Critical Theory and Critical Pedagogy

Critical Theory and Critical Pedagogy

Photo by Headway on Unsplash

For Week 6 of our Psychology and Sociology class, we discussed the topics of Critical Theory and Critical Pedagogy. Critical Theory “is the reflective assessment and critique of society and culture by applying knowledge from the social sciences and the humanities” (Wikipedia). It draws on the works of Karl Marx, Sigmund Freud, and the Frankfurt School of social theory. Critical Pedagogy applies critical theory to education, and began with Paulo Freire’s book, Pedagogy of the Oppressed. For this week, we had to choose between reading Freire’s Pedagogy of the Oppressed or Michael Apple’s Official Knowledge: Democratic Education in a Conservative Age. We were also assigned a few journal articles, a reading response, and a paper.

Read More

Race, Ethnicity, and Gender

Race, Ethnicity, and Gender

Photo by Brittani Burns on Unsplash

Week 5 of my Psychology and Sociology in Music Education class focused on issues of race, ethnicity, and gender in music education. Similar to my thoughts on motivation and identity limiting participation in music in secondary schools from last week, there are issues related to race, ethnicity, and gender that prevent students from participating in music. Our readings were divided into two groups: race & ethnicity and gender. We also had a Live Classroom in addition to our weekly Reading Response.

Read More

Identity, Community, and Music Making

Identity, Community, and Music Making

Photo by Alex Iby on Unsplash

This post started out much differently than it looks now. I began writing something that would look more like Week 1, Week 2, or Week 3 of my Psychology and Sociology in Music Education class, but as I kept reading and writing, I wanted to be able to tell you more about what I was thinking and less within the confines of the reading response and the paper. I’ll leave you with some of that first, traditional draft, but then transition to something that better fits what I wanted to write.

Week 4 began looking at education and music education through a sociological lens. This week we specifically looked at identity, community, and music making. We dove into another of our main texts, Sociology for Music Teachers: Practical Applications. then looked at Identity, Music, Schools, and Community. We also had a reading response and a paper due this week.

Read More

Motivation and Creativity

Motivation and Creativity

Photo by Samuel Zeller on Unsplash

Week 3 of our Psychology and Sociology in Music Education course looked at the concepts of motivation and creativity. We had another slough of readings (from which I learned a great deal!) with a required reading response as well as our second Live Classroom. I’ll discuss a bit of my learning and the implications from the reading in the post below.

Read More

Musical Development

Musical Development

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

For the second week of our Psychology and Sociology in Music Education course, we looked at how the theories we discussed in Week 1 can be applied specifically in music. The readings and lectures sought to address three important questions:

  1. How can we apply developmental theories to music teaching and learning?

  2. What is intelligence? What is talent?

  3. How does an individual's musical ability develop? What is ability? Can we measure ability? What about achievement?

Read More

Psychological Theories in Education

Psychological Theories in Education

Photo by The Roaming Platypus on Unsplash

For Week 1 of Psychology and Sociology in Music Education: Perspectives and Applications, we began reading several chapters from Developmental and Educational Psychology for Teachers: An Applied Approach. These chapters gave us a broad overview of the text; psychological research; theories of cognitive development from Piaget, Vygotsky, and Bruner; and theories of personal and social development from Freud, Erickson, Rogers, Maslow, and Marcia. We also had our first Live Classroom, and we were required to write a response to our readings.

Read More

Psychology and Sociology in Music Education: Perspectives and Applications

Psychology and Sociology in Music Education: Perspectives and Applications

Photo by Hal Gatewood on Unsplash

Today is the first day of the Spring I 2019 term of my doctoral program, and I am beginning a class entitled Psychology and Sociology in Music Education: Perspectives and Applications with Dr. Ronald Kos. I am especially interested after doing some preliminary reading and having conversations about cognitive load theory with my friend and colleague, Nick Covington. It looks like I’m going to have a lot of reading to do these next seven weeks!

Read More

Boston University's Online Doctor of Musical Arts in Music Education

Boston University's Online Doctor of Musical Arts in Music Education

This year, I began Boston University’s online program for a Doctor of Musical Arts in Music Education. This came as a result of our move to Virginia for my wife’s position as an Assistant Professor of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering at the University of Virginia. I previously taught for 5 years at Centennial High School in Ankeny, Iowa and 3 years at West High School in Waterloo, Iowa. I hold a Bachelors of Music Education from Iowa State University and a Masters of Music Education from VanderCook College of Music. When we first moved to Virginia in June, there were not any music education positions near the Charlottesville area. The University of Virginia was not able to offer me any positions due to my not holding a doctoral degree. I began thinking, what else would I like to do besides teach high school band? I think I would like to work with future music educators.

Read More

2018 in Review

2018 in Review

Photo by Steven VanDesande Jr on Unsplash

This was a hell of a year for my wife and I! Chloe and I started a new adventure in Virginia: buying a house, starting a tenure track position in Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering at the University of Virginia, going back to substitute teaching, and beginning a DMA in Music Education through Boston University! This post is a look back at what I wrote on the blog in 2018 as well as a reflection on my own learning and experiences over the year.

