality, such as galleries, museums, architecture, public sculpture and more for research purposes.
The learning outcomes in this strand address the research methods employed within a visual subject. Learners learn by and through Looking using primary sources or examples of significant works of Visual Studies; by Recording and documenting their thoughts, ideas, findings and observations in their sketchpads; through Experimenting and interpretation of what they observe and the work and ideas they then develop; by being cognisant of the evolving world around them through Contextual enquiries and by explicitly following a Process. Some of the learning outcomes in the Research Strand can also apply to both the practical making of work and to Visual Studies.
In Art, learners will be engaged in the process of making/creating art from conception through to realisation. Using a range of skills and their chosen materials, as appropriate, learners will create work based on a stimulus. As they develop their own work they will also be given the opportunity to respond to it as it progresses. This will provide them with an opportunity to understand what works and help them to gain confidence in changing direction if required. During reflection on the creative process, learners can examine their developing work and decide whether to fully realise it or if further research may be necessary. An important part of creating is that they also recognise the moment when a work is complete and know when to stop.
In learning to create work, the learning outcomes describe and capture the Making involved; the use of Contextual Enquiries, especially in learning to understand and use the art elements and design principles; the Process involved in following lines of enquiry and deciding on the realised work; the knowledge, skills and understanding required to communicate through the Realisation/Presentation of their work. Some of the learning outcomes in the Create Strand can apply to both the practical making of work and to Visual Studies.
Learners need to understand that in Art they can and do react to work, whether it is their own or another’s. They will be given the opportunity to reflect on and respond to their own work objectively and critically. In generating a response to work, learners may do so emotionally, critically, aesthetically or contextually, or even respond through a combination of these. They will learn to value their decisions and processes and be willing to edit and select from their ideas and work so that they are able to explain their choices and decisions. Ultimately, the learner moves closer to understanding the thinking of, and process of being, an artist.
The learning outcomes related to Responding involve the use of Analysis; the making of Contextual Enquiries to further understanding and knowledge; looking at ways to judge Impact and value; employing Critical and personal reflection; and learning to think about and rationalise their Process. Some of the learning outcomes in the Respond Strand can also apply to practical making of work and to Visual Studies.