The Arts and Socioemotional Development: Evaluating a New Mandate for Arts Education

  • Steven J. Holochwost
  • Dennie Palmer Wolf
  • Kelly R. Fisher
  • Kerry O’Grady
  • Kristen M. Gagnier


In this chapter, we present the results of an evaluation that assesses whether an education in the arts may contribute to the development of socioemotional skills. To address this question, data were collected from N = 892 students (77.3% of color) participating in one of 11 programs in visual arts, music, theater, or dance. While our analyses revealed trend-level effects for programs on growth mindset and artistic goal orientation for the sample as a whole, significant effects were observed among younger students for growth mindset and for school engagement among students with high levels of engagement prior to program participation. We discuss the implications of these findings, which, given the composition of our sample, can be generalized to low-income students of color.


Arts education Socioemotional development Growth mindset 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Steven J. Holochwost
    • 1
  • Dennie Palmer Wolf
    • 1
  • Kelly R. Fisher
    • 2
  • Kerry O’Grady
    • 2
  • Kristen M. Gagnier
    • 2
  1. 1.WolfBrownMAUSA
  2. 2.Johns Hopkins UniversityBaltimoreUSA

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