Read More

Research Traditions Overview

Research Traditions Overview

Photo by Thomas Kelley on Unsplash

The final unit for our Introduction to Music Education Research course asks us to consider six different studies related to our Unit 2 Research Proposal to build an annotated bibliography and a critique. In some of the course modules, it seems there is some ambiguity in regards to the order of assignments in previous versions of this course. In a previous year, the annotated bibliography and critique may have occurred before the research proposal. Regardless, this unit is framed within the context of The Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA, 1965), its most recent revisions more commonly known as No Child Left Behind (NCLB, 2001) and the Every Student Succeeds Acts (ESSA, 2015), and what our professors are calling the research ecosystem.

Read More

Maker-Centered Music

Maker-Centered Music

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

For Unit 2 (November 13-26) of our Introduction to Music Education Research course, we designed an introduction to a music education research study we might want to conduct. This developed out of the process outlined in The Craft of Research, an excellent book on conducting and writing about research. Where the texts from Unit 1 (A Rulebook for Arguments and Zen in the Art of Writing) laid out structures for supporting a conclusion and provided inspiration for writing in an engaging way, The Craft of Research guides the reader through the process of selecting a research topic, developing research questions, discovering sources to help answer those questions, and much more. Unit 2 only covers the first six chapters of the text, as we are only proposing a study, not actually conducting research.

Read More

Argument

Argument

Photo by Jonathan Harrison on Unsplash

For my Fall II 2018 course in my doctoral program, I am taking Introduction to Music Education Research. For our first unit, we looked at the structure of good argument. Specifically, we were asked to read two books (A Rulebook for Arguments and Zen and the Art of Writing) and two journal articles (Performance Stress and the Very Young Musician and “Knowing Their World”: Urban Choral Music Educators’ Knowledge of Context). Our assignment over this two week period was to analyze the “Knowing Their World” article in the context of the rules put forth in A Rulebook for Arguments. The online modules provided a sample analysis of the Performance Stress article, and our professor paired us up to exchange rough drafts of our analyses. Here is the prompt:

Read More

Introduction to Music Education Research

Introduction to Music Education Research

Photo by Gaelle Marcel on Unsplash

Yesterday (Tuesday, October 30), was the first day of my second doctoral course, Introduction to Music Education Research. Unlike my previous course, Foundations of Music Education I: Philosophy and History, this course is structured in three broad units that each have a project to complete by a certain deadline. FME1 had a set of readings and discussions due each week with Live Classrooms and papers sprinkled throughout the term. This blog post will serve as an overview of the course.

Read More

Putting It All Together and Moving Forward

Putting It All Together and Moving Forward

Photo by Anna Utochkina on Unsplash

For our final week of this course, our articles focused on the changes music education scholars believe we need to see moving forward. Our discussion board also focused around the idea of changes we believe need to happen in music education. Finally, we also had to complete a paper, which I will post separately, analyzing our current teaching practices in light of what we have learned in this course.

Read More

Ethics and Music Education

Ethics and Music Education

Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash.

When I first read the title for this week, I thought we would be continuing down the path of Week 4 and Week 5 with social justice issues. Instead, we looked more at the “why” of music education. Why do we teach the things we do? Why do we teach in the ways that we do? How might the what and how we teach be excluding other students? There were points raised in some of our early readings this week (Jorgensen and Mantie & Tucker) that really resonated with me, but left me with some unresolved internal conflicts about my own philosophies of music education. Both of Regelski’s articles helped to clarify some of my thinking around those points, which you can read about below.

Read More

Music Education Topics that Need our Attention Now!

Music Education Topics that Need our Attention Now!

Photo by Joel & Jasmin Førestbird on Unsplash

An alternate title for this week’s content could have been: Music Education and Social Justice: Equity and Diversity, as one of our modules was titled. Our readings centered around the intersection of music education and topics of social justice like sexual orientation and women in music. A particular quote from our professor really resonated with me, “Perhaps the fundamental question you must ask yourself is if the teaching of music is about music or about people.” I’ve had colleagues share similar sentiments about the extramusical effects of music education: teaching students “how to human.”

Read More

Music Education and Social Justice: Equity and Diversity

Music Education and Social Justice: Equity and Diversity

Photo by Subhakant Mishra on Unsplash.

This past week was tough, not only because we had family here for part of it and I got sick, but because of the reading. We were asked to read Jonathan Kozol’s Savage Inequalities and find two additional articles about music education that follow the same line of inquiry as Kozol. I read a dissertation on the California Music Project Teacher Training Program and an article from School Band & Orchestra about Dealing with Inequality in Your District. Most of this post will be focused on the content of those readings with a little bit of the weekly discussion at the end.

Read More

Analysis of the Teaching of Music Fundamentals

Analysis of the Teaching of Music Fundamentals

Photo by Elijah O'Donell on Unsplash.

For our Foundations of Music Education I: Philosophy and History course, we have to write three papers. Because I am currently procrastinating doing my reading for this week, I’ll share a bit about my paper with you. The prompt was as follows:

Read More