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Music Education in New Zealand Society: Exploring a Meaningful Education

Music has been embedded in cultures throughout history, becoming integral to everyday life. During the last century, scientists have discovered an astonishing link between musical exposure and neurological function. Scientific studies demonstrate that listening to and performing music engages nearly every area of the brain, improving cognitive function, memory and general well-being, suggesting neurological, social and psychological benefits. Despite these discoveries, research indicates that the role of music within New Zealand’s education system has stagnated, being underfunded and undervalued by successive governments. Music is now often perceived as an extracurricular activity, and meaningful music education has become a luxury activity for those who can afford it. This thesis will outline an account of the role of music in ancient and contemporary cultures, providing historical proof of music’s pre-eminence in the thinking, philosophy and educational activities of civilisations. The benefits of a meaningful musical education will be explored through a comprehensive literature review based on scientific and statistical research. Governmental and public attitudes towards music will also be explored, in order to question the role and value of music education in New Zealand and more broadly in Western society.
Type of thesis
Browne, J. (2017). Music Education in New Zealand Society: Exploring a Meaningful Education (Thesis, Master of Arts (MA)). University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10289/11574
University of Waikato
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