AB37 Media Arts Standards

Once a young person discovers digital media arts, life changes, dreams change, school changes, the future begins to come into focus. CA Assembly Bill 37 establishes Media Arts as the 5th distinct pillar of the arts in education to add to music, theater, dance and visual arts! When these legislated standards are written and voluntarily adopted, a great K12 curriculum will emerge. Teachers will be properly trained, able to modernize and energize every classroom, forge new CA skilled workers and accelerate the growth of our creative economy and democratic civic engagement.

Follow the path of AB 37 directly and write a strong support letter. Every student will benefit!

AB 37 Media Arts Q and A

Learn more about AB37 and why giving teachers access to high quality media arts teaching materials is critical to modernizing education in our schools.

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Contact Your Representatives

Make sure your elected representatives know that you support AB 37! Learn how to contact them, and view an example letter with suggested copy.

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AB 37 would establish state standards for instruction in media arts, which uses new technologies for creative expression, communication, and design.


Current law authorizes state content standards in four subjects in the Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA): visual arts, dance, theatre, and music. These standards were adopted in 2001 and are due to be revised by 2019.

In the years since the adoption of the VAPA standards, dramatic changes in technology have enabled new forms of creative expression. Technology-based art for creative expression, communication, and design is known as media arts, and demand for media arts education is growing rapidly.

Media arts instruction may engage students in artistic projects such as including video production, sound design, game design, online and mobile media design, multimedia live production, to virtual and augmented reality design.

Media arts education allows students to learn key artistic and employment skills in our increasingly technology-centered world. These skills are of particular use in and California’s creative economy.

Like other forms of art education, media arts can be used to teach and reinforce core academic content, as well as creative problem-solving, effective communication, team collaboration, and critical thinking. Students studying media arts gain critical literacies in media, technology and digital culture essential to becoming informed, discerning and engaged citizens. Media arts education also empowers students to engage in self-directed forms of inquiry, expression and creativity.

In recognition that media arts education is a specialized field of instruction which requires distinct standards, the 2014 National Core Arts Standards, produced by art education experts and practitioners, includes media arts standards as distinct subject.

California, the world leader in technology and innovation, needs standards in media arts in order to support and promote this important subject matter.


AB 37 establishes California’s first set of stand-alone media arts standards as a VAPA subject. This bill:

  • Authorizes the Superintendent of Public Instruction, in consultation with the Instructional Quality Commission and experts in arts education, to recommend media arts standards to the State Board of Education for their adoption by January 31, 2019.
  • Requires that the National Core Arts Standards in media arts serve as the basis for new media arts standards.
  • Authorizes media arts to be included in the next VAPA curriculum framework and instructional materials adoption.

Sponsor and Contact

Sponsor: State Supt. of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson

Sue Vang, CDE Governmental Relations
(916) 445-4291, svang@cde.ca.gov

Tanya Lieberman, Assembly Education Committee
(916) 319-2087, tanya.lieberman@asm.ca.gov

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