Debates in Music Teaching encourages student and practising teachers to engage with contemporary issues and developments in music education. It aims to introduce a critical approach to the central concepts and practices that have influenced major interventions and initiatives in music teaching, and supports the development of new ways of looking at ideas around teaching and learning in music.

Accessible and comprehensive chapters will stimulate thinking and creativity in relation to theory and practice, and will facilitate readers in reaching their own informed judgements and rationalising their position with deep theoretical knowledge and understanding. Throughout the book, international experts in the field consider key issues including:

  • the justification for music in the school curriculum
  • partnerships in music education and the identity of the music teacher
  • technology and conceptions of musicianship
  • social justice and music education
  • the place of diverse musical genres and traditions in the music curriculum
  • critical thinking and music education
  • autonomy and integrity for music in cross-curricular work
  • the politics, sociology and philosophy of music education.

Debates in Music Teaching is for all student and practising teachers interested in furthering their understanding of the subject. Including carefully annotated further reading and reflective questions to help shape research and writing, this collection stimulates critical and creative thinking in relation to contemporary debates within music education.

chapter |6 pages


ByChris Philpott, Gary Spruce

part Part 1|75 pages

Philosophical, Sociological and Psychological Foundations

chapter Chapter 1|11 pages

What can a reflective teacher learn from philosophies of music education?

From personal philosophy to critical cultural readership
ByHeidi Westerlund

chapter Chapter 2|13 pages

Policy and practice in music education

A sociological perspective
ByRuth Wright

chapter Chapter 3|15 pages

Creativity, culture and the practice of music education

ByJohn Finney

chapter Chapter 4|16 pages

The justification for music in the curriculum

Music can be bad for you
ByChris Philpott

chapter Chapter 5|18 pages

What is musical development and can education make a difference?

ByKeith Swanwick

part Part II|52 pages

Political Perspectives

chapter Chapter 6|17 pages

Music education and social justice

Towards a radical political history and vision
ByPaul Woodford

chapter Chapter 7|16 pages

The National Curriculum as manifest destiny

ByCathy Benedict, Patrick Schmidt

chapter Chapter 8|17 pages

Musical ideologies, practices and pedagogies

Addressing pupil alienation through a praxial approach to the music curriculum
ByGary Spruce, Francesca Matthews

part Part III|86 pages

The Pedagogy of Music

chapter Chapter 9|16 pages

Integrity and autonomy for music in a creative and cross-curriculum

ByJonathan Barnes

chapter Chapter 10|16 pages

Assessment for self-directed learning in music education

ByChris Philpott

chapter Chapter 11|16 pages

Those who can, play; those who can't, use Music Tech?

How can teachers knock down the walls between music and music technology?
ByJonathan Savage

chapter Chapter 12|12 pages

Musical knowledge, critical consciousness and critical thinking

ByGary Spruce

chapter Chapter 13|12 pages

Music 14–19: Choices, challenges, and opportunities

ByKeith Evans

chapter Chapter 14|12 pages

Partnerships in music education

So — who is the teacher?
ByKatherine Zeserson

part Part IV|38 pages

Professional Development

chapter Chapter 15|19 pages

Teachers and pupils as researchers

Methods for researching school music
ByTim Cain, Pamela Burnard

chapter Chapter 16|17 pages

Professional development and music education

ByVanessa Young