Music education is a field of study associated with the teaching and learning of music. It touches on all domains of learning, including the psychomotor domain (the development of skills), the cognitive domain (the acquisition of knowledge), and, in particular and significant ways,the affective domain, including music appreciation and sensitivity. The incorporation of music training from preschool to postsecondary education is common in most nations because involvement in music is considered a fundamental component of human culture and behavior. Music, like language, is an accomplishment that distinguishes us as humans.
In Elementary schools, children often learn to play instruments such as keyboards or recorders, sing in small choirs, and learn about the elements of musical sound and history of music. Although music education in many nations has traditionally emphasized Western classical music, in recent decades music educators tend to incorporate application and history of non-western music to give a well-rounded musical experience and teach multiculturalism and international understanding. In primary and secondary schools, students may often have the opportunity to perform in some type of musical ensemble, such as a choir, orchestra, or school band: concert band, marching band, or jazz band. In some secondary schools, additional music classes may also be available. In junior high school or its equivalent, music usually continues to be a required part of the curriculum.
At the university level, students in most arts and humanities programs may receive academic credit for taking music courses, which typically take the form of an overview course on the history of music, or a music appreciation course that focuses on listening to music and learning about different musical styles. In addition, most North American and European universities have some type of music ensemble in which students from various fields of study may participate such as a choir, concert band, marching band, or orchestra. Many universities also offer degree programs in the field of music education, allowing their students to become certified educators of primary and secondary school ensembles as well as beginner music classes. Advanced degrees can lead to university employment. These degrees come with the completion of varied technique classes, private instruction, numerous ensembles, and in depth observations of educators in the area. Music education departments in North American and European universities also often support interdisciplinary research in such areas as music psychology, music education historiography, educational ethnomusicology, sociomusicology, and philosophy of education.
The study of Western art music is increasingly common in music education outside of North America and Europe, including Asian nations such as South Korea, Japan, and China. At the same time, Western universities and colleges are widening their curriculum to include music of non-Western cultures, such as the music of Africa or Bali (e.g. Gamelan music), as well as even rock music (see popular music pedagogy).
Music education also takes place in individualized, life-long learning, and community contexts. Both amateur and professional musicians typically take music lessons, short private sessions with an individual teacher. Amateur musicians typically take lessons to learn musical rudiments and beginner- to intermediate-level musical techniques.
While instructional strategies are bound by the music teacher and the music curriculum in his or her area, many teachers rely heavily on one of many instructional methodologies that emerged in recent generations and developed rapidly during the latter half of the 20th Century:
Major international music education methods
The Dalcroze method was developed in the early 20th century by Swiss musician and educator mile Jaques-Dalcroze. The method is divided into three fundamental concepts - the use of solf ge, improvisation, and eurhythmics. Sometimes referred to as "rhythmic gymnastics", eurhythmics teaches concepts of rhythm, structure, and musical expression using movement, and is the concept for which Dalcroze is best known. It focuses on allowing the student to gain physical awareness and experience of music through training that takes place through all of the senses, particularly kinesthetic. According to the Dalcroze method, music is the fundamental language of the human brain and therefore deeply connected to what human beings are.
Kod ly method
Depiction of Curwen's Solf ge hand signs. This version includes the tonal tendencies and interesting titles for each tone. Zolt n Kod ly (1882 1967) was a prominent Hungarian music educator and composer who stressed the benefits of physical instruction and response to music. Although not really an educational method, his teachings reside within a fun, educational framework built on a solid grasp of basic music theory and music notation in various verbal and written forms. Kod ly's primary goal was to instill a lifelong love of music in his students and felt that it was the duty of the child's school to provide this vital element of education. Some of Kod ly's trademark teaching methods include the use of solf ge hand signs, musical shorthand notation (stick notation), and rhythm solmization (verbalization). Even though most countries have properly used their own folk music traditions to construct their own sequence of instruction, America primarily uses the Hungarian sequence even though Hungarian folk music is completely different from American. The work of Katinka S. Daniel brought Kodaly s ideas to the forefront of music education in the United States. Daniel introduced her curriculum to the International Kodaly Conference in 1973 and in the years that followed published works for music educators which combine Hungarian folk songs with American folk songs and western classical music. Ms. Daniel agreed with Kodaly about the appropriateness of using simple lights songs from students own culture as the basis for their music education but she was adamant that the sequence in which tonal patterns are taught should begin with the descending minor third, or sol-mi , pattern as it is the most natural and simplest interval for all children to sing in tune. Katina Daniel made the task of adapting Kodaly s work to American music education less daunting for American educators. 
