Technology and Pedagogical Skills and Content Knowledge (TPASCK): A Framework for Music Teacher Education

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In English schools, music technologies are now commonly used within examination classes for young people aged 15/16 and 17/18, most often as a tool for composing music, and Music Technology now features, alongside Music, as a course for 17/18 year olds. However, technology in classes for younger secondary school pupils has always been problematic. Indeed, the most recent government report on Music in English schools (2012) indicated that this was one of the two main areas of concern in relation to work with pupils aged 11-14.

To qualify to teach Music in a maintained school, one, typically, completes a 3-year undergraduate course in a Music / Music Technology and then develops one’s pedagogical skills within a one-year teacher education course. Qualified Teacher Status is gained by demonstrating competence in areas prescribed by the government. The latest framework - of 2012 - makes no mention of technology, thus, each partnership decides what is covered, and when and how ICT is included in the course.

This is the backdrop to my work as leader of a one-year Secondary Music course for pre-service teachers in England. Since 2006 I have been carrying out formal research into the practice and thinking of novice teachers on my course in relation to music technology. I have collected data from each cohort through questionnaires and discussion groups; this is viewed in relation to the trainee teachers’ practical and written assignments, which include reflections on their teaching. The research has impacted upon my thinking, and the design of the course, of which music technology is now a key part. Recently, this longitudinal study has supported my development of a new conceptual framework for music teacher education/teaching and technology, which is built upon Mishra and Koehler’s (2006) generic Technology and Pedagogical Content Knowledge (TPACK) model.

In this paper I will present my model and explain how it has impacted upon the music initial teacher education course that I lead. The paper will draw upon data from all cohorts of student teachers, 2006 to present day. Some key issues that will be discussed are the importance of recognising and responding to students’ interests when working with technologies, and the continued problem of lack of professional development related to music technology for in-service teachers. Whilst my model was developed within an English context, I suggest that it is applicable to teacher educators and music teachers in many other countries.

Original languageEnglish
Publication statusUnpublished - 2016
EventInternational Society of Music Education (ISME) 32nd World Conference on Music Education - Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, Glasgow, United Kingdom
Duration: 24 Jul 201629 Nov 2016


ConferenceInternational Society of Music Education (ISME) 32nd World Conference on Music Education
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


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  • TPACK and Music Teacher Education

    Gall, M., 29 Dec 2016, The Routledge Companion to Music, Technology, and Education. King, A., Himonides, E. & Ruthmann, A. (eds.). Abingdon/New York: Routledge, p. 305-318 14 p.

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter in a book

    Open Access

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