Call for Papers

Colloquium 28: Music Education and Cultural Context

Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ, USA
June 15-18, 2016

MayDay Group  Colloquium 28 focuses on Action Ideal #I:

  1. All music and music learning is culturally situated. Diverse communities generate and sustain diverse musical meanings, values, and individual practices. Thus, music learning works best when we are mindful, reflective, and critically aware of cultural contexts.

Only a partial musical reality is presented if musical concepts, information, and skills are taught without regard to their place within larger cultural contexts. Formal education in music must help students become independent music makers who are culturally adaptive and critically reflective.


Abstracts must demonstrate a connection to the Action Ideal. Guiding questions that colloquium presenters might consider include (but are not restricted to):

  1. How can we continue to teach within the expectations of schooling for such things as “standards” and “accountability” while simultaneously empowering students to engage critically with music outside of their formal instruction?
  2. What are the characteristics of programs, examples, and models that produce independent and culturally adaptive musical engagement? How might we better recognize and promote these characteristics in the development of musical autonomy and musical participation?
  3. How can educational institutions and programs best strengthen the performative skills of their musicians in diverse cultural styles, while also developing corresponding receptive, critical, and reflective skills among their students and audiences alike?
  4. How can we assist people to develop musical agency that allows them to respect and adapt to ever-changing musical realities?
  5. What philosophical or curricular frameworks support culturally-mindful music teaching and learning? On what basis might depth versus breadth decisions be based? What might bi- or multi-musicality mean in the context of cultural mindfulness?


Presentations — better understood at MayDay Group Colloquia as provocations — are designed to inspire discussion. Therefore, each presenter will be allocated 45 minutes, to include no more than 30 minutes for the presentation and no fewer than 15 minutes for discussion.


  • Submit a proposal of 700-800 words (references not included in word count) as an email attachment by January 15, 2016 January 31st, to:
  • State your name, affiliation, email address, and other contact information in the body of the email only.
  • Applicants who are accepted to present will be notified by February 15, 2016. February 27th. Accepted applicants must confirm their acceptance through paid registration within four weeks or forfeit their acceptance. Skype presentations cannot be accommodated this year.
  • Abstracts are anonymously-reviewed by committee according to a standardized rubric that includes items such as: connection to Action Ideal #1, contribution to the profession, inclusion of and contribution to theory, and clarity of thought/ expression. Applicants are strongly encouraged to use inclusive language.

Questions may be addressed to: