Music Education Special Interest Group
Research Seminar Announcement
"The effect of the medium of communication on remote instrumental music lessons"
Dr Sam Duffy, Cognitive Science Research Group, Music Cognition Lab, Queen Mary, University of London
Monday 7th March 2016
Further details from Lucy Green, firstname.lastname@example.org
All are welcome
A common way to learn to play a musical instrument is through regular one-to-one lessons with an experienced musician. However musicians travel frequently to perform and temporary separation of a tutor-student pair can occur at critical times, such as prior to an important audition or exam. Some students in geographically isolated locations find it difficult to access the level of expertise they need for their instrument, making it difficult to fulfil their potential. A solution to these problems is to conduct remote lessons through videoconference, however the medium changes the nature of communication in ways which impact directly on lesson interaction.
Sam will provide an overview of her doctoral studies in this area, using video-ethnography to compare student-tutor interaction during 'same room' or co-present one-to-one instrumental lessons to remote lessons mediated by videoconference. A key finding from this work is that the small fragments of music which are characteristic of this type of teaching interaction are managed conversationally, and themselves take on characteristics of conversation turns. Hence a significant effect of changing the medium of communication to video for a remote lesson is the impact on lesson dialogue, including the musical contributions. Changes in spatiality and non-verbal interaction are also considered, for example rather than the 'face-to-face' configuration enforced by videoconference, alternative technology to support remote music tuition could instead be based around the joint focus of the co-present lesson interaction, the shared music score.
Sam's research interests include examining the interaction between musicians in different contexts such as performance, education and social music making; the impact that can be achieved through music in a community; and how technology can be used to transform these interactions. Her thesis "Shaping Musical Performance Through Conversation" examined the effect of remote teaching technology on student-tutor interaction during one-to-one instrumental music lessons. Sam was
Creativeworks London Researcher in Residence at the London Symphony Orchestra in 2015, using qualitative methods to examine the practice of impact evaluation by Project Managers working at the London Symphony Orchestra's education and community programme, LSO Discovery. Based in the Cognitive Science Research Group and the Music Cognition Lab at Queen Mary University of London, Sam is currently working on an interdisciplinary project with the London Sinfonietta to investigate new ways of bringing participatory music education to children, using a game based iPhone app based on the piece Clapping Music, by the minimalist composer Steve Reich.