Carl Orff was a prominent German composer. The Orff Schulwerk is considered an "approach" to music education. It begins with a student's innate abilities to engage in rudimentary forms of music, using basic rhythms and melodies. Orff considers the whole body a percussive instrument and students are led to develop their music abilities in a way that parallels the development of western music. The approach encourages improvisation and discourages adult pressures and mechanical drill, fostering student self-discovery. Carl Orff developed a special group of instruments, including modifications of the glockenspiel, xylophone, metallophone, drum, and other percussion instruments to accommodate the requirements of the Schulwerk courses.
The Suzuki method was developed by Shinichi Suzuki in Japan shortly after World War II, and it uses music education to enrich the lives and moral character of its students. The movement rests on the double premise that "all children can be well educated" in music, and that learning to play music at a high level also involves learning certain character traits or virtues which make a person's soul more beautiful. The primary method for achieving this is centered around creating the same environment for learning music that a person has for learning their native language. This 'ideal' environment includes love, high-quality examples, praise, rote training and repetition, and a time-table set by the student's developmental readiness for learning a particular technique. While the Suzuki Method is quite popular internationally, within Japan its influence is less significant than the Yamaha Method, founded by Genichi Kawakami in association with the Yamaha Music Foundation.
Other notable methods
In addition to the five major international methods described above, other approaches have been influential. Lesser-known methods are described below:
Gordon Music Learning Theory
This method is based on an extensive body of research and field testing by Edwin E. Gordon and others. Music Learning Theory provides the music teacher a comprehensive method for teaching musicianship through audiation, Gordon's term for hearing music in the mind with understanding. Teaching methods help music teachers establish sequential curricular objectives in accord with their own teaching styles and beliefs.
World Music Pedagogy
The growth of cultural diversity within school-age populations prompted music educators from the 1960s onward to diversify the content of the music curriculum, and to work with ethnomusicologists and some of the world's artist-musicians in establishing instructional practices relevant to the musical traditions. 'World music pedagogy' was coined by Patricia Shehan Campbell to describe world music content and practice in elementary and secondary school music programs. Pioneers of the movement, especially Barbara Reeder Lundquist and William M. Anderson, influenced a second generation of music educators (including Bryan J. Burton, Mary Goetze, Ellen McCullough-Brabson, and Mary Shamrock) to design and deliver curricular models to teachers of music of various levels and specializations.
Conversational Solf ge
Deriving influence from both Kod ly methodology and Gordon's Music Learning Theory, Conversational Solf ge was developed by Dr. John M. Feierabend, chair of music education at the Hartt School at the University of Hartford. The philosophy of this method is to view music as an aural art with a literature based curriculum. The sequence of this methodology involves a 12 step process to teach music literacy. Steps include rhythm and tonal patterns and decoding the patterns using syllables and notation. Unlike traditional Kod ly method, this method follows Kod ly's actual instructions and uses a sequence based on American folk songs instead of using the sequence that is used in Hungary based on Hungarian folk songs.
This early-childhood approach sometimes referred to as the Sensory-Motor Approach to Music was developed by the violinist Madeleine Carabo-Cone. This approach involves using props, costumes, and toys for children to learn basic musical concepts of staff, note duration, and the piano keyboard. The concrete environment of the specially planned classroom allows the child to learn the fundamentals of music by exploring through touch.
The Manhattanville Music Curriculum Project was developed in 1965 and is an alternative method in shaping positive attitudes toward music education. This creative approach centers around the student being the musician and involved in the discovery process. The teacher gives the student freedom to create, perform, improvise, conduct, research, and investigate different facets of music in a spiral curriculum.
