Art History Link-Up to offer more Art History programmes for young people

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Art History Link-Up's (AHLU) programme for the academic year 2024/25 will be shaped by partnerships with The Courtauld and Waddesdon Manor, allowing the charity to expand its reach to younger students while continuing to offer Art History A Level and EPQ courses to state school children.

Working with The Courtauld for a third year, AHLU will offer students the opportunity to study A Level Art History or an EPQ (Extended Project Qualification) free-of-charge at The Courtauld and online on Saturdays during term time. Applications are now open (https://arthistorylinkup.org/apply/student-application/) for state school students to join for the academic year 2024/25. The course will be based at the Leon Kossoff Learning Centre in Somerset House and students will benefit from the ability to draw on The Courtauld’s exceptional collection of art and the high standards of in-person teaching that AHLU offer. There is also an option for hybrid learning, enabling students from across the UK to take part.

Working with Waddesdon Manor and the Rothschild Collection, AHLU is piloting courses for younger students to experience art history. This includes free holiday courses for local state school students and introduction courses at state schools in the Waddesdon, Buckinghamshire area, and elsewhere. This important work is helping to shape programmes for younger pupils in KS4 (GCSE), introducing them to Art History at an earlier point in their education.

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Art History Link-Up is committed to securing the future of Art History by providing free art history programmes for state school students. Currently fewer than 1% of state schools offer Art History A Level. The charity believes that art history is an important and beneficial subject which can lead to rewarding careers and should be more readily available to young people in the UK.

Art History Link-Up. Photographer Ed HandsArt History Link-Up. Photographer Ed Hands
Art History Link-Up. Photographer Ed Hands

By offering art history courses the charity offers life-changing opportunities for students while increasing and diversifying the number of students passionate about the subject. Since launching in 2016, AHLU has worked with over 500 young people from 300 schools across the UK, many of whom have gone on to study Art History at university. Currently there are seven alumni studying Art History at the University of Cambridge. In 2022/23, 48% of students were from an ethnic minority background, 32% from widening participation backgrounds, and over 10% had additional learning challenges. At a time when the arts sector wants to diversify its workforce, AHLU is working hard to broaden inclusion. The programme also supports students in gaining a wider awareness and understanding of the art world, providing various opportunities such as careers seminars, work experience and placements within the art world. Past placements including Art UK, Christie’s, Inigo, and the Royal Collection.

Rose Aidin, Founder and Chief Executive of Art History Link-Up: ‘We are delighted to be working with The Courtauld and Waddesdon Manor and to benefit from their support, their space and their amazing collections. Our students take pleasure in learning, observing great art and the cross-curricular connections made on our courses, with many going on to further study and work in the field of art history. At a challenging time for arts subjects, we are all committed to ensuring there is a future for art history and that the future is inclusive.’

Dame Hannah Rothschild DBE, Chair of The Rothschild Foundation, “The Rothschild Foundation is thrilled to be partnering with Art History Link-Up to increase access to Art History, with courses introducing younger secondary school-age students to Waddesdon Manor’s history and collection. Art History is a relevant and multi-disciplinary subject which opens so many doors for those who study it and we believe, like Art History Link-Up, that it should be more widely available to young people. We have proudly worked with Art History Link-Up since 2016: many of our current and future academics, curators, thinkers and practitioners are and will be alumni of their programmes’.

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Professor Mark Hallett, Director, The Courtauld: ‘The Courtauld is delighted to be partnering with Art History Link-Up for a third consecutive year, by offering teaching space, support and access to the Courtauld’s world-class collection. Increasing access to Art History is a priority for us all and we are proud to be associated with Art History Link-Up’s free-of-charge Art History A Level and Extended Project Qualification courses for state-sponsored students.’

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