Conservatoire alumni as mentors in instrumental music teacher education: a preliminary study

Shaw, Luan (2023) Conservatoire alumni as mentors in instrumental music teacher education: a preliminary study. Teachers and Teaching: Theory and Practice. ISSN 1470-1278

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It has been argued that conservatoires in England have a responsibility to train music educators. This article proposes that alumni could have an important role to play in contributing to their former institution’s instrumental music teacher education provision and explores how two UK conservatoire graduates with at least three years teaching experience mentored students on placements in professional teaching contexts. Through online semi-structured interviews, the two alumni reflected on their own mentoring styles, the benefits and challenges of mentoring, their prior experience of being mentored on placement as former students, and the perceived benefits of reciprocal learning through mentorship. Findings suggest that alumni believe they can offer valuable insights into early instrumental teaching careers. Though long-established teachers are often chosen to be mentors, arguably, alumni are more relatable as workplace role models for current students. Furthermore, it is proposed that mentor schemes offered in conjunction with employers enable conservatoires to continue to support instrumental teacher development long after their students have graduated, since reciprocal learning processes lead mentors to reflect on their own practice, deepening their pedagogical knowledge and metacognitive awareness.

Item Type: Article
Identification Number:
3 May 2023Accepted
9 May 2023Published Online
Uncontrolled Keywords: Conservatoire, instrumental teacher education, instrumental teacher training, alumni as mentors, mentoring in music education, music education workforce
Subjects: CAH22 - education and teaching > CAH22-01 - education and teaching > CAH22-01-01 - education
CAH22 - education and teaching > CAH22-01 - education and teaching > CAH22-01-02 - teacher training
CAH25 - design, and creative and performing arts > CAH25-02 - performing arts > CAH25-02-02 - music
Divisions: Faculty of Arts, Design and Media > Royal Birmingham Conservatoire > Royal Birmingham Conservatoire - Music
Depositing User: Luan Shaw
Date Deposited: 11 May 2023 09:37
Last Modified: 11 May 2023 09:37

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