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What is Arts & Communications?

Arts and Communication (A&C), The A&C pathway focuses on careers in designing, producing, exhibiting, performing, writing, and publishing multimedia content including visual and performing arts and design, journalism, and entertainment services. Careers in the A&C require a creative aptitude, background in computer and electronic-based technology applications, academic foundations in mathematics and science, and proficiency in oral and written communication.

Source: Adapted from

Occupational Outlook Handbook


At minimum, Illinois A&C focuses on the following areas:

  • A/V Technology & Film Career Pathway
  • Printing Technology Career Pathway
  • Visual Arts Career Pathway
  • Performing Arts Career Pathway*
  • Journalism & Broadcasting Career Pathway
  • Telecommunications Career Pathway

*Usually not associated with CTE courses

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For more information about ILCTE, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Project Director. To be added to our communications list, please fill out the contact information. Additionally, please connect with us on FacebookTwitter, and YouTube.

ILCTE Innovative Lessons

Career Clusters


Arts, A/V Technology & Communications

This Career Cluster® is focused on designing, producing, exhibiting, performing, writing, and publishing multimedia content including visual and performing arts and design, journalism and entertainment services.

Business Management and Administration

This Career Cluster® is focused on careers in planning, organizing, directing and evaluating business functions essential to efficient and productive business operations.

Education and Training

This Career Cluster® is focused on planning, managing and providing education and training services, and related learning support services.

Information Technology

This Career Cluster® is focused on building linkages in information technology occupations for entry level, technical and professional careers related to the design, development, support and management of hardware, software, multimedia and systems integration services.


This Career Cluster® is focused on planning, managing and performing marketing activities to reach organizational objectives.

Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics

This Career Cluster® is focused on planning, managing and providing scientific research and professional and technical services (e.g., physical science, social science, engineering) including laboratory and testing services, and research and development services.

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PaCE Framework

Counselors, advisors, teachers and other educators can use the PaCE document to identify what types of experiences and information a student should have in order to make the most informed decisions about college and career planning. Organized from 8th through 12th grade, the Illinois PaCE Framework explains what students should be supported to do and what they should know at the end of each grade relative to three key domains: Career Exploration and Development; Postsecondary Education Exploration, Preparation, and Selection; and, Financial Aid and Literacy.


Diversity, Equity, and Special Populations  

Illinois has a commitment to provide every student the opportunity to be supported by highly effective teachers and school leaders. Further, Illinois understands that the two most important components for providing student learning are effective teachers and school leaders. Therefore, Illinois is focusing on developing highly effective teachers and leaders who are prepared to work to meet the instructional needs of each child, including those who have special needs and/or are English Language/Bilingual learners whether they come from high-poverty schools or low-poverty schools. To meet the needs of its lowest performing schools, Illinois is focusing on preparing teachers and principals to focus on differentiated instruction, student learning, and school improvement. Ensuring that teachers and principals are highly prepared to work in high need schools (HNS) will help to reduce the inequity among schools. Additionally, providing induction, mentoring, and professional development programs that focus on instructional needs of children will further support student learning in HNS (Source:

Resources for Teachers:

What is a Program of Study?

According to the definition put forward in Perkins V, a program of study must, at minimum, be a coordinated, non-duplicative sequence of academic and technical content at the secondary and postsecondary level that:

  • Incorporates challenging, state-identified academic standards;
  • Addresses academic and technical knowledge, as well as employability skills;
  • Is aligned to the needs of industries in the state, region, Tribal community or local area;
  • Progresses in content specificity;
  • Has multiple entry and exit points that allow for credentialing; and
  • Culminates in the attainment of a recognized postsecondary credential.

Source: Course Matrix


Learning Standards

The Common Career Technical Core (CCTC) is a state-led initiative to establish a set of rigorous, high-quality standards for Career Technical Education (CTE). The standards have been informed by state and industry standards and developed by a diverse group of teachers, business and industry experts, administrators and researchers. Forty-two states, the District of Columbia and Palau participated in the development stage of the CCTC, which was coordinated by Advance CTE. The development of the CCTC was a multi-step process that incorporated input from approximately 3,500 individuals representing K-12 education, business and industry and higher education from across the nation.


For more information, please visit:

Career and Technical Organizations

Professional Organizations

Student Organizations:

State and National Associations

  • Graphic Communications Education Association (GCEA)
    is an association of educators in partnership with industry, dedicated to sharing theories, principles, techniques and processes relating to graphic communications and imaging technology. - GCEA website

  • Graphic Arts Teachers’ Association of Illinois - Region One (North Central)
    Members have the opportunity to share what has worked well for them and to expand their professional network through interaction with presenters, industry representatives, host educators, and fellow graphics educators. Teachers from a variety of graphics-related disciplines (Communication Technology, Graphic Communications, Web Design, Art, Graphic Design, Photography, Business, Marketing, and Yearbook advisors) are involved. This variety provided insight from a number of perspectives on every topic.
    Adapted from:

  • Illinois Art Education Association
    Art plays a significant and vital role in our culture, economy and the education of our children, it is the mission of the Illinois Art Education Association to provide leadership for the advancement of excellence in art education by:

    • Providing support, direction and advocacy for quality art education
    • Providing professional development for the pursuit of knowledge, skills and content in the making and teaching of art
    • Encouraging innovation, research and reform
    • Networking within the arts and with other organizations
    • Encouraging membership, leadership and efficiency of the organization’s operation.


  • National Art Education Association
    Members include elementary, middle, and high school visual arts educators; college and university professors; university students preparing to become art educators; researchers and scholars; teaching artists; administrators and supervisors; and art museum educators—as well as more than 54,000 students who are members of the National Art Honor Society. We represent members in all 50 states plus the District of Columbia, U.S. Possessions, most Canadian Provinces, U.S. military bases around the world, and 25 foreign countries. - NAEA website 

Online Learning Resources

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