Two graduating MA in Education students presented their research at the Postgraduate Research in Music Education Symposium, which took place on-line on the 29th of October 2021 and hosted by the Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance (London).


Mark Aitchison (Lecturer in Music Education, University of Reading)

‘A study into Musical Identity in Year 8 Students in England’

In this presentation, Mark explored the journey students take into developing a musical identity. Investigating their interpretation of a musician label, the impact of the learning environment on their musical metacognition, and the influence their self-efficacy had on their musician identity. The research was carried out mid-Pandemic, with access to music making being curtailed by government guidance and school risk assessments; the antithesis of music education. The research concluded that while students concurred that taking part in a musical activity warrants the label of musician, there is disparity when performing themselves. In the classroom, students perceived that they were learning to become musicians, not be musicians. As a result of the restrictions to music making, students were unable to explore music making beyond learning the procedural and technical demands of musical instruments. Discussions around music making, curtailed from practical application, prevented students from making the link that theory supports practice; it became an arbitrary learning task. From student responses, a music curriculum should be designed to build procedural and contextual complexity, rather than bounce from unit to unit, which often involves different musical styles, genres and instrumental techniques.


Jesher Edrei Perez

‘The Development of Music and Mother-Tongue Literacies through Integrated and Culturally Responsive Mother-Tongue Based Music Lessons’

In his presentation, Jesher explored the premise of integrating music and language learning through culturally responsive and mother-tongue based music lessons. His study was conducted as an online class-based project through two month-long implemented lessons and the gathering and analysis of quantitative and qualitative data. The participants were Grade 1 Ilocano learners from the Ilocos region of the Philippines. Lessons utilised the same local music materials from the previous project, but through a different set of forty-minute lessons whose activities were targeted at developing both language and music skills. Results show significant development in the music and mother-tongue skills of the learners and a positive response to their learning experiences. This study argues for the effectiveness of the approach of developing music and mother-tongue literacies through integrated and culturally responsive mother-tongue based music lessons

More recently, Jesher also delivered lesson demonstration via a webinar on the 19th to the 21st of November 2021. The webinar, titled ‘Singing in Mother-Tongues’ and hosted by the Philippine Society for Music Education (PSME) and the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA), featured creative teaching demonstration of collected folk music materials. Jesher took his initial and recent research-project approaches and shared them with fellow music and mother-tongue practitioners in their country as facilitated on real teaching scenarios, either face to face or online.