5. Arts and cultural education
Last update: March, 2020
At the federal level, the main governmental responsibility for art and cultural education lies with three ministries: the Federal Ministry of Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth, the Federal Government Commissioner for Cultural and Media Affairs and the Federal Ministry of Education and Research.
The Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth began implementing its National Youth Strategy Taking action for a youth-appropriate society in 2011. The area of cultural education in particular advanced into the field of inclusion of non-formal education and cooperation with formal education. In addition to an innovation fund for cultural education within the so-called Independent Youth Policy, the Ministry contributed approximately 8.5 million EUR in 2012 to improve the federal infrastructure and further education in schools and vocational training within the framework of cultural policy practice. In December 2019, the Federal Government adopted the Youth Strategy, which was developed with the participation of all federal ministries concerned with youth issues. It identifies interdepartmental youth policy needs for action and 161 new or further developed measures to address them. With this inter-ministerial coordinated agenda, the Federal Government intends to gear its actions in future more closely to the views and needs of young people.In 2013, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) launched the Federal Government's largest funding programme for cultural education to date. The aim of the Kultur macht stark programme is to promote extracurricular educational opportunities for disadvantaged children and young people aged 3 to 18. In order to give them good educational opportunities and enable them to participate in society, the BMBF has been supporting local alliances for education in the implementation of extracurricular cultural education projects since 2013. Funding began in 2013 and extended in the first phase until 2017, the second project phase started in 2018 and will run until 2022. The BMBF will provide funds of up to 430 million EUR until the end of the project.
The BMBF is also funding another project, which has been implemented by the German Cultural Council since 2012: the Dialogue Platform for Cultural Education. It consists of an Internet portal Kultur bilden, a newspaper supplement Kultur bilden and dialogue forums.
In the current cultural policy debate, the view is gaining ground that cultural education for children and young people must be strengthened both inside and outside of school. The Enquete Commission Culture in Germany of the German Bundestag, for example, has placed this topic at the top of its agenda. Initiatives worth mentioning here are:
- In spring 2007, a programme titled An Instrument for Every Child (Jedem Kind ein Instrument – JeKi) was initiated in the Ruhr Area by the Federal Cultural Foundation, the state of North Rhine-Westphalia and the Zukunftsstiftung Bildung (Future Foundation for Education) with the participation of the Ruhr Area municipalities, private sponsors and participating families as a cooperation project of the Capital of Culture RUHR.2010. Every primary school child in the Ruhr Area should have the opportunity to learn a musical instrument of its own choice. The focus is on the children making music together – from the first to the fourth grade. The costs of around 35 million EUR are borne by the Federal Cultural Foundation, the state of North Rhine-Westphalia and private sponsors, as well as a small contribution from parents. After the four-year introductory phase, the Federal Cultural Foundation and the Zukunftsstiftung Bildung withdrew their funding for the programme as planned. From the 2011/12 school year onwards, the state of North Rhine-Westphalia assumed sole sponsorship with approximately 8.7 million EUR annually. In the 2014/15 school year, around 40 municipalities, 50 music schools, 576 primary schools, 25 special schools with around 60,000 children took part in the JeKi programme. In order to make it possible for all communities in NRW to participate in the programme, it has been launched with a new concept under the name JeKits - Instruments, Dancing, Singing for Every Child in NRW from the 2015/16 school year.
- The youth culture and youth education initiative entitled Children to Olympus of the Cultural Foundation of the Federal States in cooperation with private sponsors. The concept is currently being revised; new event and funding formats will be announced in early 2020.
- Some federal states also have specific programmes such as Culture and School. This state programme, which was launched in 2006, aims to strengthen artistic-cultural education in schools through additional projects.
- The initiatives for the promotion of child and youth culture of the cities of Munich and Hamburg.
- Since 2009, the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media has awarded an annual prize for cultural education worth EUR 60,000.
In order to present examples of good practice and cooperation between cultural education institutions and schools, the Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth and the Federal Association for Cultural Education for Children and Youth founded a competition called Mixed Up!. Since 2005, prizes have been awarded annually.
With the school year 2011/12, a new programme called Cultural Agents for Creative Schools was launched in 5 countries (North Rhine-Westphalia, Berlin, Hamburg, Baden-Württemberg, Thuringia) at 138 schools with the aim of inspiring children and young people for art and culture in the long term and thus promoting their personal development. It is a model program of the non-profit forum K&B GmbH, initiated and supported by the German Federal Cultural Foundation and Stiftung Mercator in cooperation with the responsible state ministries and other partners. Even after the end of the funding by the two foundations, there will still be cultural agents in the participating states
In 2012, the 4th Education Report was presented, this time with the main topic Cultural Education or Cultural / Musical-Aesthetic Education in the Life Course. As a result of this focus, the topic of Cultural Education has been brought more into focus than before. However, it is also pointed out that there is an unsatisfactory data situation for cultural education – by using the different datas of sector associations with different surveys or survey methods.
The Council for Cultural Education was founded in 2012. It is an independent advisory body that deals with the quality of cultural education in Germany. It has eleven members representing different areas of arts education: dance and theatre education, music and literature education, educational research, educational science, pedagogy, political education, media education, sociology, cultural education and the arts. The Council for Cultural Education is an initiative of various foundations in Germany. It publishes annual memoirs and studies, such as Jugend / YouTube / Kulturelle Bildung. Horizont 2019 – a study of 12 to 19-year-olds on the use of cultural education opportunities at digital cultural venues, and Libraries / Digitization / Cultural Education. Horizont 2018 – on the impact of digitisation in libraries, on cultural education in all-day schools.
