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Graham F Welch - Chair of Music Education - UCL Institute of Education

Adam Ockelford - Director Applied Music Research Centre University of Roehampton

Able vs. Disabled vs. Differently Abled

Musical Benefits for those with Special Needs and Disabilities


● Happen because of the brain’s architecture that links special communities of cells and its
core properties such as neuromodulation and neuroplasticity

Human Bodymind = three integrated systems


● Nervous
● Endocrine
● Immune

Music Processing Networks


● Basic auditory pathway - basic acoustic features of music
● Musical-syntactic network - higher order musical features
● Attention and working memory network - keeping track of music in time
● Episodic memory network - recognizing music and recalling memories
● Motor network - playing, singing, and moving
● Reward and emotion network - concerts

Humans perceive music in at least three ways: psychoacoustic features (pitch loudness duration
and timbre), Structures (patterns and regularities), syntactic and communicative elements (the
potential for musical grammar, music as a language)

40% of blind people have perfect pitch


1 in every 10,000 of the general population have perfect pitch
10% of musicians have perfect pitch

People with ADHD can become engage in music and no longer appear to have the disorder and
calm their hyperactivity

Sung Melodies Enhance Memory

Issues
Low teacher confidence
Weaknesses in curriculum and pedagogy Insufficient support
Impact of recent education policy changes
Outcomes
Reflection
Information
Context
Support

Vision
● Improved range and quality of experiences
● More empowered, creative thinking music education workforce
● Stronger sense of a supportive learning community across the plurality of contexts

Challenges
● Policy environment
● School and setting contexts
● Fragmentation
● Communication
● Initial teacher education
● Time and money

Levers for Change


● Commitment and partnership across the music education sector
● Galvanising relationship between practice, outcome, evidence and theory
● Assets based professional development
● Clarity, diversity and energy of content
● Dynamic, provocative debate