Cooperative learning in the keyboard laboratory : a study of adult learners in a cooperative learning programme
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Music
The thesis examined the proposal that subjects who were training to be generalist primary school teachers and had a minimal background in music, gained more effective initial keyboard and allied general musicianship skills through a programme based on cooperative learning rather than one based on individual, tutor directed, learning. The history of cooperative learning was investigated with a particular emphasis on recent work and research. There appeared to be an almost total lack of information on cooperative learning as applied to both adult learners and music education. The author devised a field trial programme that addressed both of these areas. The effectiveness of group tuition methods was tested using the field trial programme through a comparative study of subjects who were involved in a cooperative learning model of tuition, with an equal number of subjects who were tutored on an individual basis. Both groups were taught in a keyboard laboratory. All subjects were presented with an identical programme over the same period of time. At the conclusion of the field trial programme, subjects were tested on their ability to play the electronic keyboard and also in the area of general musicianship skills. Conclusions based on data derived from the tests indicated that the subjects in the cooperative learning groups scored more highly in all areas of the programme. It appeared that there was sufficient evidence to suggest that the cooperative mode of learning keyboard and associated musical skills was a superior one to the more traditional tutor directed programme as evidenced in the field trial programme. A questionnaire was also sent to all the New Zealand Colleges of Education to determine the nature of courses conducted in their keyboard laboratories. Results indicated that courses were virtually all tutor directed and that cooperative learning occured only on an informal basis.