To: Loyalist College Principal
Subject: Summary Report: The advantages of using Mural art in learning mental health and Loyalist College response
The purpose of this report is to summarize the advantages of using mural arts to enhance the learning of mental health courses by students of Loyalist College. There are many mural paintings in the school building, however, the report will determine if their location has enhanced the promotion of mental health awareness.
Facts and Findings
This section will examine the relationship between mural art and mental health. Additionally, it will scrutinize how effective it is to place them in a strategic position for public viewing. This will be done through a review of previous studies done and observation on how students of Loyalist College use mural paintings in the school’s building.
The problem of placing mural painting inside the building rather than outside.
Even though mental issues are common, it is difficult to talk about them. However, mural painting can be used to spread mental health awareness. This awareness should be spread in the public and not to specific people in a given segment. Placing mural art outside the school building will add more value to the school and the public. For instance, the art will enhance mental health awareness to people who visit the school. Apart from promoting awareness, it will brighten individuals and provide information one may need to help others. Moreover, paintings and drawings help promote the welfare of an individual in addition to improving mental and emotional awareness. Research has shown that people who use mural art have the ability to think critically, be original, and innovate. The world needs better thinkers; however, if the painting is placed inside the school’s building, only a few people will have access to it. Precisely only a few of those who have access to it will use it. This is because many people perceive art as a means of entertainment and they would prefer to look at it in their free time. Therefore, the problem of placing mural painting inside the school building is that it will only serve as a decoration material but not an educational purpose.
The relationship between mural art and mental health. Art is a universal medium that can be used to raise medal health awareness as well as reduce the stigma associated with mental illness. Mental health issues can be expressed using art as a public health approach (Clift, and Paul 200). This is because the arts provide basic information about depression and enable people to engage in conversations involving mental health. Nonetheless, art is linked with solutions to many problems as it has the ability to promote the thinking process, which improves the well-being of society, hence raising mental health awareness. Moreover, art is every day’s innovative solution for students who can connect what they learn in class with what is presented in the paintings.
Advantages of using mural art to promote mental health awareness. Mural art is interactive, which enables students to engage in self-directed learning (Melcher, Barry, and Kristin 106). As a result, students develop creative and critical thinking. Markedly, as students come across the murals, they relate the facts learned in class and the observation they make. This is because arts enables people to employ the sense of sight, taste, smell, sound, and touch. Additionally, students enrolled in mental-health programs can use mural arts to express their feelings, thoughts, and ideas. Moreover, the public can benefit from mural art since it can help them understand better the concept of mental health as well as eliminate the stigma associated with mental illness.
Loyalist college response to mural paintings. Studies have shown that student learning is connected to arts, which has social benefits and increases engagement. However, despite Loyalist College knowing the advantages of using mural art to emphasize facts, it has many mural paintings inside their school building but few in the outside block. These murals paintings are aimed at students who study in the college. However, a large number of students do not bother to use mural art for study purposes since they only get to the building for scheduled lessons. After observing the behaviors of students at Loyalist College, I noticed that only a few students pose to look at the paintings on the walls before proceeding to their classes. Therefore, even though Loyalist plays its part in proving the necessary paintings, the college does not place them in a strategic position, which is convenient for all students. As a result, the painting is used for decorative purposes rather than serving as educational material.
Other post-secondary campus responses to mural art. Another Canadian post-secondary institution, the Mohawk College, has taken on an active role in promoting health awareness using mural art. They have posted mural art not only inside the school building but also on the walls outside. This practice has helped spread awareness not only in the school but also in the surrounding community.
Mural arts play a role in education and it can be used to spread mental health awareness. Whereas Loyalist College uses mural painting inside the school building, Mohawk College has posted mural art both inside and outside its building as shown by observation research. Therefore, Mohawk College has advanced in spreading mental health awareness as compared to Loyalist College.
Clift, Stephen, and Paul Marc Camic, eds. Oxford Textbook of Creative Art, Health, and Wellbeing: International Perspectives on Practice, Policy, and Research. Oxford University Press, 2016, pp.1-343.