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Ethical Matters:
STEM vs Humanities: The Necessity of Aesthetic Education

28th January 2024 · 3:00pm - 4:30pm

Doors open: 2:45pm

Brockway Room | Virtual event

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Ethical Matters: STEM vs Humanities: The Necessity of Aesthetic Education

The Necessity of Aesthetic Education is a manifesto. As funding cuts increasingly slash the support for the arts, there is a need to argue for why the arts and arts education is valuable, for their own sake, as well as for the positive contributions they can and do make to society. That which is experienced through art, through the many various and diverse art forms and media, is essentially valuable to the lives of human beings. In order to fully appreciate and gain the most out of the arts, which offer a variety of aesthetic experience, there are concepts, skills and techniques integral to such understanding.

Laura D’Olimpio argues that aesthetic education ought to be a compulsory part of education for all school-aged students, from pre-primary to high school, on the basis of its distinctive value. This is a timely argument given the crisis in the arts and humanities, with declining student numbers in subjects that do not have a direct vocational correlative, and increased focus on science, engineering, technology and mathematics (STEM) subjects.

Dr Laura D’Olimpio is Associate Professor of Philosophy of Education at the University of Birmingham, UK. Prior to taking up this position in 2019, Laura was Senior Lecturer in Philosophy at The University of Notre Dame Australia. Laura completed her PhD ‘The Moral Possibilities of Mass Art’ at The University of Western Australia. She is co-founder and co-editor of the open access Journal of Philosophy in Schools. She is also a regular contributor to The Conversation, Philosophy Now magazine, The Ethics Centre, and ABC Radio National’s Philosopher’s Zone and The Minefield. Laura’s first book, Media and Moral Education: a Philosophy of Critical Engagement (London, Routledge, 2018) won the 2018 PESA (Philosophy of Education Society of Australasia) Annual Book Award.

Age Recommendation



Standard (in person) £9 • Concessions (in person) £6 Standard (online) £6 Members FREE 

Access Information

Due to the age and Grade Il listing of the building, there is no lift access to rooms above the ground floor.

All the ground-floor rooms are fully accessible by wheelchair. Main Hall (street access, step-free), Brockway Room (street access, step-free), Bertrand Russell Room (street access, shallow ramp), Hive Cafe (street access, step-free), There is also an accessible toilet on the ground floor opposite the Brockway Room.

If you have any questions regarding your access needs, please get in touch with our team and we will accommodate as best as we can. Get in touch:

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Further Info

This event will be held with an in-person audience at Conway Hall and online via livestream. Everyone wishing to join this event must register for a ticket in advance.

If you have any accessibility enquiries, please contact us at / 020 7405 1818.

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