On November 16, 2009, Mark O'Connor released books 1 and 2 of his 10-book O'Connor Method - A New American School of String Playing for string teachers and students of the violin designed to "guide students gradually through the development of pedagogical and musical techniques necessary to become a proficient, well-rounded musician through a carefully planned succession of pieces." Pieces cover a wide range of genres, and include: folk melodies such as "Amazing Grace," "Cielito Lindo" and "Buffalo Gals," American Classical tunes such as Copland's "Hoedown," two themes from Dvorak's New World Symphony, and O'Connor's "Appalachia Waltz." The series also contains short essays about topics including famous American fiddlers such as Thomas Jefferson and Davy Crockett, the history of Gypsies and Mariachi, and various dances. Teacher training sessions based on the method take place around the country.
History of music education in the United States
After the preaching of Reverend Thomas Symmes, the first singing school was created in 1717 in Boston, Massachusetts for the purposes of improving singing and music reading in the church. These singing schools gradually spread throughout the colonies. Reverend John Tufts published An Introduction to the Singing of Psalm Tunes Using Non-Traditional Notation which is regarded as the first music textbook in the colonies. Between 1700 to 1820, more than 375 tune books would be published by such authors as Samuel Holyoke, Francis Hopkinson, William Billings, and Oliver Holden.
Music began to spread as a curricular subject into other school districts. Soon after music expanded to all grade levels and the teaching of music reading was improved until the music curriculum grew to include several activities in addition to music reading. By the end of 1864 public school music had spread throughout the country.
In 1832, Lowell Mason and George Webb formed the Boston Academy of Music with the purposes of teaching singing and theory as well as methods of teaching music. Mason published his Manuel of Instruction in 1834 which were based upon the music education works of Pestalozzian System of Education founded by Swiss educator Johann Heinrich Pestalozzi. This handbook gradually became used by many singing school teachers. From 1837-1838, the Boston School Committee allowed Lowell Mason to teach music in the Hawes School as a demonstration. This is regarded as the first time music education was introduced to public schools in the United States. In 1838 the Boston School Committee approved the inclusion of music in the curriculum and Lowell Mason became the first recognized supervisor of elementary music. In later years Luther Whiting Mason became the Supervisor of Music in Boston and spread music education into all levels of public education (grammar, primary, and high school). During the middle of the 19th century, Boston became the model to which many other cities across the United States included and shaped their public school music education programs. Music methodology for teachers as a course was first introduced in the Normal School. The concept of classroom teachers in a school that taught music under the direction of a music supervisor was the standard model for public school music education during this century. (See also: Music education in the United States)
Early 20th century
In the United States, teaching colleges with four year degree programs developed from the Normal Schools and included music. Oberlin Conservatory first offered the Bachelor of Music Education degree. Osbourne G. McCarthy, and American music educator introduced details for studying music for credit in Chelsea High School. Notable events in the history of music education in the early 20th century also include:
Middle 20th century to 21st century
The following table illustrates some notable developments from this period:
||Historical Importance for Music Education
||The Child's Bill of Rights in Music
||A student-centered philosophy was formally espoused by MENC.
||The American School Band Directors Association formed
||The band movement becomes organized.
||Launch of Sputnik
||Increased curricular focus on science, math, technology with less emphasis on music education.
||Contemporary Music Project
||The purpose of the project was to make contemporary music relevant in children by placing quality composers and performers in the learning environment. Leads to the Comprehensive Musicianship movement.
American Choral Directors Association formed
||The choral movement becomes organized.
||Federally supported development of arts education focusing on quality music classroom literature. Juilliard Project leads to the compilation and publication of musical works from major historical eras for elementary and secondary schools.
||National Endowment for the Arts
||Federal financial support and recognition of the value music has in society.
||Establishment of a unified and ecletic philosophy of music education. Specific emphasis on youth music, special education music, urban music, and electronic music.
||35 Objectives listed by MENC for quality music education programs in public schools. Published and recommended for music educators to follow.
||The Ann Arbor Symposium
||Emphasized the impact of learning theory in music education in the areas of: auditory perception, motor learning, child development, cognitive skills, memory processing, affect, and motivation.
||Becoming Human Through Music symposium
||"The Wesleyan Symposium on the Perspectives of Social Anthropology in the Teaching and Learning of Music" (Middletown, Connecticut, August 6 10, 1984). Emphasized the importance of cultural context in music education and the cultural implications of rapidly changing demographics in the United States.
