Qualitative Research Methodology in Music Education

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This chapter reviews the basic theory and method of qualitative research in music education. Qualitative approaches come with various names and descriptions: case study, field study, ethnographic research, naturalistic, phenomenological, interpretive, symbolic interactionist, or just plain descriptive. The roots of qualitative research methods can be traced to ethnography and sociological fieldwork as well as literary criticism, biography, and journalism. Just as music and education can be traced back across the centuries ultimately to the crude and custom-driven habits of primitive societies, qualitative inquiry has its roots in the intuitive and survivalist behavior of early peoples. Music educators increasingly drew from philosophers and social scientists to codify research procedures. Researchers interested in the uniqueness of particular teaching or learning find value in qualitative studies because the design allows or demands extra attention to physical, temporal, historical, social, political, economic, and aesthetic contexts.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCritical Essays in Music Education
EditorsMarvelene C Moore
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9781315095257
ISBN (Print)9780754629429
StatePublished - Jan 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences

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