Mind the Gap: Inclusive Pedagogies for Diverse Classrooms

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“Music courses contain students from a wide variety of demographic backgrounds and disparate levels of prior musical experience and ability. How can we ensure that all students have equitable opportunities to learn and succeed in these courses? In this empirical study, we disaggregate measures of student learning to better understand how major designation (music vs. non-music), prior musical experience, GPA, and underrepresented status affect student success in an introductory, undergraduate music course designed to leverage inclusive pedagogies in order to provide equitable learning opportunities for all students. We present our study as a much-needed initial effort to measure the ways introductory music classes intentionally or unintentionally privilege students with certain prior experiences. We argue that research on equity and inclusion in music classroom pedagogy matters not just for classes that attract non-majors or a mix of majors and non-majors, but also for classes composed exclusively of majors. While we find that groups of students experienced disparities in learning opportunities in the course, the relatively small size of those disparities suggest that implementing further inclusive pedagogies might help close the gap in achievement between student groups.”

by: Louis Kaiser Epstein, Taylor Okonek, Anna Perkins

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  • keywords: musicology; music theory; ethnomusicology; pedagogy; ethics; advocacy
  • Listing ID: 2070
  • Resource Type: Article/Paper
  • Audience: for instructor use