||Multicultural Symposium in Music Education
||Growing out of the awareness of the increasing diversity of the American School population, the three-day Symposium for music teachers was co-sponsored by MENC, the Society for Ethnomusicology, and the Smithsonian Institution, in order to provide models, materials, and methods for teaching music of the world's cultures to school children and youth.
||National Standards for Music Education
||For much of the 1980s, there was a call for educational reform and accountability in all curricular subjects. This led to the National Standards for Music Education introduced by MENC. The MENC standards were adopted by some states, while other states have produced their own standards or largely eschewed the standards movement.
||The Housewright Symposium / Vision 2020
||Examined changing philosophies and practices and predicted how American music education will (or should) look in the year 2020.
||Tanglewood II: Charting the Future
||Reflected on the 40 years of change in music education since the first Tanglewood Symposium of 1967, developing a declaration regarding priorities for the next forty years.
Music course offerings and even entire degree programs in online music education developed in the first decade of the 21st century at various institutions, and the fields of world music pedagogy and popular music pedagogy have also seen notable expansion.
Standards and assessment
Standards are curricular statements used to guide educators in determining objectives for their teaching. Use of standards became a common practice in many nations during the 20th century. For much of its existence, the curriculum for music education in the United States was determined locally or by individual teachers. In recent decades there has been a significant move toward adoption of regional and/or national standards. MENC: The National Association for Music Education, created nine voluntary content standards, called the National Standards for Music Education. These standards call for:
Singing, alone and with others, a varied repertoire of music.
Performing on instruments, alone and with others, a varied repertoire of music.
Improvising melodies, variations, and accompaniments.
Composing and arranging music within specified guidelines.
Reading and notating music.
- Listening to, analyzing, and describing music.
- Evaluating music and music performances.
- Understanding relationships between music, the other arts, and disciplines outside the arts.
- Understanding music in relation to history and culture.
Many states and school districts have adopted their own standards for music education.
Washington State has piloted a classroom based performance assessment which requires 5th and higher grade students to compose music on a staff and sight sing from sheet music without the aid of instruments. It is designed to assess standards expected to be attained by all students. Sight singing is a learning requirement in the state at the 8th grade level. Other states are evaluating possible performance assessments as well.
Integration with other subjects
Some schools and organizations promote integration of arts classes, such as music, with other subjects, such as math, science, or English. It is thought that by integrating the different curricula will help each subject to build off of one another, enhancing the overall quality of education. Music education can play a vital role in the development of the whole child and their scholastic journey.
One example is the Kennedy Center's "Changing Education Through the Arts" program. CETA defines arts integration as finding a natural connection(s) between one or more art forms (dance, drama/theater, music, visual arts, storytelling, puppetry, and/or creative writing) and one or more other curricular areas (science, social studies, English language arts, mathematics, and others) in order to teach and assess objectives in both the art form and the other subject area. This allows a simultaneous focus on creating, performing, and/or responding to the arts while still addressing content in other subject areas.
The Learning Maestros is a company whose goal is to create new interdisciplinary musical works and educational materials that explore connections between music and science, literature, visual arts, natural history, and issues of social conscience. It was founded by Julian Fifer and composer Bruce Adolphe. Notable interdisciplinary educational works they have created in collaboration with writers and scientists include "Tyrannosaurus Sue: A Cretaceous Concerto" (for the Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago), "Red Dogs and Pink Skies: A Musical Celebration of Paul Gauguin" (in conjunction with an exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York), "Self Comes to Mind" (created with neuroscientist Antonio Damasio, premiered by Yo-Yo Ma at the American Museum of Natural History, New York), "Let Freedom Sing: the story of Marian Anderson" (with writer Carolivia Herron, premiered by the Washington National Opera), "Zephyronia" (with writer Louise Gikow, for the Imani Winds), and "Witches, Wizards, Spells, and Elves: The Magic of Shakespeare" (for the Chicago Chamber Musicians and the Chicago Shakespeare Theater).
