Arts education, for many administrations, can be a frustrating course of study. The question of whether or not it is an important skill to have students learn or whether it’s frivolous is a constant argument between administrators and teachers. The best practices for arts education in the classroom can lead to improvements in test scores, development in critical thinking skills, and increases in understanding in many non-arts related subjects. Neurodivergent students rely on arts education because, for many, the way that they understand the world is through artistic practices such as music, theater, visual arts, and literature. Many students rely on theatrical education as a way to improve their skills in the classroom, as well as their skills in their development in high school. This project discusses research and literature that talks about the importance of theater education in school curriculums, the importance of providing neurodivergent students safe, psychologically protected spaces for growth in learning, and how to make a traditionally teacher-centered subject into a mutually beneficial learning-centered subject.

Exit Requirement

Action Research

Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Teaching (initial licensure)

Committee Chair

Joshua Schulze

Committee Member

Eric Berge


neurodivergent, theater, arts education, best practices



Type (DCMI Terms)


Subject Categories

Dramatic Literature, Criticism and Theory | Performance Studies | Secondary Education

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