When asked to develop a graduate-level Research Methods for Music Performers course at Chapman University, the Performing Arts Librarian found himself in a predicament. As the librarian for a performance-focused conservatory, using the model of Music Bibliography that he had experienced as a musicology graduate student did not need seem appropriate for his student population. Moreover, he did not have the same library resources as he had had when at a major research institution. What followed was not only a search into the existing literature on music bibliography, but also involved rethinking the meaning of the course and its application for aspiring professional musicians. Through conversations with pedagogues, librarians, and music faculty, he found an avenue through which to create a meaningful course for his students. The blank slate with which to create the course provided the opportunity to search for new pedagogical approaches, content, and technologies with which to enhance student learning.
In this talk, I will discuss my process of discovery and decision making and will end with a case study of the experience from the resulting course. Some of major themes will be: making research relevant to performers; demystifying the scholarly conversation in music scholarship; different approaches to assigned readings; and reconsidering the role of Wikipedia as a participatory platform. I hope that this talk will achieve the goals of a) inspiring other music librarians to reconsider their approaches to teaching music bibliography in order to reinvigorate their teaching and engage their students in learning, and b) guiding music librarians tasked with creating such a course with a meaningful place to start envisioning their course.
At the end of my talk, I will open up discussion with the attendees about their experiences and thoughts regarding teaching Music Bibliography or Research Methods in Music courses at their institutions.
Greene, Taylor. “Reimagining the Graduate Music Bibliography Course for Music Performer.” Presentation at Music Library Association California Chapter’s 7th Annual Meeting, Stanford, CA, September 2019.