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Cultural understanding: rethinking music teacher education in a multicultural Australia

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conference contribution
posted on 2006-01-01, 00:00 authored by Dawn JosephDawn Joseph
This paper provides a multicultural perspective to music education in Australia and makes recommendations for the creation of more suitable intercultural training programs in Australian universities. It explores issues of multiculturalism in higher education institutions and argues that music education is a useful platform to address and rethink cultural diversity, where difference can be celebrated. Within Australian multicultural society, the rights and traditions of all people are recognized, respected and included. In this process, higher education institutions are challenged to prepare student teachers to meet the needs of society. This involves cultural understanding and the creation of multicultural curricula. From reflecting on current music education programs offered at Deakin University, Melbourne, it is argued that there is need to rethink current approaches to music education pedagogy. Although there are attempts to have an all inclusive approach in teacher training, the music curriculum is still trapped in the potpourri effect of trying to create culturally responsive teachers for every permutation of the multicultural classroom. When Australian society, ideally approaches true styles of multicultural music, teachers and students will celebrate the rich diversity of this nation.



International Society for Music Education. World Conference (27th : 2006 : Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)


621 - 646


International Society for Music Education


Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Place of publication

Nedlands, WA

Start date


End date









Conference also titled: Kul ISME 2006. ISME world conference 2006. International Society for Music Education world conference 2006. Conference theme Sentuhan (touch) aims to touch individuals from different walks of life, to transcend cultural and racial barriersEvery reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in Deakin Research Online. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact

Publication classification

E1 Full written paper - refereed; E Conference publication

Copyright notice

2006, ISME


W Sims, R Tahir

Title of proceedings

Sentuhan: Proceedings of the 27th World Conference of the International Society for Music Education

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