'Illiterate' musicians : An historic review of curriculum and practice for student popular musicians in Australian senior secondary classrooms

Journal article


Carroll, Christine. (2019). 'Illiterate' musicians : An historic review of curriculum and practice for student popular musicians in Australian senior secondary classrooms. British Journal of Music Education. 36(2), pp. 155-171. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0265051719000196
AuthorsCarroll, Christine
Abstract

This article examines curriculum and practice in Australian secondary classroom music education, in order to trace the inclusion of, and provision for, students with learning orientations based on popular music forms. A 60-year period of curriculum reform, matriculation statistics and literature is surveyed with a focus on the state of New South Wales (NSW), where the ‘non-literate’ student musician was first acknowledged in curriculum documents dating from the late 1970s at the senior secondary level (Music Syllabus Year 11 and 12: New 2 Unit A Course. Draft Document). Three overlapping eras frame discussion. The first discusses the original post–World War II school curriculum established for Western art music (WAM); the second discusses the period of curriculum reform beginning in the 1960s and 1970s, which leads to the inclusion of popular music at junior secondary levels; and the third is the present era from roughly 1980 onwards, where separate pathways of instruction are maintained for WAM and students with interests in popular and contemporary musics. Legitimation Code Theory (LCT) from the sociology of education is employed, with analysis unveiling a series of historic code shifts and clashes with implications for present practice. An unveiling of these codes explains the cause of ongoing tensions surrounding the inclusion of popular music and musicians in Australian music classrooms and provides foundation for much-needed curriculum development in the NSW context, and potentially elsewhere, where similar dynamics underpin practice in secondary classrooms.

Keywordsstudent popular musicians; curriculum; music literacy; Legitimation Code Theory
Year2019
JournalBritish Journal of Music Education
Journal citation36 (2), pp. 155-171
PublisherCambridge University Press
ISSN0265-0517
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1017/S0265051719000196
Scopus EID2-s2.0-85069205218
Research or scholarlyResearch
Page range155-171
Publisher's version
License
All rights reserved
File Access Level
Controlled
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online12 Jul 2019
Publication process dates
Deposited09 Aug 2021
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