Understanding Melodic Dictation via Experimental Methods

Last month I received a copy of The Routledge Companion to Aural Skills Pedagogy featuring a chapter titled “Understanding Melodic Dictation via Experimental Methods” by yours truly! I wrote this chapter with the hopes of breaking down the argument as to why aural skills researchers might adopt tools from cognitive psychology and computational musicology to help understand melodic dictation. I didn’t write about it right when I got the book because I wanted to post about it in order to help advertise an event surrounding the release of the book next week where several of the authors are going to be talking about their chapters.

The TL;DR of my chapter it is that tools from the sciences can really help clarify our thinking surrounding what we as aural skills teachers might consider as reasonable or even doable for our students. There is so much going on when it comes to thinking about melodic dictation that to really study it, I feel you need to slow down and formalize all of your assumptions.

In my opinion, there is no better way to get to the root of a perceptual question other than trying to incorporate both computational and experimental tools. The chapter is hopefully enough to either get people excited about combining music cognition and aural skills or put them off of the amount of work that really goes into it.

Please get in touch if you’re having trouble obtaining a copy.

Here’s the reference.

  title={Understanding Melodic Dictation via Experimental Methods},
  author={Baker, David John},
  booktitle={The Routledge Companion to Aural Skills Pedagogy},
  editor={Kent D. Cleland and Paul Fleet}