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‘Arts Award is having a positive impact on young people’s education and career trajectories' 

The Arts Award Impact Study has found that Arts Award is a driver of young people’s educational and professional success.

All young people participating benefitted in some way from doing Arts Award and half experienced specific positive impacts on their education or job chances.

Benefits experienced by all participants included improved communication, people and organisational skills, new contacts or connections and increased confidence. 95% of advisers reported seeing a ‘great impact’ on young people’s personal confidence, which young people and advisers indicated as supporting a range of ‘hard’ outcomes.

Hard outcomes linked to Arts Award include engagement or re-engagement with school or study, educational progression, participation in the arts and paid work.

 

‘Arts Award can be conceived of as a transformative experience, whatever level is taken’

Doing Gold Award resulted in hard outcomes for all but two young people. While at Bronze level almost a third of young people surveyed (29%) reported experiencing improved school learning, or a positive impact on career aspirations, educational progression or A Level choices.

‘Arts Award is a truly universal qualification that produces hard outcomes across the board’

Hard outcomes were found regardless of gender and for young people from different circumstances including those from a range of socioeconomic and ethnic backgrounds.

Accreditation was considered by advisers as crucial to Arts Award’s value, 95% felt it was important or very important to offer Arts Award in order to validate young people’s creative and artistic achievements via a recognised qualification.

Andrew Freeman, Director Europe, Trinity College London, commented:
‘Teachers and arts professionals have repeatedly told us how important Arts Award is to young people’s lives. Now it is clearly confirmed that Arts Award is recognised as a valuable qualification which offers all young people tangible benefits. Trinity is proud to count Arts Award among our portfolio of exams and assessments available across the UK.’

Laura Gander-Howe, Director Children, Young People and Learning, Arts Council England added:
‘These findings reinforce the contribution that Arts Award is making to young people’s futures through our schools and through arts, cultural and heritage organisations. Over the 10 years since Arts Award’s launch, arts and cultural education in this country has been enriched and talent nurtured by the programme.’

The research team, which included representatives from London Metropolitan University and University of East London, commented: ‘The research found advisers, other staff, and young people full of praise for certain aspects of the Arts Award qualification which had produced a positive experience for them…Arts Award’s pedagogy is exemplary!’

The Arts Award Impact Study was a longitudinal study of Arts Award’s impact which tracked 68 young people over three years. It was led by London South Bank University, on behalf of Trinity College London. More details including an infographic showing the main findings is available at artsaward.org.uk/impactstudy