Year of Award


Document Type


Degree Type

Master of Arts (MA)

Degree Name

Fine Arts (Integrated Arts and Education)

Department or School/College

Creative Pulse Program

Committee Chair

Randy Bolton

Commitee Members

Ann C. Wright, Karen Kaufmann


Expeditionary Learning


University of Montana


My final creative project began as an effort to be a quality educator who offered a memorable education to my students. I believe that students should be more involved with their education which is where my idea to research expeditionary learning came from. I had to design, plan and execute many activities in order to provide these expeditions. I planned a trip to Europe for the first expedition. This trip took place in the summer of 2008. I brought eight students along with two parents on this adventure. We went to London, Paris, Florence, Assisi, and Rome. This expedition proved to be truly educational, full of hard work, and life changing. The next few expeditions were on a smaller scale, but were equally educationally meaningful. The first project was a study of Andy Goldsworthy. Within this project, students assembled objects from nature into an arrangement. These arrangements emphasized one or more of the 5 elements of art. The students would then decide upon the best view of their work to be photographed. We then headed to the UM Helena School of Technology. Outside of the college, stands a gigantic geometric sculpture by local artist, Richard Swanson. The objective of this expedition was to discover how light moves across a three-dimensional form. Next the students, and I headed out to the top of the hill in front of our school. Students stood side by side up on the sidewalk that lined the top of the hill as we looked down at the face of our school. This location was easily accessible and offered many vantage points for discovery and observation. The goal of this expeditionary learning project was to conquer the fear of the unknown. I did succeed at this by finding myself through educating others. I understand myself better through my successes and my failures. Learning requires assent and action. Learning also requires practice, correction, and self-correction. Expeditionary learning helped me to become a better educator, but most importantly I was able to let go and really see my students, myself, and the world without preconceptions.



© Copyright 2009 Angie Susag