An investigation into music in the Australian arts key learning area in the Victorian Curriculum and Standards Framework with reference to international developments

Watson, A 1998, An investigation into music in the Australian arts key learning area in the Victorian Curriculum and Standards Framework with reference to international developments, Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Industry, Professional and Adult Education, RMIT University.


Document type: Thesis
Collection: Theses

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Title An investigation into music in the Australian arts key learning area in the Victorian Curriculum and Standards Framework with reference to international developments
Author(s) Watson, A
Year 1998
Abstract This study has investigated the issues and debate pertinent to the development of the Australian Arts Key Learning Area, with a specific focus on Music, in the Victorian Curriculum and Standards Framework. This has been undertaken with reference to international developments. The study focussed on two areas: (a) the characteristics of the Arts Key Learning Area (and specifically Music) in the Victorian Curriculum and Standards Framework and, (b) the characteristics and relationships of Music to other Arts disciplines in the design of "national curricula" in Australia and other countries.

The study combined four major sources of data. These were:
1. A review of literature about "national curricula" and Arts "national curricula" from Australia, Victoria and internationally
2. A review of Victorian Arts curricula and support documents since 1981, and Australian and Victorian Arts curricula reports since 1977
3. Responses to a questionnaire completed by representatives of Music professional associations in all member countries of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development OECD and affiliated countries of the International Society for Music Education (ISME), and
4. Interviews with Arts and Music writers and other personnel who contributed to the development of the following documents: A Statement on the Arts for Australian Schools; The Arts - a Curriculum Profile for Australian Schools; Arts Curriculum and Standards Framework (Arts CSF); Arts Course Advice.

The study was conducted during· the development and implementation phase of the Curriculum and Standards Framework and Arts Course Advice (a Victorian support document) and during intensive Australia-wide Professional Development activities that took place between 1994 and 1996.

The decision to interview only those personnel involved in the construction of the documents listed above is a recognised limitation. This study has gathered the knowledge of the Arts Educators responsible for the design and development of the documents cited as opposed to classroom teachers who are required by a Victorian Government law to implement the Arts CSF. A further study would be necessary to investigate teachers' interpretation and subsequent implementation of the Arts CSF.

A survey involving all member countries of the OECD and countries affiliated with ISME sought information related to Arts Education, and specifically Music Education, in terms of "national curricula". This survey elicited information on the compulsory nature of "national curricula"; the schools years covered by "national curricula"; the subjects, together with the reasons for their inclusion; the approach (if any) to Multi-Arts in "national curricula"; and the criteria used by teachers to describe and report the standard achieved by students in the subject of Music in "national curricula".

The interview questions posed of those involved in the design and development of the Australian and Victorian current documents addressed four topics. These were:
• suggestions of modifications that might be made to the Australian and Victorian Arts documents, and specifically the Music strand, if an opportunity were available
• which Arts subjects should be included in an Australian Arts Key Learning Area
• the contribution of Multi-Arts to the Australian and Victorian Arts documents, and
• the place of ranked Performance Standards and their possible effects on Music teaching and learning.

Responses to the Australian and Victorian interviews are collated under three major headings. These are the development of the Victorian Arts CSF with special reference to the development of the Music strand; the construction of an Arts Key Leaming Area; and the varying types of standards used in the Arts.

The discussion chapter of this study is structured in three sections. Section one considers the characteristics of an Arts Learning Area. Section two focusses on the issue of setting standards in education and the place of standards in Arts Education. The final section addresses two topics associated with the implementation of the Victorian Arts CSF, specifically, and the Victorian CSF in general.

The study concludes with a consideration of issues according to an international focus and an Australian/Victorian focus. Twenty-two recommendations for further research conclude the study.
Degree Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Institution RMIT University
School, Department or Centre Industry, Professional and Adult Education
Keyword(s) Curriculum and Standards Frameworks
Music education
Victoria, Australia
Secondary education
Standards in education
Arts key learning area
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Created: Mon, 22 Aug 2016, 16:10:07 EST by Keely Chapman
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