ERIC Number: EJ1065050
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Jun
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
Skill Development: How Brain Research Can Inform Music Teaching
Walter, Donald J.; Walter, Jennifer S.
Music Educators Journal, v101 n4 p49-55 Jun 2015
Practice is a major element in cultivating musical skill. Some psychologists have proposed that deliberate practice, a specific framework for structuring practice activities, creates the kind of practice necessary to increase skill and develop expertise. While psychologists have been observing behavior, neurologists have studied how the brain changes when people learn. Neurologists have found changes in the structure of the white matter of the brain that correlate with vast amounts of musical practice. This article contains a brief overview of what researchers believe happens in the brain when people learn or refine motor skills, such as singing or playing an instrument. This article also explores the new research into myelination, one mechanism the body uses to optimize the efficiency of neural circuits. In addition, the authors propose ways that music educators can use findings from both psychological and neurological fields to improve music teaching and learning and help their students begin to develop musical expertise.
Descriptors: Music Education, Brain, Teaching Methods, Research, Skill Development, Psychology, Psychomotor Skills, Brain Hemisphere Functions, Singing, Musical Instruments, Music Activities, Music Teachers, Expertise, Musicians, Neurological Organization, Neurology, Check Lists, Drills (Practice)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
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