One of the main ways that our students demonstrate musical understanding is through singing.
We can tell if they have the music in their minds when they can produce it with their voices.
When my wife pointed out an article about Dr. Peter Pfordresher and his research into singing accuracy, I perked right up!
Who is Dr. Pfordresher & what is he working on?
Dr. Pfordresher is one of the researchers working on the Seattle Singing Accuracy Protocol, which is an online test to evaluate the pitch accuracy of one's singing.
The test basically tells how well or poorly a person can repeat back several patterns of pitches.
And, although the SSAP focusses on pitch accuracy, Dr. Pfordresher and his colleagues are hoping that the next steps in their research will provide insight into the reasons for and possible solutions to poor pitch matching.
How will this impact my work as a music educator?
Technology can never take the place of a skilled music teacher listening and responding in real time to the music that our students are making.
At the same time, technology has offered some great benefits to the mechanics of teaching.
(I mean, in my lifetime, teachers have gone from the record player to the mp3 imbedded into a smartboard® presentation!)
After my chat with Dr. Pfordresher, I'm feeling like this could be a valuable tool in providing specific, objective feedback about our students' singing.
And, it looks like NAfME is seeing some potential in this research, too; the association is funding the project!
Ready for the interview?! Here it is!
Ultimately, student success is our goal, and If technology like this will help our students to become successful, then I say "have at it!" We'll see what the future holds.
In the mean time, I'm excited for you to hear this conversation...
Talk to me!
What do you think about the work Dr. Pfordresher and his colleagues are doing? Do you think this project has the potential to support the work you do in your classroom? (Tell me in the comments below!)