The European Union Lifelong Learning Programme 2007 2013 has funded three projects that use music to support language learning. Lullabies of Europe (for pre-school and early learners), FolkDC (for primary), and the recent PopuLLar (for secondary)
Significance of music education
According to the Florida Music Educators Association, Music and the Fine Arts have been a significant portion of every culture s educational system for more than 3,000 years. The human brain has been shown to be hard-wired for music; there is a biological basis for music being an important part of human experience. Music and the Arts surround daily life in our present day culture. Most present day artists, architects, and musicians acquired their interests during public school Fine Arts classes... Education without the Fine Arts is fundamentally impoverished and subsequently leads to an impoverished society. 
William Earhart, former president of the Music Educators National Conference, Music enhances knowledge in the areas of mathematics, science, geography, history, foreign language, physical education, and vocational training." Music not only inspires creativity and performance, but academic performance over all is seriously impacted. A research study produced by the Harris Poll has shown that 9 out of 10 individuals with post graduate degrees participated in music education. The National Report of SAT test takers study indicated students with music performance experience scored higher on the SAT: 57 points higher on verbal and 41 points higher on math. Schools that have high academic performance in the US are spending 20 to 30% of their budget in the arts with emphasis on music education.
Music education also increases one's success in society. In every human culture music is carried through for its ideas and ideals. The value of music shapes individual abilities and character starts to developThe Texas Commission on Drugs and Alcohol Abuse Report noted that students who participated in band or orchestra reported the lowest lifetime and current use of all substances included alcohol, tobacco, and illicit drugs.included alcohol, tobacco, and illicit drugs.
An education in music also increases overall brain activity. Research done at the University of Wisconsin has indicated that students with piano or keyboard experience performed 34% higher on tests that measure spatial-temporal lobe activity, which is the part of the brain that is used when doing mathematics, science, and engineering.
Music also improves learning. Specifically, music aids in text recall. Wallace (1994) studied setting text to a melody. One experiment created a three verse song with a non-repetitive melody; each verse had different music. A second experiment created a three verse song with a repetitive melody; each verse had exactly the same music. Another experiment studied text recall without music. The repetitive music produced the highest amount of text recall; therefore, music serves as a mnemonic device. Smith (1985) studied background music with word lists. One experiment involved memorizing a word list with background music; participants recalled the words 48 hours later. Another experiment involved memorizing a word list with no background music; participants also recalled the words 48 hours later. Participants who memorized word lists with background music recalled more words demonstrating music provides contextual cues.
It is important to note that "While studies show positive influences in other academic areas, music and the Fine Arts are an academic discipline that are, as the other academics, an independent way of learning and knowing."  Unfortunately, music in our schools are being cut at a drastic rate due to budget cuts being forced upon the schools. The Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction with Chesapeake Public Schools in Chesapeake, Virginia, Dr. Patricia Powers states, It is not unusual to see program cuts in the area of music and arts when economic issues surface. It is indeed unfortunate to lose support in this area especially since music and the art programs contribute to society in many positive ways. What some school boards do not know is that cutting music might cause test scores to fall due to the positive effect on everything from academics to citizenship and even personal hygiene.
Music makes student more successful in school. Skills learned through the discipline of music, transfer to study skills, communication skills, and cognitive skills useful in every part of the school curriculum. It also makes students become successful is participation in ensembles. This helps students learn to work effectively in the school environment and cuts down on resorting to violent or inappropriate behavior.
Music also has found to help students with developing intelligence. Studies have found that some measure of a child s intelligence is indeed increased with music instruction. What is new however, is a combination of tightly controlled behavioral studies and groundbreaking neurological research that show how music study can actively contribute to brain development. Researchers at the University of Montreal used various brain imaging techniques to investigate brain activity during musical tasks and found that sight-reading musical scores and playing music both activate regions in all four of the cortex s lobes; and that parts of the cerebellum are also activated during those tasks.
Other studies show that music also helps with reasoning. Music makes students better learners and better thinkers.
In some communities - and even entire national education systems - music is provided little support as an academic subject area, and music teachers feel that they must actively seek greater public endorsement for music education as a legitimate subject of study. This perceived need to change public opinion has resulted in the development of a variety of approaches commonly called "music advocacy". Music advocacy comes in many forms, some of which are based upon legitimate scholarly arguments and scientific findings, while other examples rely on unconvincing data and remain rather controversial.
