A Critical, Design Driven Approach to New Interfaces for Music Education
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Over the last years, smartphones and tablets have become attractive and ubiquitous platforms for sound and music applications, popularizing new ways of creating and manipulating digital sound. According to Krebs, founder and director of the DigiEnsemble Berlin, music apps offer people with little or no musical education access to new means of musical activity and sonic expression (Krebs 2014). This development has an impact on how music making is conceptualized and practiced and thus is relevant for music education. As practitioners increasingly incorporate multitouch tablets in their educational practice (see, e.g., Riley 2013, Krebs 2014), a critical and practice based pedagogical discourse regarding the use of these technologies is necessary, in order to allow the “reflective practitioner” to develop a systematic understanding of the diverse application and interface concepts, which can be seen as embodiments of musical concepts and ideologies. Furthermore, it can inform the design of applications for a pedagogy of listening and music/sound making, that truly leverage the potential of new technologies and meet the quality standards of music education.