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Publication Detail
Ear playing and aural development in the instrumental lesson: Results from a "case-control" experiment
This article reports on a case-control experiment that was conducted in 2012 as part of the Ear Playing Project (EPP) at the Institute of Education, University of London. The EPP developed from the "informal learning" strand of Musical Futures and engaged instrumental students in the UK in learning from specially-created audio recordings without notation. Sixteen matched pairs of instrumental students (age 10-14 years) were divided into a "control" and an "experimental" group, with pupils taught using traditional instrumental teaching methods (without ear playing) in the former and with ear playing in the latter. The instrumentalists in both groups underwent aural tests prepared by the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM), which required played responses. Pre- and post-test scores were appraised for both groups for criteria including "Pitch," "Rhythm," "Contour," "Tempo," and "Closure," as well as a holistic mark. With the " experimental" students surpassing the "control" group in every criterion assessed at the post-test stage, results suggest that playing by ear from a recording may be beneficial for children's aural development. © 2013 The Author(s).
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