Arts Voices: Middle School Students and the Relationships of the Arts to their Motivation and Self-Efficacy

Document Type


Subject Area(s)

Library and Information Science


This study explores the question "Does arts education have a relationship to eighth-grade rural middle school students' motivation and self-efficacy?" Student questionnaires, focus-group interviews, and follow-up interviews were data collection methods used with 92 eighth-grade middle school students. Strong emphasis was placed on gathering personal narratives, comments, and opinions directly from the students. Content analysis was used to analyze the student interviews. Middle school students felt that there were both positive and negative relationships between their arts education classes and their motivation and self-efficacy. The students in this study had much to share on the arts courses offered in their school. Personal motivation, belief in self, creative thinking, and peer relationships are only some of the topics addressed in this article.