Theses Doctoral

An Examination of the Creative Aspects of Music Composition Lessons With a Focus on the Use of Modeling

Oh, Hyun Ji

Teacher modeling is a widely used pedagogical approach in music education. Several studies have sought to assess the effectiveness of modeling strategies on instrumental learning and have examined the effects of modeling. Nonetheless, not enough scholarly attention has been paid to the comparative effectiveness of such strategies when they are used to teach music composition during one-on-one lessons. The majority of existing research has focused on the successful use of composing techniques as an efficient way of reinforcing composition skills, not as a means of stimulating a learner’s creativity.

The purpose of this study is to provide a comprehensive understanding of the modeling strategies that are being used by music composition teachers. The composition teachers (N = 15) who have been teaching composition in a one-on-one setting at university for five years or more participated in semi-structured, one-on-one interviews.

The study found that in composition lessons, modeling was mainly used for two different purposes, which include “modeling for exercise” and “modeling for actual composing.” In the case of using “modeling for exercise,” all the composers agreed that modeling works as a positive influence on the students by helping them learn musical concepts through imitation. However, in the case of using modeling for actual composing related to creativity, the opinions were varied. The study also found that choosing the appropriate timing, amount, and types of modeling play a crucial role in using modeling strategies while avoiding any possible negative effects.


  • thumnail for OH_tc.columbia_0055E_11082.pdf OH_tc.columbia_0055E_11082.pdf application/pdf 1.27 MB Download File

More About This Work

Academic Units
Arts and Humanities
Thesis Advisors
Abeles, Harold F.
Goffi-Fynn, Jeanne Corinne
Ed.D., Teachers College, Columbia University
Published Here
June 22, 2020