Libraries in Music Teaching Institutions Branch

By Shekhter, Pia; Kidwell, Claire | Fontes Artis Musicae, October-December 2011 | Go to article overview

Libraries in Music Teaching Institutions Branch


Shekhter, Pia, Kidwell, Claire, Fontes Artis Musicae


The first session of Libraries in Music Teaching Institutions Branch was entitled Recent Developments in Higher Music Education. Three invited speakers gave presentations on different aspects of the subject.

Kieran Corcoran from the College of Arts and Tourism, Dublin Institute of Technology, started by giving a presentation about ELIA (European League of Institutes of the Arts). Mr. Corcoran was recently elected President of the organization. His presentation had the title 'Strengthening the Position and Influence of the Arts and Higher Arts Education'. ELIA is an independent network organization for higher arts education with around 350 members in 47 countries. The members represent circa 300,000 students from all disciplines--Fine Art, Design, Theatre, Music, Dance, Media Arts, and Architecture. Main objectives are, for example, 'to promote the specific nature of arts education', 'to encourage European mobility' and 'to promote and support international networks in the artistic field.' Key issues are Artistic Research, Quality Assurance, and Advocacy etc. The ELIA Biennial usually attracts approximately 400-500 participants. Aside from the conference there are also regular specialist symposia and workshops.

The second speaker was Jeremy Cox, Chief Executive of AEC (European Association of Conservatoires). His presentation was entitled 'Rank-and-File Musicians': Finding musical equivalents for the mapping and ranking indicators being developed in European higher education'. Mr. Cox started with a general presentation of the Association, which has 273 member institutions in 55 countries. He then went on to talk about quality assurance, accreditation and ranking--topics which have been high on the agenda in recent years. AEC has developed a 'subject-specific and European-level approach to quality assurance and accreditation, based on the special characteristics and needs of the higher music education sector'. In January 2011 the AEC Accreditation Committee was established. The Association has worked as a stakeholder together with ELIA for art-related issues in projects like 'U-Map' ('a University Profiling Tool') and 'U-Multirank' ('a multi-dimensional global university ranking'). Mr. Cox suggested that this would have implications for music librarians 'as the likely coordinators of data collection in music'.

The last speaker was Claudia Igbrude from the School of Art, Design and Printing, Dublin Institute of Technology. The intriguing title of her presentation was 'Is One Life Enough? 2nd Life as an Educational Tool'. Ms Igbrude talked about her experiences of using 'Second Life' as a virtual learning environment for the Arts and design domain. The idea was to use it as a venue, and a place for experimentation. Advantages mentioned were for example the possibility to enable communities, to offer a creative environment etc. Challenges that had occurred had to do with technical difficulties, work load for the teacher etc.

The second LIMTI session of the conference was entitled Research into Higher Music Education and the role of the library, and was comprised of three presentations.

The first paper, entitled 'Research into Higher Music Education: An Overview' was presented by Harald Jorgensen (Norwegian Academy of Music, Oslo). He explained that, in contrast to other higher education institutions (especially universities), higher music education institutions, i.e., conservatoires, academies, Musikhochschulen, and schools of music, have not been recognized as a distinct and significant area for educational research. Whilst there are no specific publications dedicated to research about such institutions, as a basis for his study Jorgensen consulted 847 documents, comprising journal articles, doctoral dissertations, and book chapters, which address aspects of institutional core characteristics, resources and processes as well as the relationship to external sectors.

Jorgensen went on to present quantitative data to demonstrate the distribution of research in each of these areas.

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