Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Exchanging “Insider” Knowledge: Youth-Led Participatory Action Research in Music

Music Education Special Interest Group


Research Seminar Announcement


Exchanging "Insider" Knowledge: Youth-Led Participatory Action Research in Music


Dr. Susan O'Neill, Faculty of Education, Simon Fraser University, Canada



Tuesday 16th November 2010; 12.30-1.30; Room 944


Further details from Lucy Green: l.green@ioe.ac.uk


All are welcome





There is evidence that the involvement of young people as collaborators in the process of research contributes to the value and relevance of the information gathered. Young people, working within their own peer cultures, have a perspective that is not always easy for researchers and teachers to tap into. Yet, their "insider" knowledge can make an important contribution to curriculum initiatives and pedagogical approaches. This exploratory study draws on Participatory Action Research (PAR) frameworks and Inquiry-Based Learning (IBL) to engage young people, teachers, and researchers in a collaborative "Music Inquiry Project". The project provides learning opportunities for youth to reflect on themselves and the ways they engage with music at school. The study explores how we might use youth-led research to build and sustain a culture of "knowers" in the classroom that fosters an appreciation of local knowledge and the capacity to speak out about that knowledge. It examines a pedagogical approach that can act as a catalyst rather than a constraint for expanding equitable learning opportunities that are reflective, dialogical, collaborative, participatory, interactive, integrative, value-driven and strength-based. It also affords opportunities for young people to gain an understanding of the need for advocacy efforts aimed at changing attitudes and promoting positive youth music engagement and a thriving music culture in their school. 





Susan O'Neill is Associate Professor in Arts Education at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, Canada. She is Director of Research for Youth, Music and Education (RYME) and Senior Editor of the Canadian Music Educators' Biennial Book Series, Research to Practice. She has published widely in music psychology and music education. She applies her multidisciplinary background (three separate graduate degrees in music, education, psychology) to the study of young people's artistic beliefs and values, youth-led participatory action research, and the impact of youth music engagement on motivation, identity, well-being, media literacy, and cultural understanding. As a flutist, she performs benefit concerts to raise awareness of social justice issues with her husband, pianist Yaroslav Senyshyn. One of their joint recitals was recently released on CD, Live at Von Kuster Hall (Platon Promotions).