Transforming Musicianship – Musicians’ Learner Identity

The research project led by Dr. Guadalupe López-Íñiguez aims at renewing learning and performance practices in classical music.

A colorful illustration of a stave.child climbing the notes on a

Introduction

World’s leading scholars in music psychology and music education acknowledge that the master-apprentice model of pedagogy underpinning instrumental studio teaching is outdated and ineffective. To change this, it is important to develop autonomous music learners who can constructively direct their learning and careers.

Based at the Sibelius Academy, the Transforming Musicianship Project (2018-2021) aimed at renewing learning and performance practices among classical musicians and transform pedagogy in higher music education by highlighting the important of learner identity — a type of identity that, despite being crucial to learning, had not got enough attention in music studies or in other educational fields before this research started.

The multidisciplinary project comprised an intra-individual, experimental and longitudinal study with eight classical musicians including the PI. The research involved questionnaires, reflexive diaries, interviews, concerts and rehearsals, and naturalistic observations of behaviour.

Description and impact of the project

Based at the Sibelius Academy, the Transforming Musicianship project attended to the renewal of learning and performance practices among classical musicians by highlighting the importance of learner identity. The findings have the potential to transform higher music education pedagogy, not only in Finland, where the study took place, but also in other Western countries with similar professional study programs. Through a longitudinal metacognitive intervention, participating postgraduate musicians and the PI developed artistic autonomy, became more self-regulated in their learning, and went through self-discovery processes as learners and professionals. This contributed to their future-making decisions and learner identity building. The participants also critically addressed their professional learning pathways and thus acknowledged that this research contributed to their holistic development, and the pedagogies that underpinned their training were insufficient to prepare them for working life.

The project’s findings to date have helped communicate with audiences attending cultural events and academic talks connected to non- scientific institutions about the need for social change in the music industry in relation to the sustainability of music careers.

The PI has also attempted to help musicians, teachers, and students in higher education benefit from constructivist self-regulated learning materials and historically informed approaches to improve and strengthen their artistic performances.

In the short term, the PI has helped her research participants reflexively engage with the idea that educational practices in higher music education still largely follow the master-apprentice tradition combined with the orthodoxy of performance practice. In that regard, the research intervention has helped these postgraduate musicians see alternative routes and critically assess their learning pathways, which has resulted in a transformation of their learner and musical identities.

In sum, the research project participants have become more autonomous, motivated, metacognitive, and self-regulated as learners and future professionals, as reported in all of the related publications. In addition, the final societal function of the research in the long-term has been analysed through a policy-based article currently in review. It has the potential to affect change in the professional education of classical musicians in other Western countries.

Publications

Refereed journal articles

López-Íñiguez, G., Burland, K., & Bennett, D. (in press). Understanding the musical identity and career thinking of postgraduate classical music performance students [Special issue on Identity and Music].Musicæ Scientiæ, 26(3)

Burland, K., Bennett, D., & López-Íñiguez, G. (in press). Validation of the Musical Identity Measure (MIM) [Special issue on Identity and Music]. Musicæ Scientiæ, 26(3).

López-Íñiguez, G., & Bennett, D. (2021). Broadening student musicians’ career horizons: The importance of being and becoming a learner in higher educationInternational Journal of Music Education, 39(2), 134–150.

López-Íñiguez, G., & Burnard, P. (2021). Towards a nuanced understanding of musicians’ professional learning pathways: What does critical reflection contribute? Research Studies in Music Education.

López-Íñiguez, G., & McPherson, G. E. (2021). Regulation of emotions to optimise classical music performance: A single-case quasi-experimental study of a cellist-researcherFrontiers in Psychology12, 627601.

López-Íñiguez, G., & Bennett, D. (2020). A lifespan perspective on multi-professional musicians: Does music education prepare classical musicians for their careers? Music Education Research, 22(1), 1–14.

López-Íñiguez, G., & McPherson, G. E. (2020). Applying self-regulated learning and self-determination theory to optimize the performance of a concert cellistFrontiers in Psychology11, 385

López-Íñiguez, G., & McPherson, G. E. (2022). Self-regulatory engagement of professional students in higher music education producing their own profiled concert [Manuscript submitted for publication].

López-Íñiguez, G., & Bennett, D. (2022). Possible selves and future career making of graduate musicians [Manuscript submitted for publication].

Policy documents and reports

López-Íñiguez, G. (2022). Performing Musicians as lifelong learners: A policy window to strengthen professionalism in higher music education [Manuscript submitted for publication].

López-Íñiguez, G. (2022). Performing Musicians as lifelong learners: Report for higher music education institutions [in preparation].

Special issue of a journal

Burland, K., Bennett, D., & López-Íñiguez, G., (2022). Special Issue on Identity and Music. Musicae Scientiae26(3).

