The two major conferences held during 2008 at which Australian music education researchers presented papers and/or contributed to symposia were the 28th World Conference of the International Society for Music Education and the 30th Annual Conference of the Australian and New Zealand Association for Research in Music Education.
The ISME World Conference was held at Bologna in Italy from July 20 to 25 and, aside from the usual presentation of individual papers, a feature of this ISME conference was the large number of research-based symposia in the program. These included two symposia arranged by the ISME History Standing Committee--'Origins and Foundations of Music Education: Cross-cultural Historical Studies of Music in Compulsory Schooling' and 'Solmisation Past and Present: The Legacy of Guido d'Arezzo' that involved presentations from Robin Stevens (University of Melbourne) and Jane Southcott (Monash University). Other symposia on the topics 'International Perspectives on Pedagogies of Inclusion in Music Education: Theorising Practice' and 'Authenticating Music Teacher Education: Challenging Pedagogic Norms' were presented by Julie Ballantyne and Scott Harrison (Griffith University) and Margaret Barrett (University of Queensland).
In addition, several Australian delegates presented papers at the various ISME Commissions which preceded the conference--ISME has seven Commissions, each of which hosts a biennial Seminar (usually held immediately before the World Conference) as well as hosting sessions at the World Conference itself. Helen Farrell (formerly Chair of the ASME Victorian Chapter and now a Commission member) presented a paper at the Commission for Special Education, Music Therapy and Music Medicine Seminar. Steve Dillon (QUT) and Brydie-Leigh Bartlett (Queensland Conservatorium) presented papers at the Commission for Community Music Activity, and Amanda Watson (ASME National Secretary), Huib Schippers (Queensland Conservatorium), Diana Blom (UWS) and Dawn Bennett (Curtin University) presented at the Commission on the Education of the Professional Musician. Brad Merrick as well as Julie Ballantyne and Scott Harrison (Griffith University), Margaret Barrett (University of Queensland) and Nita Temmerman (USQ) were involved with presentations at the Music in Schools and Teacher Education Commission and several Australians including Neryl Jeanneret and Andrew Swainston (University of Melbourne), Andrew Brown (QUT), Anne Power (UWS), David Forrest (RMIT) and Jay McPherson (ASME President Elect) presented at the Commission for Policy: Culture, Education and Mass Media.
At its July meeting, the ISME Board ratified the formation of a new Forum on Instrumental and Vocal Music Teaching. The structure of the Forum will be similar to that of the Commissions, but its membership will reflect equally the general areas of individualized and group teaching of string, wind, percussion and keyboard instruments as well as singing. The Forum committee includes Graham Bartle (formerly University of Melbourne) as chair and Dawn Bennett (Curtin University). …