Course Title: Art, Music and the Brain

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Art, Music and the Brain

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


340H Art


Sem 2 2017

Course Coordinator: Kristen Sharp

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 2412

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Availability: By appointment

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

HUSO2186 Art History and Theory 1
HUSO2213 Art History & Theory 2

Course Description

In this course you will explore how art and music relate to sensory perception and the brain. Class discussion will focus on concepts from philosophy, neuroscience, cultural theory and popular culture in relation to art and music. You will consider how artists and musicians create works that engage with optical experiments, sonic investigations and spatial interventions. The aim of this course is to critically analyse how the brain works as a resource for understanding and creating artworks across traditional and emerging creative domains.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

Capability Development

In this course you will develop the following program capabilities:

  • Acquire knowledge of creative practice and theory and their applications to fine art
  • Critically examine global, social,cultural, environmental and historical knowledge


Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course you will be able to:

  • Discuss how art and music relate to sensory perception and the brain

  • Apply conceptions of the brain through informed critical analysis to art and music works and texts, including your own practice

  • Engage in independent research and use appropriate terminology in discussions and written presentations.

Overview of Learning Activities

In this course you will engage in a range of learning activities such as lectures, viewing and listening to examples, reading texts, critical and analytical thinking, group discussions and/or on-line forums, research, essay-writing and class-presentations. In lectures and seminars you will examine and discuss a range of key ideas and practices from art, music and science. You will also be given the opportunity to reflect on how you have applied these concepts to your own art practice.

Overview of Learning Resources

RMIT University will provide you with a range of resources and tools to engage in this course. RMIT University’s online systems will also support your learning and you will have access to a wide range of online and hardcopy resources through RMIT University Library.

Supplementary notes, readings, slide lists and guides about essay writing and referencing will be posted on Blackboard. A course bibliography will be distributed with a list of recommended readings.

Overview of Assessment

You will be assessed on how well you meet the learning outcomes in this course and on your development against the program capabilities. Feedback will be given on all assessment tasks and staff members are available for individual consultation. 

If you have a long term medical condition and/or disability it may be possible to negotiate to vary aspects of the learning or assessment methods. 

Equitable Learning Services:

Equitable Learning Services (ELS) provides support and equal opportunities for students with a disability, long-term illness and/or mental health condition and primary carers of individuals with a disability. You can contact the ELS if you would like to find out more:

An assessment charter summarises your responsibilities as an RMIT student as well as those of your lecturers.

Your course assessment conforms to RMIT assessment principles, regulations, policies and procedures which are described and referenced in a single document.