Research Project

RDAM has engaged in a pedagogical research project linked to the development of Distance Learning

When RDAM started working with Distance Learning it was quickly identified that teaching and instruction using Distance Learning is different from ordinary one-to-one teaching. It requires a new way pedagogical approach. Furthermore, RDAM wishes to explore whether the technology allows for new educational forms that may expand the educational repertoire, e.g. peer-to-peer activities among students. 

Research Project

The project is titled:Changing practices and new pedagogical awareness related to using the advanced videoconferencing in instrumental teaching in the field of higher music education

New pedagogical approaches are necessary, when using Distance Learning:

  • The very small time delay makes simultaneous singing, conducting and playing along impossible
  • The lack of physical presence 
  • The possible discomfort of being on air

In order to investigate these issues more closely, RDAM has engaged in a research project together with a specialized research team from Aalborg University.

The research project links art communication, education, pedagogy and scientific research in a unique way. The project at RDAM is destined to map out the possibilities for a development of the pedagogical/technical platform for instrumental Distance Learning.

In the research project the traditional pedagogy and the everyday practice between students and teachers is challenged in a new Distance learning setting. What are the challenges that are faced and what are the subsequent needs for qualified competence building for teachers and technicians?

Partners in the Research project

The Royal Danish Academy is proud to boast its close collaboration in the research project with two of the world’s leading music academies.

Both academies have been forerunners in the development and use of Distance Learning in higher Music Education.

New World Symphony Orchestra

The New World Symphony (NWS) was founded in 1987 by Michael Tilson Thomas, with the purpose of preparing gifted music graduates for leadership position in orchestras and ensembles.
NWS is housed in a building designed by Frank Gehry. The building is equipped with cutting edge technology and facilities.

NWS differs from other prominent music academies and conservatories as it does not have in-house faculty members. Subsequently, Distance Learning has been used by NWS for the last ten years to connect teachers and coaches with their students.

Cleveland Institute of Music

Cleveland institute of Music (CIM) is considered to be one of America’s leading music schools. CIM has a close collaboration with Case Western Reserve University and the Cleveland Orchestra. Based in University Circle in Cleveland, Ohio, CIM is part of an intellectual, research and arts-based community in Cleveland.

CIM has a long tradition for working with Distance Learning technologies in higher music education.

Project Outline

  • 40 sessions/observations 
  • Interviews with participation students and teachers 
  • Reflections and workshops
Faculty members from RDAM conduct distance learning lessons on a regular basis around every two weeks with the same students at the partner institutions.

The sessions are observed by the research team and recorded for later analysis. Based on the video recording, the researcher conducts interviews with the teachers and students.
The knowledge gained from the sessions and interviews are channelled into the next sessions, hereby refining and developing their teaching methods.

In between sessions participating teachers meet in workshops to share experiences and to develop new ideas and thoughts. The workshops are also an opportunity for teachers and technical staff members to meet and share their experiences.

The research project has two outputs: 

  1. Development of the teachers, engineers and students skills and awareness within distance learning and
  2. Scientific papers/presentations presenting the research results on the development of new teaching methods in Distance Learning.

These two elements will be boiled down to a “easy to read” guide for new and experienced distance learning teachers.

The Research Team 

Karin Levinsen (Assoc. Prof.), Mie Buhl (Prof.) and Rikke Ørngreen (Assoc. Prof.) from the Faculty of Humanities, Aalborg University, working within IT and Learning in an educational design perspective.

In general, they have a strong interest in digital productions in a multimodal learning perspective, in both a-synchronic and synchronic forms. Their collective research and educational experience within the videoconferencing field includes university level teaching in various formats such as: Supervision (group and individually), class teaching (opponent seminars, dialog based lectures, Q&A, student project presentations, student arranged learning session with supervision), and project and problem based learning.