Music teaching and learning online: Considering YouTube instructional videos | Intellect Skip to content
Volume 5, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 1752-7066
  • E-ISSN: 1752-7074


This article is the initial foray into a long-term comprehensive collaborative investigation of online music teaching and learning. We considered representative YouTube videos (N=40) from five folk/traditional music websites for pedagogical and musical content. Video selection and categorization included banjo (n=10), fiddle (n=10), guitar (n=10) and mandolin (n=10) lessons. Content analysis factors took account of (1) video characteristics (length, teacher talktime), (2) instructor characteristics (gender, age, ethnicity), (3) musical content and (4) teaching methods. Results indicated that the majority of the selected videos were geared towards beginners and that instructors tended to be white, middle aged males. Videos also included many forms of aural reinforcement, modelling, technique-based instruction and physiological prompts. Opportunities for improvisation, however, were infrequent.


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