Excellence in Learning and Teaching: Fostering altruism, empathy (myötätunto) and equity through music

Sharon Lierse

    Research output: Contribution to conferenceConference paper presented at Conference (not in Proceedings)peer-review


    Excellence in learning and teaching is an area of global importance. Education is an area of priority for many countries and are heavily investing their resources into how to improve standards through curriculum reform, testing and policy changes. One trend has been to focus on getting the basics right first, that, is benchmarking literacy and numeracy against students, schools, regions and countries. Consequently, subjects such as music have then been placed on the periphery of left off completely because the subject no longer has inherent value in the curriculum. The shift in policy, neo-liberalist attitudes, and inattention to philosophical foundations has resulted in a disconnect between education, society and the value of skills such as altruism, empathy and equality (myötätunto). This emotion dimension of learning has been taken out of the equation. The paper will propose why music can be used as agency to develop these emotional skills which will prepare students for life in which to contribute to a better society.

    This is a development of my own research into excellence in teaching based on what characteristics are required for outstanding university lecturers. The five characteristics found were; expertise, holistic approach to learning, engaging the student, open door policy and altruism. From this altruism and empathy are being explored in more depth.
    Lierse, S. (2016). “Outstanding university lecturers: ambitious altruists or mavericks of the academy?” In process for publication Australian Journal of Teacher Education
    The field is excellence in teaching the scholarship of teaching and learning.
    Original languageEnglish
    Publication statusPublished - 29 Nov 2017
    EventEuropean Association for Practitioner Research on Improving Learning - Häme University of Applied Sciences (HAMK), Hämeenlinna , Finland
    Duration: 28 Nov 201730 Nov 2017


    ConferenceEuropean Association for Practitioner Research on Improving Learning
    Abbreviated titleEAPRIL


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