Among the more recent high-profile music advocacy projects that have become the subject of widespread controversy are the "Mozart Effect" (which is now widely believed to be based on misinterpretation and exaggeration), the National Anthem Project, and the movement referred to as Cultural Diversity in Music Education which seeks out means of equitable pedagogy across students regardless of their race, ethnicity, or socioeconomic circumstance. Even though the Mozart Effect is a controversy it has some significance in proving that it is reliable. The test has two, a group that has music taught and a group with no music taught. When this test was given to three-year-olds their temporal test improved by 35% over those with no music; this lasted for several days. The only flaw to this test is the different age groups, the older you are the less of the effect it will have on you.
Many contemporary music scholars assert that music advocacy will only be truly effective when based on empirically sound arguments that transcend political motivations and personal agendas. This position regarding music advocacy has especially been advanced by music education philosophers (such as Bennett Reimer, Estelle Jorgensen, David J. Elliott, John Paynter and Keith Swanwick,), yet a gap remains between the discourse of music education philosophy and the actual practices of music teachers and music organization executives.
Influential music educators
- Anderson, William M. and Patricia Shehan Campbell, eds. Multicultural Perspectives in Music Education. Reston, VA: Music Educators National Conference, 1989.
- Campbell, Patricia Shehan. Teaching Music Globally. New York: Oxford University Press, 2004.
- DeBakey, Michael E., MD. Leading Heart Surgeon, Baylor College of Music.
- Kertz-Welzel, Alexandra. "The Singing Muse: Three Centuries of Music Education in Germany." Journal of Historical Research in Music Education XXVI no. 1 (2004): 8-27.
- Kertz-Welzel, Alexandra. "Didaktik of Music: A German Concept and its Comparison to American Music Pedagogy." International Journal of Music Education (Practice) 22 No. 3 (2004): 277-286.
- Kertz-Welzel, Alexandra. Every Child for Music: Musikp dagogik und Musikunterricht in den USA. Musikwissenschaft/Musikp dagogik in der Blauen Eule, no. 74. Essen, Germany: Verlag Die Blaue Eule, 2006. ISBN 3-89924-169-X.
Machover, Tod, "My Cello" in Turkle, Sherry (editor), Evocative objects : things we think with, Cambridge, Mass. : MIT Press, 2007. ISBN 978-0-262-20168-1
- Pete Moser and George McKay, eds. (2005) Community Music: A Handbook. Russell House Publishing. ISBN 1-903855-70-5.
National Standards for Arts Education. Reston, VA: Music Educators National Conference (MENC), 1994. ISBN 1-56545-036-1.
- Neurological Research, Vol. 19, February 1997.
- Ratey, John J., MD. A User s Guide to the Brain. New York: Pantheon Books, 2001.
- Rauscher, F.H., et al. Music and Spatial Task Performance: A Causal Relationship, University of California, Irvine, 1994.
Seashore, Carl, "The Measurement of Musical Talent", New York, G. Schirmer, 1915
- Seashore, Carl, "The Psychology of Musical Talent", Boston, New York [etc.] Silver, Burdett and Company, 1919
- Seashore, Carl, "Approaches to the Science of Music and Speech", Iowa City, The University, 1933
- Seashore, Carl, "Psychology of Music", New York, London, McGraw-Hill Book Company, Inc., 1938
- Schippers, Huib. Facing the Music. New York: Oxford University Press, 2010.
- Sorce Keller, Marcello. "Music in Higher Education in Italy and in the United States: the Pros and Cons of Tradition and Innovation", Symposium, XXIV(1984), 140- 147.
- Sorce Keller, Marcello. "Music Education in Italy: Something New on the Western Front", International Journal of Music Education, 10(1987), 17- 19.
- Weinberger, Norm. The Impact of Arts on Learning. MuSICa Research Notes 7, no. 2 (Spring 200).
- Kertz-Welzel, Alexandra. "Piano Improvisation Develops Musicianship." Orff-Echo XXXVII No. 1 (2004): 11-14.
- Woodall, Laura and Brenda Ziembroski, (2002). Promoting Literacy Through Music.
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