Participatory culture and informal music learning through video creation in the curriculum | Intellect Skip to content
Volume 8, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 1752-6299
  • E-ISSN: 1752-6302



With the emergence of YouTube, social media and video creation technologies, music education can expand its scope to include video-based music creation. This multimodal study examines how undergraduate music education students created music videos during an informal music learning project in an introduction to music education and technology course at a large, Midwestern, public university. Data were collected in three modes: observation of students’ music video projects, a web survey including both quantitative and qualitative questions, and student interviews. Excerpts from the projects were shown during class and students were encouraged to share their videos with others on the Internet thus developing a community in the classroom that expanded through social media. Overall, students reacted positively to creating music videos as part of the curriculum. The projects led to a self-reported sense of accomplishment and satisfaction for almost all of the respondents. Because the students were given the opportunity to create music videos on their own terms, a diversity of video types emerged: covers, instrumental explorations, activism and awareness videos, musical artistic statements and virtual ensemble arrangements. The respondents used a variety of hardware and software, approaches to recording and musical genres. The informal music learning practice of ‘dropping students in the deep end’ proved to be initially intimidating, but ultimately freeing.


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