EjSBS - The European Journal of Social & Behavioural Sciences

The European Journal of Social & Behavioural Sciences

Online ISSN: 2301-2218
European Publisher

‘Singing is No Longer Forbidden to Me – It’s Like Part of My Human Dignity Has Been Restored.’ Adult Non-Singers Learning To Sing: An Explorative Intervention Study


Singing is a universal activity, but many people believe that they are non-singers, or tone deaf, which may be interpreted as a singing disability. Singing is often seen as an on-off phenomenon: either you can sing or cannot. Music education contains practices which emphasize innate abilities instead of broader views offered in modern learning theories. We present the learning results of ten adult non-singers who were taught to sing in an intervention study using a socio-culturally oriented student-activating and process-oriented framework. Because of their negative singing experiences in childhood, all of the participants suffered from serious emotional and belief system blocks when starting the project. Most of them also had grave perceptual problems while singing as well as production blocks, e.g. a narrow voice range. In the relatively short intervention, the participants made remarkable singing progress. Further, the participants started to enjoy singing and to see themselves as people who sing. In the Karma musicality test, the participants received mostly average or high scores. The study shows that singing is a multifaceted, deeply culturally rooted phenomenon, and problems in singing are not to be reduced to individual bases. Correspondingly, music education should be developed according to recent learning studies.

Keywords: Adult non-singerssinging pedagogysocio-cultural approach

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About this article

Published online: 20.01.2015
Pages: 6-24
Publisher: Future Academy
In: Volume 12, Issue 1
DOI: 10.15405/ejsbs.149
Online ISSN: 2301-2218
Article Type: Original Research
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