An online course to be launched next year will help smooth the transition for new students at the School of Music after receiving funding from the prestigious ANU Vice-Chancellor’s Teaching Enhancement Grants Scheme.
The new course will prepare students to study Creative Musicianship, a compulsory part of the Bachelor of Music program which they begin in their first year. It will cover core areas in music theory and aural (hearing).
“Our students each year have a wide range of ability and different levels of experience,” says project leader and convenor of the Creative Musicianship program Dr Stephen Loy.
“It’s a problem that’s becoming more acute because of changes in the cohort of students each year. We’re getting more and more students who are self-taught or come from a popular music background.
“While they are great musicians, these students can find more formal approaches to the theory of music challenging, particularly in their first-year studies. This online course will give students the opportunity to go through the extra material in their own time and give them the best chance of completing their first year of Creative Musicianship with good results.”
Teaching students these fundamentals before they start their degree will also free up time for academic staff who otherwise need to spend extra time helping less experienced students develop the necessary skills.
The grant will go towards developing the course and setting up a dynamic online learning environment. Skills will be automatically assessed through the program, providing instant feedback on strengths and weaknesses.
The ANU Education Grants Scheme is designed to support the development of research-led education by ANU staff with leadership skills or potential in education, to support strategic connections between ANU and organisations outside of the higher education sector, and to support teachers in their commitment to continually improve their teaching while sustaining high quality learning at ANU.
In 2014, grants were also awarded to the College of Law, the College of Engineering and Computer Science and the College of Medicine, Biology and the Environment.