A Performing Arts Project as Authentic Learning

Facilitating the development of confident, knowledgeable and skilled music teachers who understand the expectations of their future teaching role is a challenge for pre-service teacher courses. The teacher-researchers, who are music method lecturers in an Australian Initial Teacher Education (ITE) course, developed an authentic artistic student-led project as an assessment task for their students. Students were tasked with the challenge of developing an original musical production underpinned by a current educational issue. The limitations imposed reflected many primary and secondary school situations such as minimal resources, no financial backing and a requirement for all students to take on multiple responsibilities. As the student-participants shared the leadership roles, they all had to both ‘lead’ and ‘be led’ by, their fellow students. The resulting interplay of participant roles from student to teacher throughout the production process, and the knowledge and skills these participants developed, were explored by the researchers. Data were collected via three focus groups and six semi-structured individual interviews conducted with the music students. The overarching theme derived from the data was the authenticity of the participants’ experience and the way they were able to transfer the knowledge, skills and understanding gained about the roles of music education student and teacher into an imagined school context. This research will inform the researcher’s future planning for the artistic student-led project to ensure that it is effectively developing music teachers who have a good understanding of their role as the music teacher upon graduation.

Authentic Learning, Initial Teacher Education, Music Education, Teacher Role

Arts Education

Paper Presentation in a Themed Session

  • Dr. Louise Jenkins
    • Australia Australia
    • Louise Jenkins is a senior lecturer in the Faculty of Education at Monash University, Australia. As a sociologist and a performing arts practitioner, Louise's particular focus is on the development of music and drama as tools to support social inclusion for culturally diverse schools. Louise uses blended learning and team teaching to frame her approach to teaching and this is underpinned by pedagogy which reconsiders the role of the teacher and the student in the classroom to facilitate student-centred learning.
  • Dr. Renee Crawford
    • Dr, Faculty of Education, Monash University, Australia Victoria, Australia
    • Dr Renée Crawford is a Senior Lecturer and Associate Director for Graduate Research in the Faculty of Education at Monash University. She is also a Research and Evaluation Consultant. Her diverse reserach includes the philosophy, impact and pedagogy of using technology in education and music education; holistic and authentic teaching and learning practice; blended learning; tecahing and learning models; curriculum development and analysis; composition in the classroom; the impact of the Arts and Music engagement in education from a sociological and intervention perspective; the role of the teaching artist in contemporary education. Renée had the privilege of managing and conducting research on high profile national research projects that responded to government agenda priorities. This work was done in collaboration with institutions such as The University of Melbourne, Victoria University, Australian Council of Education Research and Educational Transformations. The significant impacts of such projects has resulted in a deeper understanding about the importance of teacher led research and how the outcomes can change policy and practice. Her musical interests that continue to influence her teaching are in composition, film music, minimalism, the analysis of contemporary Australian music and the use of digital technology in music.