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A conceptual model for literature -based musical education

Jerry Louis Jaccard, University of Massachusetts Amherst

Abstract

This study sets forth a procedural model for general music education which is intuitive, principle-driven, learner-centered, co-constructed and literature-based in contrast to any pre-designed method, yet encompasses the teaching traditions of Dalcroze, Kodaly, Orff, and Willems, among others. The model is constructed according to fundamental principles of the acquisition of musicality discovered or elaborated by selected scholars from musical and related disciplines. These principles focus on how the teacher and the learner may interact with music as a body of literature for optimum musical learning in purposeful yet flexible ways.^ This search for undergirding principles is driven by several questions arising from observations of musical teaching and learning experiences. These questions may be grouped into the following categories: (1) Potential relationships of music to other subjects in the curriculum; (2) Notions of talent, aptitude and intuition in the development of general musicianship; (3) Underlying cognitive processes by which musicality is developed in learners; (4) The nature of musical meaning, how it is constructed by the learner, and how teaching should facilitate this construction; and, (5) Issues of conceptualizing and organizing music as a body of literature in order to enable efficient construction of meaning.^ Data undergirding this study were gathered primarily through comparative analyses of key writings and musical compositions or collections, qualitative interviews of music pedagogues, and exploratory studies. These data were triangulated, then cross-compared to parallel issues in other disciplines, especially cognitive psychology and language literacy acquisition.^ The resulting interpretation of this information suggests that music is co-equal with other subjects, a position which implies redefining the place of music in the general school curriculum. Further, all learners are capable of some degree of musical acquisition, regardless of native talent. Additionally, learners become musical through three interdependent operations: Expressive/Experiential, Aural and Literate. The deployment of these musical operations is overarched by an artistic supra-mental intuition which can be greatly cultivated by the use of carefully organized musical literature of high quality. Musical operations are especially facilitated through observance of principles of aural and visual predictability applied to musical literature. ^

Subject Area

Music education|Reading instruction|Developmental psychology

Recommended Citation

Jaccard, Jerry Louis, "A conceptual model for literature -based musical education" (1995). Doctoral Dissertations Available from Proquest. AAI9606520.
http://scholarworks.umass.edu/dissertations/AAI9606520

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