Refereed edited books

Pozo, J. I., Pérez-Echeverría, M. P., López-Íñiguez, G., & Torrado, J. A. (Eds.) (2022). Learning and teaching in the music studio. A student-centred approach. Landscapes: Arts, Aesthetics. Springer.

Pozo, J. I., Pérez-Echeverría, M. P., Torrado, J. A., & López-Íñiguez, G. (Eds.) (2020). Aprender y enseñar música. Un enfoque centrado en los alumnos. Morata.

Refereed book chapters

López-Íñiguez, G., Pérez-Echeverría, M. P., Pozo, J. I., & Torrado, J. A. (2022). Student-centred music education: principles for improving learning and teaching. In J. I. Pozo, M. P. Pérez-Echeverría, G. López-Íñiguez, and J. A. Torrado (Eds.), Learning and teaching in the music studio. A student-centred approach (pp. 371–387). Landscapes: Arts, Aesthetics. Springer.

López-Íñiguez, G., Pozo, J. I., & Pérez-Echeverría, M. P. (2022). Learning and teaching music in the 21st century. In J. I. Pozo, M. P. Pérez-Echeverría, G. López-Íñiguez, and J. A. Torrado (Eds.), Learning and teaching in the music studio. A student-centred approach (pp. 3–20). Landscapes: Arts, Aesthetics. Springer.

Gaunt, H., López-Íñiguez, G., & Creech, A. (2021). Musical engagement in one-to-one contexts. In A. Creech, D. Hodges & S. Hallam (Eds.), Routledge international handbook of music psychology in education and the community (pp. 335–350). Routledge.

López-Íñiguez, G., Pérez-Echeverría, M. P., Pozo, J. I., & Torrado, J. A. (2020). La educación musical centrada en el alumno: principios para mejorar el aprendizaje y la enseñanza. En J. I. Pozo, M. P. Pérez-Echeverría, J. A. Torrado, & G. López-Íñiguez (Eds.), Aprender y enseñar música: Un enfoque centrado en los alumnos (pp. 411–425). Morata.

López-Íñiguez, G., Pozo, J. I., & Pérez-Echeverría, M. P. (2020). El aprendizaje y la enseñanza de la música en el Siglo XXI. En J. I. Pozo, M. P. Pérez-Echeverría, J. A. Torrado, & G. López-Íñiguez (Eds.), Aprender y enseñar música: Un enfoque centrado en los alumnos (pp. 29–41). Morata.

Refereed articles in conference proceedings

López-Íñiguez, G., & Coutts, L. (2020). Embracing a learner identity: An Autoethnographic duet exploring disruptive critical incidents in instrumental music pedagogy. In H. Partti & L. Coutts (Eds.), proceedings of the 23rdInternational Seminar of the ISME Commission on the Education of the Professional Musician (CEPROM), online seminar: Ethics and inclusion in the education of professional musicians (pp. 143–163). National Library of Australia Cataloguing-in-Publication.

Non-refereed publications

López-Íñiguez, G. (2020). Report from the symposium ‘Transforming musicianship: Understanding C19th historical style and its implications for learning’, Sibelius Academy, Helsinki, 12th of November 2018.Trio, 18(1-2), 111–116.

Dissemination

Invited keynotes

López-Íñiguez, G. (2022, April 2). “Well-being, Careers, and Professional Education of Young Artists in Times of Crises”. Opening Keynote at The Young Musicians and Dancers of Europe Speak about Culture!, event organized by the European Union Youth Orchestra (EUYO), the University of the Arts Helsinki, and the Finnish Ministry of Education and Culture. Paavo Hall, Music Centre, Helsinki (Finland).

López-Íñiguez, G. (2020, December 3). “Higher Music Education: Current Needs and  Research interests”.Opening Keynote at the 7th National and 5th International Conference on Superior Conservatoires of Music “CONSMU” (virtual conference), organised by the Spanish Society for Music Education. Superior Conservatoire of Malaga (Spain).

López-Íñiguez, G. (2019, March 28). “Artistic Performance Research Studies In Higher Music Education“. Opening Keynote at the International Symposium “What is the Art in Music?, organised by The Alliance for Higher Education (Lehren). Radialsystem V, Berlin (Germany).

Invited talks & guest lectures

López-Íñiguez, G. (2020, February 28). When Playing Great Is Not Enough: Developing Learner Identities In (Under)Graduate Classical Musicians. Guest lecture, Sibelius Academy’s Researcher Lecture Series (Finland).

López-Íñiguez, G. (2019, September 18). Towards A Learner Identity In Music. Guest lecture, DocMus Series on Musical Performance Studies, SibA (Finland).

López-Íñiguez, G. (2019, June 11). Engaging Music Students In Professional Life: Highlights Of An Employability Intervention. Invited talk, Future of Work Institute, Curtin University, Perth (Australia).