The Council for Socio-Culture and Cultural Education brings together key players: 25 associations and institutions of cultural education, such as the Federal Association for Cultural Youth Education, the Federal Association of Youth Art Schools and Cultural Education Institutions, the Federal Association of Museum Education, the Federal Association of Socio-Cultural Centres, the Federal Academy for Cultural Education Wolfenbüttel and the Academy of Cultural Education Remscheid.
Since 2009, the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media has awarded an annual prize for cultural education worth EUR 60,000.
Last update: March, 2020
Art, music, literature and music education are components of school education and fall within the responsibility of the federal states (Länder), which organise them differently in terms of scope and quality.
In the 2017/2018 school year, 595,000 students were enrolled in artistic subjects such as music, art, literature or similar subjects in the qualification phases I and II of the upper secondary school system at general schools throughout Germany. In relation to the number of pupils, the indicator value for Germany was 1.0, meaning that on average every pupil took a course in an artistic subject. In this connection, the federal states had very different values: from 0.7 to 1.5, which can also be explained by the different school ordinances and laws in the individual states.
Figures on the type and scope of artistic
subjects in primary and secondary schools up to grade level are published in
the Education Report 2012 with the focus on Cultural Education. According to
these figures, the number of hours per week for compulsory artistic subjects in
the federal states is between 12 and 24, for lower secondary level I at
secondary modern school (Hauptschule) between 11 and 26, at secondary modern
school (Realschule) between 13 and 22 and at grammar school (Gymnasium) between
6 and 20 hours.
 Autorengruppe Bildungsberichterstattung(2012): Bildung in Deutschland 2012. Ein indikatorengestützter Bericht mit einer Analyse zur kulturellen Bildung im Lebenslauf, Bielefeld: Bertelsmann Verlag.
Last update: March, 2020
Higher education in Germany consists mainly of three types of institutions with the following courses of study:
Art and music colleges:
- Study programmes in the fields of design, fine and performing arts and in film, television and media and various music fields;
- Study programmes for cultural management;
- Some teach the whole spectrum of artistic subjects, others only certain disciplines.
- Courses of study in theoretical disciplines (e.g. art history or cultural studies);
- Study courses in the arts or music education (e.g. to become a primary or secondary school teacher);
- Courses of study for cultural management, cultural anthropology.
Universities of Applied Sciences:
- Courses of study in cultural work, cultural education, cultural mediation, cultural tourism.
Over the past 30 years, the range of courses of study in the field of culture has grown very rapidly. In order to give an overview of the variety of study programmes in the field of culture, especially in terms of cultural mediation, offered at universities, universities of applied sciences and academies of art and music, the Institute for Cultural Policy within the Association for Cultural Policy has conducted a research project on the topic Study - Labour Market - Culture. One of the results is an online database with profiles of more than 300 courses of study in cultural representation and promotion (e.g. cultural education, cultural management, cultural tourism, etc.).
Data on study programmes are only available for the subject group Arts
and Art Studies. In 2017, a total of 94,300 students are studying in this
subject group. Of the graduates, 3.6 % were assigned to this subject group
(=11,100 students) in 2017. The overall proportion of women in this subject
group was 65.2%.
 Blumenreich, Ulrike (2012): Studium – Arbeitsmarkt – Kultur. Ergebnisse eines Forschungsprojektes, Bonn / Essen: Kulturpolitische Gesellschaft / Klartext Verlag.
Last update: March, 2020
In Germany, there are independent extracurricular institutions and offers of cultural (youth) education (e.g. music schools, youth art schools, interdisciplinary cultural workshops, media centres), which are partly publicly funded, partly privately or with mixed funding. These out-of-school cultural education and cultural pedagogy programmes are gaining in importance and increasing in quality and scope. New concepts and institutions, which increasingly combine classical cultural education with the use of new media, have been established primarily by non-governmental institutions with the support of the public sector. The promotion of cultural education for children and young people has received a significant boost since this task was enshrined in § 11 of the Child and Youth Services Act (1991).
The Federal Association for Cultural Child and Youth Education (Bundesvereinigung Kulturelle Kinder- und Jugendbildung BKJ e. V.) is the umbrella organisation for cultural education in Germany. More than 50 nationwide specialist organisations and state associations have joined together in the BKJ. Various umbrella and professional associations exist in Germany for the various institutions: the Association of German Music Schools with its 16 federal state associations is the municipal professional and sponsoring association of the approximately 930 public music schools in Germany; and 340 independent music schools have joined together in the Federal Association of Independent Music Schools. The Federal Association of Youth Art Schools and Cultural Pedagogical Institutions (bjke) has represented 400 youth art schools and cultural educational institutions nationwide since 1983 through its regional working groups and regional associations.
Statistical data are available for the music schools and adult education centres. In 2017, 1.5 million pupils were taught at 930 public music schools in Germany. The majority (85 %) of them were under 19 years of age at that time. In relation to the population of the same age, the proportion of students at public music schools up to 19 years of age was 8.6% nationwide. In its annual statistics for 2016, the Federal Association of Independent Music Schools assumes a projected 158,000 music students at 340 member schools. At 883 out of 895 adult education centres in Germany, a total of 830,000 course bookings in the programme area Culture and Design were counted for the year 2017. This corresponds to 12.9 % of all course bookings.
Last update: March, 2020
In 2017, the vocational training statistics
counted a total of 1.3 million trainees. A culture-specific occupation is
learned by 26,000 people, which represents 2% of all trainees. The five most
common culturally relevant occupational groups were: technical media design
(7,700 trainees), event, camera and sound technology (4,900 trainees), event
service and management (4,500 trainees), publishing and media industry (2,400
trainees) and arts and crafts media design (1,600 trainees).