Engaging trainee teachers with crafts and cultural heritage | Intellect Skip to content
Volume 12, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 1743-5234
  • E-ISSN: 2040-090X



This article concerns perspectives on, and formative experiences of, crafts and cultural heritage reported by twenty exchange students from seven countries who studied Cultural Heritage and Craft Education in an International Study Programme at a University in Finland. The research is reported in a cultural ecological framework. Data were collected through individual and group activities concerned with students’ understandings of key terms, memories evoked by undertaking craft activities, values held about crafts and cultural heritage, and accounts of craft education. Results show that engaging in craft practices evokes strong associations with people, places, artefacts, activities, feelings and sensations. Crafts are valued particularly for the way they connect with culture and the possibilities they offer for self-expression. Cultural heritage is associated with crafts but relationships between the two are not taught in schools. The significance of the research concerns the case made for connecting crafts and cultural heritage in a broader conceptualization of arts education.


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