Aural modeling and mental representations to elicit young students’ metacognitive responses in developing expressivity at the piano



Bajo la dirección de Patricia González-Moreno



The purpose of this study was to explore the ways in which high school violin students transform and comprehend a teacher’s model through the framework of Kolb’s (1984) Experiential Learning Theory. Additionally, the Learning Styles Inventory (LSI) results of this study’s participants were compared to extant researchers’ LSI data. Kolb and Kolb’s Learning Styles Inventory 3.1 and a brief survey were administered to participants (N = 100) during Phase I of the study in order to gather data regarding three quantitative independent variables—learning style, gender, and grade level. A subset of participants (n = 15) representing an array of those variables participated in Phase II of the study wherein participants were shown a video recorded lesson. During that lesson, a teacher modeled an eight-measure melodic phrase for each participant whose responses to the lesson were recorded for later analysis. Qualitative student responses (applied strategy, focus during the lesson, type of response to the model, performance intensity, task complexity) and interview responses were coded and distilled into common themes and compared among independent variables from Phase I. The high school violinist participants in this study preferred reflective observation and concrete experience orientations more frequently than was the case in extant research. The only significant interaction between independent variables was found between gender and learning preference. The two most frequently applied strategies were derived from Initiating (AE/CE = 24.46%) and Creating (CE/RO = 20.44%) learning styles. Participants largely focused on musical components (77.55%)—e.g., rhythm, pitch, intonation, articulation—by performing with the bow (48.72%) concurrently with the model (57.95%). When provided with practice time, participants largely utilized low (33. 68%) or silent, reflective (24.47%) intensities. Fundamental, two-phase combinations of strategies were applied the majority of the time (57.72%) by participants. Qualitative descriptions of the variety of participant responses were included and contextualized using LSI data. I concluded, based on a synthesis of the quantitative data and qualitative observations, that participants largely prioritized immediate individual needs—such as pitch identification or previous sections of the lesson—over both teacher instruction and their own learning preferences. I also concluded that a single modeling experience often resulted in a diverse array of participant responses—which may or may not adhere to the immediate content of the lesson. As a result of this study, I suggest that music educators and researchers consider that learners potentially utilize a singular modeling experience in a variety of different ways resulting in an array of potential outcomes. It is important for teachers to be explicit and clear in their instructions surrounding a modeling task in order to better guide students towards desired outcomes. Future researchers might consider learners’ viewpoints in response to a modeled experience as a means of framing achievement, outcome, or other research topics. ELT researchers might consider building on the implications of the comparison among KLSI data and qualitative data among learners under the age of 19 with a focus on variables outside the typical factors of gender, age, educational level, educational specialization, and culture.

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