ArtLab, created by Tina O'Connell, WP officer Art is a dedicated art and technology facility whose exclusive agenda is to support Outreach and Widening Participation, and to share knowledge and experience in order to provide a focus for other department’s initiatives in this area.

Department: Art

Supervised by: Dr Kate Allen

The Placement Project

You will be working with researchers from the multidisciplinary AHRC Sensory Objects research project and the Widening Participation scheme in collaborative research projects with local primary, secondary schools and colleges including Reading College, charities such as Reading Mencap, and the ICA London. This placement gives you the opportunity to develop hands on workshop ideas devising practical project-based learning activities around art and technology, experimenting with the newly obtained equipment in the ArtLab such as littleBits kits, the 3Dprinter, laser cutter and Ardunio electronics, exploring cross disciplinary themes. You will be part of a research team holding workshops within and outside of the University with the aim of widening access and improving participation in higher education. You will also be contributing to the new ArtLab website, participating in the facilitation, documentation and recording of the workshops. What improvements to inclusion can be made through developing multidisciplinary hands on workshops to encourage greater engagement and access to Higher Education and Museums and Galleries, for people from disadvantaged backgrounds and with disabilities?


You will be involved in all aspects of the ArtLab, particularly contributing your ideas and experiments for hands on workshops, documenting and contributing to the ArtLab webpage. Learning how to use the ArtLab equipment 20%, planning, idea development and preparation for workshops 20%, facilitating at practical workshops 20%, documenting, photographing and recording information 30%; contributing to the website and to co-written papers 10%.

Skills, knowledge and experience required

We are looking for a confident, inventive art student who possibly has experience working with schools and community groups. You need to be practical, flexible and be able to work with others while being able to initiate your own work. You need to be digitally literate for example able to add entries on to the project blog and keen to learn for example about electronics. An interest in, sculpture, video making, interactivity, participatory art or electronics would be an advantage. You will need to have an Enhanced DBS check which will be arranged through the University.

Skills which will be developed during the placement

This project will allow you to work with the ArtLab tools including the 3D printer, laser cutter, Arduino and littleBits electronics kits, to build on your experience and artwork through investigating the potential of the ArtLab equipment for workshop purposes. You will develop your workshop planning skills; work in a team as well as independently, using your own initiative. You will gain valuable experience in all aspects of undertaking a research project from experimenting, planning and facilitating workshops to the development of further ArtLab research activities. The project will provide you with valuable insights into employability skills and career prospects within the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, including developing participatory art workshops, working with people, responding to multidisciplinary themes, and developing your skills of documentation, reflection, writing and recording information. You will be given an induction and guidance about working with groups of vulnerable people.

Place of Work

Art Lab in the Art Department, Local Primary and Secondary schools, The ICA, Reading College, Tower Project London.

Hours of Work

35 hours/week for six weeks; Part-Time equivalent one day a week over the Summer and Autumn term 2015 (start date to be agreed)

Approximate Start and End Dates (not fixed)

Wednesday 15 July 2015 - Friday 25 September 2015

How to Apply

Please apply by email to Kate Allen ( including a CV, up to five images of your artwork and covering letter by 17th April.

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