I had the privilege of participating in the 2017 Symposium on Music Teacher Education, “Imagine Possible Futures” presented by the Society for Music Teacher Education (SMTE) national conference which took place in Minneapolis on September 7-9. The theme of the conference challenged music teacher educators to examine the curriculum and the values that influence American music classrooms. Issues of equity, access and cultural sensitivity were raised in key note addresses. Of significant note was the notion that the use of “tradition” which typically refers to Western European Art Music, or even American Jazz, is not an inclusive reference as Mariachi traditions existed before a saxophone was invented. Presentations related to this theme included narratives of two music educators incorporating popular music in their university method courses. They shared the inhibitions of teaching unfamiliar music to be overcome as classically trained musicians, which would serve as a model for prospective teachers.
PRESERVICE MUSIC TEACHER PREPARATION
With the support of preservice music teacher preparation as the central purpose of this research conference, the title of my presentation was “Designing Learning for Preservice Music Teachers Using Multimedia Cases to Develop Pedagogical Content Knowledge.” The instructional design study in instrumental music teacher education serves to provide professional development in curriculum development and integration of media and technology for teacher educators. The presentation was proposed and accepted for the Music Teacher Educators: Identification, Preparation, and Professional Development division. Here is a short description of the session:
The purpose of this instructional design study was to help preservice music teachers gain pedagogical content knowledge through case-based learning. Multimedia cases of problem solving strategies in instrumental ensembles were developed and presented on a web-based platform, and implemented in university music teacher education course contexts. Design research paradigm was used for its capacity to produce usable knowledge through the application of systemic instructional design processes. Results of the study has implications for music teacher education research and practice for improving pedagogical content knowledge through case-based learning, and the need for a wider examination of this topic.