Bree Neyland

Bree Neyland, Undergraduate student, art education

Teaches problem-solving through art

“Bree’s approach to this research is asset-based and leverages the creative, interpretive capacities of art to empower REACH students to see themselves as problem-solvers and artists. I have little doubt that REACH students will look back on their participation in this program as one of the most enjoyable experiences of their college experiences.” -Allison Rowe, clinical assistant professor, art education

Hometown: Sydney, Australia, but I have lived in Iowa since 2005 and in the U.S. since 1994.

Faculty mentor/advisor: I have two: Allison Rowe, PhD, MFA, clinical assistant professor, art education; Jordan Immerfall, academic coordinator, UI REACH, College of Education

What is your degree program and expected graduate date? Art education, expected graduation December 2023 (undergraduate)

Please describe your research: I’m designing a problem-based art curriculum for students in special education post-secondary programs such as UI REACH, focusing on translatable skill development for transition to post-secondary goals.

In simple terms, why does this research matter? A problem-solving-focused curriculum allows for more interdisciplinary lesson planning that reinforces learning, living, and working skills such as identifying problems and creating plans for meeting them, as well as contextualizing skill development in explorations of identity and voice.

How soon after starting at the University of Iowa were you able to participate in research? I just finished my first year and have been thinking about this project in different coursework since I started.

How has being involved in research made you more successful at the University of Iowa? It has also helped me see how all the parts of my scholarship fit together so that it can be easily adapted to suit the needs of different audiences. I’ve also been able to connect with other researchers around the world and to think about potential collaboration opportunities for further research.

What are your career goals and/or plans after graduation? As an art teacher, I’d like to find ways to encourage people to just do more art! More specifically, I’d like to work with students with special education needs, as well as traditional students, in a variety of educational settings, but especially in secondary and post-secondary environments.

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