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The information on this page is intended to be used by educators, administrators, area education agencies, students, parents and other individuals who have an interest in fine arts education in Iowa. Fine arts education includes the disciplines of Dance, General Music, Instrumental Music, Media Arts, Theatre, Visual Art, and Vocal Music.Back to top
Fine Arts Standards
Iowa's Fine Arts Standards were approved and adopted by the Iowa State Board of Education on November 15, 2017, based on the recommendation of the Iowa Fine Arts Standards Adoption Team. See the team's final report.
- Implementation of the Iowa Fine Arts Standards - Provides guidance on how to use Iowa's Fine Arts Standards.
- General Music Standards, K-8 (revised from National Coalition for Core Arts Standards)
Note: A small number of changes were made to the National Core Arts Standards to eliminate redundancies, provide clarification, and create developmentally appropriate expectations and continuity across grade levels. All changes are listed in blue. Blue font indicates minor changes to language, while blue highlighted areas indicate larger-scale changes to whole performance standards.
- Harmonizing Instruments Standards
- Music Composition and Theory Standards, 9-12
- Music Technology Standards, 9-12
- Traditional and Emerging Ensembles Standards
- Glossary for Music Standards
- Theatre Standards, K-12 (revised from National Coalition for Core Arts Standards)
Note: Minor changes were made to the National Core Arts Standards to provide clarification and create developmentally appropriate expectations and continuity across grade levels. All changes are listed in blue font.
- Glossary for Theatre Standards
Visual Arts Standards
Fine arts standards for early childhood are included in the Iowa Early Learning Standards - 3rd Edition - Area 5, Creative Arts, pages 166-181.
Looking for more resources to support implementation of Iowa's Fine Arts Standards? Check out our repository of templates, tools, lesson plans, and assessments available on AEA Learning Online. Log in, then search Module 5: Resources For Implementing Iowa's Fine Arts Standards.Back to top
Iowa Arts Education Data Project
The Iowa Arts Education Data Project showcases Iowa’s arts education data through a user-friendly, interactive dashboard. The dashboard is intended to promote meaningful dialogue around arts education across the state and to encourage equitable and data-driven decisions by schools, districts, educators, community members, and policymakers that support a well-rounded education for all Iowa students.
The Iowa Arts Education Data Project displays high school course and enrollment data by fine arts discipline—dance, music, theatre, visual arts, and media arts/other—as well as by grade level, gender, and school demographics. Stakeholders can use the data to determine areas of strength as well as areas of need. By providing a variety of demographic lenses as well as various grain sizes by which to view the data—state, AEA region, district, and school—the dashboard provides compelling snapshots of fine arts education access and opportunities across Iowa.Back to top
Online Professional Development Modules
The Iowa Department of Education will partner with AEA Learning Online to offer five free online professional learning modules around Iowa's Fine Arts Standards. Designed to be flexible to district and educator needs, they can be taken individually or bundled together for one license renewal credit.
The modules are:
- Introducing Iowa's Fine Arts Standards
- Understanding Iowa's Fine Arts Standards
- Applying and Connecting Iowa's Fine Arts Standards
- Assessing Iowa's Fine Arts Standards
- Resources for Implementing Iowa's Fine Arts Standards
To enroll in the modules, go to https://training.aealearningonline.orgBack to top
The following laws reference arts education:
Good Conduct-GPA Policies and Curricular and Co-Curricular Activities - Explains the restrictions on imposing grade penalties for imposing academic penalties in curricular activities (such as vocal music and instrumental music competitions) based on application of a school's Good Conduct rule or minimum GPA standards for participation in activities.Back to top
Festivals, Contests, Exhibits, & Competitions
For information about Iowa high school music festivals/contests, contact the Iowa High School Music Association at 515-432-2013 or visit the website.
For information about Iowa visual arts student exhibits and competition opportunities, contact the Art Educators of Iowa.
The following arts education organizations are actively serving Iowa educators in areas of professional development, advocacy, and leadership opportunities:
- Art Educators of Iowa
- First Iowa Orff Chapter 28 - Cedar Falls
- Iowa Alliance for Arts Education
- Iowa Arts Council
- Iowa Bandmasters Association
- Iowa Communication Association
- Iowa Choral Directors Association
- Iowa High School Speech Association
- Iowa Music Educators Association
- Iowa Music Teachers Association
- Iowa String Teachers Association
- Iowa Thespians
- Jazz Educators of Iowa
- KEI - Kodaly Educators of Iowa
- Sioux Valley Orff - Sioux City