López-Íñiguez, G. (2019, March 12). Presenting My Research Project On Musician’s Learning Identity. Invited talk, Doctoral Seminar, Royal Northern College of Music, Manchester (UK).

Panel discussions

3.5.2019 “Did Music Education Prepare Me For My Career? A Panel With Multi-Profiled Musicians”. Seminar hosted at Wegelius Hall, Sibelius Academy, Helsinki (Finland). Guest speakers: Tomas Djupsjöbacka, Markus Hohti, Anssi Karttunen (via video), Dr. Juho Laitinen, Dr. Guadalupe López-Íñiguez, Markku Luolajan-Mikkola, Heidi Peltoniemi, Prof. Martti Rousi. Organised by Uniarts’ CERADA, and the research initiative Developing Employability (Australia).

12.11.2018 “Transforming Musicianship: Understanding C19th Historical Style and its Implications for Learning’. Seminar hosted at Wegelius Hall, Sibelius Academy, Helsinki (Finland). Speakers: Claire Holden (keynote, University of Oxford, United Kingdom); George Kennaway (keynote, University of Oxford, United Kingdom); Tuija Hakkila and Guadalupe López-Íñiguez (Sibelius Academy, Finland). Organised by Uniarts’ CERADA, Uniarts’ CfAr, and the University of Oxford (United Kingdom).

Videos

Musicians’ career preparedness (TBA)

Musician’s identity and professional learning pathways (TBA)

Musicians’ self-regulation for performance optimisation (TBA)

Media coverage

Video Interview (12.11.2021) on musicians’ motivation and emotion regulation for AEPMIM society, 25 minutes (Spain).

TV Interview (4.2.2021) on professional music education at the program Bona Vesprada, 10 minutes, Valencia (Spain).

Magazine Review (1.11.2020) of my co-edited book on student-centeredness in music at Melómano (Spain).

Magazine Review (1.10.2020) of my co-edited book on student-centeredness in music at Léeme (Spain).

Newspaper Review (14.1.2020) of my article published in the journal of Music Education Research on musicians’ careers at the Campus Review (Australia).

Radio Interview (21.9.2019) on musicians’ learning mindsets at the program De Banda a Banda, 15 minutes, Valencia (Spain).

Refereed conference paper presentations

López-Íñiguez, G., & Bennett, D. (2022, July). Transformative impacts in the existing curriculum: A study of developing learner agency and broadening career horizons. Paper accepted at the 24th Commission on the Education of the Professional Musician (CEPROM). Virtual pre-conference. 

López-Íñiguez, G., & Coutts, L. (2020, July). Embracing a learner identity: An Autoethnographic duet exploring disruptive critical incidents in instrumental music pedagogy. Paper presented at the 23rd Commission on the Education of the Professional Musician (CEPROM). Oulu (Finland).

López-Íñiguez, G., & Bennett, D. (2019, July). Engaging Music Students in the Professional Life: The Role of Learning Identity. Paper presented at the 7th International Symposium on Performance Science (ISPS). Melbourne (Australia).

López-Íñiguez, G., & McPherson, G. (2019, July). Intra-individual Change and Variability in Intentional Self-Regulation: A Concert Cellist Optimizing Performance. Paper presented at the 7th International Symposium on Performance Science (ISPS). Melbourne (Australia).

Concerts

The PI organised two main events with chamber music recitals related to the sub-study with her research participants for data collection (details omitted for the pseudonymization of participants):

February 2021, Sibelius Academy’s Small Hall, Helsinki (Finland).

May 2021, Musiikkitalo’s Organ Hall, Helsinki (Finland).

The PI organised the following concerts related to the intra-individual sub-study of the project, for data collection:

11.11.2018, Musiikkitalo’s Organ Hall, Helsinki (Finland).

25.10.2018 Moscow Philharmonic Society’s Small Hall, Moscow (Russia).

10.9.2018 Inaugural concert at the Conference ‘Perspectives on Historically Informed Practices in Music Conference’, Faculty of Music, University of Oxford (United Kingdom).

Visiting fellowships

2019 Melbourne Conservatorium, University of Melbourne (Australia)

2019 Future of Work Institute, Curtin University, Perth (Australia)

2019 Queensland Conservatorium, Griffith University, Brisbane (Australia)

2020 Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge (United Kingdom)

Contact information for the project

    • Guadalupe López Íñiguez

    • Academy Research Fellow, MuTri-tohtorikoulu, Sibelius Academy
      Part-time teacher, MuTri-tohtorikoulu, Sibelius Academy
      Part-time teacher, Piano, harmonikka, kitara ja kantele, Sibelius Academy
      Visiting researcher, Taidekasvatuksen tutkimuksen tk CERADA, Research hub

Project name

Transforming Musicianship – Musicians' Learner Identity

Time

01/2018-12/2021

Funder

Academy of Finland