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A survey of Kootenay music educators’ attitudes towards music education philosophies Rogers, Donald Henry

Abstract

This study is an investigation of Kootenay Music Educators' attitudes toward four philosophical approaches as defined by a previous study by Hanley (1989). The four philosophical approaches are: hedonic, absolute expressionist, formalist, and referentialist. Q-methodology was used as the instrument to gather data about the subjects' perception of two teaching situations: their “actual” teaching practice and their perception of an “ideal” teaching practice. The findings revealed diversity of philosophical approaches in the "actual" sort similar to previous studies. In addition to the four proposed philosophical types, as fifth types "subjectivist" was also found. The "ideal" sort suggested that the absolute - expressionist is the preferred approach although disagreement of rejected statements varied greatly. The hedonic approach was also significantly present. The findings are discussed in light of the tenuous support for music education. The call for music educators to engage the issue of philosophy in music education is made. The development of a more definable foundation for the role of music education within the total curriculum is suggested to be only possible after educators, administrators, and the public enter into the process of philosophical investigation.

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