Research at MICA is intended to explain how art and design have significant and measurable impact on society, policy, commerce, art education, and science.
The first art college to establish a vice provost position responsible for research, MICA develops arts and design-based solutions to complex problems using scientific discovery practices and methodical and documented art-making processes. MICA continues to support research that investigates pedagogy and questions that arise out of the intersection of studio and classroom practice.
MICA works with partners to develop longer-term negotiated contracts led by faculty, or shorter-term "sponsored studios" in which students work with faculty as part of coursework. Research is coordinated through the College's three research centers: Design Practice, Design Thinking, Race and Culture. Art Education research is an integral part of all art education masters degrees and a strong focus of the MA in Art Education. Other initiatives, such as the Community Arts Convening and Research Project, have similar national impact.
- Health- communication design, spatial and urban design, healthy lifestyles, prevention
- Community/Urban Engagement- community empowerment, urban revitalization, community planning, historic preservation, affordable and green housing, smart growth
- Intersections of Art, Design, and Technology- information visualization, usability/interface design, serious games, fabrication technologies/methods, smart materials/textiles
- Sustainability, Environment, and Energy- design, communication, education, food issues (urban farming and food systems)
- Intersections of Art, Design, and Science- integrated informal education for STEM (STEAM), scientific visualization and neuroesthetics/neuroeducation.
- Art Education - testing various strategies for teaching for their potential to deepen the engagement of students and other questions
Recent projects and partners:
- w/ MD Energy Administration- project to reduce state-wide energy consumption
- w/ Museum of Arts and Design (New York)-the Global Africa Project
- w/ Baltimore City Heath Department- projects to prevent HIV/AIDS and youth violence
- w/ Real Food Farms- project to improve access to healthy food in inner-city
- w/ Downtown Partnership- design ideas for the 1812 Bicentennial
- Greener Groceries project explores using vacant lots and big box stores as local farms, and other ways to reexamine packaging and delivery of food
- w/ National Art Education Association- Think Tank conference in 2010 to pursue new approaches to diversity in art education
Engages students in problem-solving research, experimentation, and collaboration to develop design-based solutions to societal challenges.
Publishes original research on graphic design. Its flagship graphic design textbook The New Basics has become a must-have text for designers and educators around the world, integrating formal design thinking with digital technology and contemporary media theory.
Brings artists and designers from all over the world together to explore how diverse artists and experiences impact the broader world of art and design. This year's Global Africa Project has garnered international acclaim.
Studies conduced by graduate students in classroom or instructional settings are submitted for publication in peer-reviewed journals. Click here to find links to published articles and a list of investigations by theme. Nearly all students have presented their research at national conferences.
MICA-led national collaboration between community-based artists, students, scholars, civic leaders, and youth to share best practices, models, and ideas through conferences, research, and communication