As we look to the trends of online music education, the majority of trend research is found in the subject of online education. This really makes sense since many more post-secondary students are impacted by general online education – 6.1 million students were enrolled in an online course in Fall 2010 according to Allen and Seaman’s 2011 report.

Educational Technology Trends

To understand more on the current trends of online education, and specifically educational technology, there are a few resources that are very helpful. The Horizon Report 2012 Higher Ed Edition (Johnson et al., 2012), which is an annual publication, presents a helpful timeline for what technology tools are currently in high use, as well as what technology will likely be utilized in post-secondary education in the next two years, as well as five years. In this current 2012 report that was based on Fall 2011 data identified unanimously by an international advisory committee, presented mobile technologies (i.e. tablets and apps) being within twelve months of adoption, game-based technologies and learning analytics within two or three years for adoption, and gesture-based computing and the “Internet of Things” being five years before adoption (Johnson et al., 2012).

Other current educational trends can be identified on educational technology websites. However, be wary of websites that are not research based, as you could be falling prey to marketing rather than established research in education technology.

Online Music Education Trends

Looking for online music education trends can lead to searching current music education journals and source books. According to a study completed by Randles, Hagen, Gottlieb, and Salvador, K. (2010),  many of the prominent articles found in the venerable and trend research New Handbook of Research on Music Teaching and Learning (2002) were published by the  British Journal of Music Education published by the Cambridge University Press, Bulletin of Council for Research in Music Education published by  the University of Illinois among others. To connect the online/technology portion to music education, many researchers are exploring historical and learning impact of music education with computer technology (Webster, 2007; 2002),  the incorporation of popular music into education (Green, 2002), ways to reposition the importance of music back into education (Benedict & Schmidt, 2012) Cathy Benedict and encouraging faculty to embrace technological change in their teaching (Allsup & Benedict, 2008).



Allen, I. E., & Seaman, J. (2011). Going the distance: Online education in the United States, 2011. Wellesley, MA: Babson Survey Research Group. Retrieved from
Allsup, R. E., & Benedict, C. (2008). The problems of band : An inquiry into the future of instrumental music education. Philosophy of Music Education Review, 16(2), 156–173. doi:10.1353/pme.0.0009
Benedict, C. & Schmidt, P. (2011). The Politics of Not Knowing: The Disappearing Act of an Education in Music.  Journal of Curriculum Theorizing, 27, (3), pp. 134-148.
Colwell, R., & Richardson, C. (Eds.). (2002). The New Handbook of Research on Music Teaching and Learning: A Project of the Music Educators National Conference. Oxford University Press.
Green, L. (2002) How Popular Musicians Learn: A Way Ahead for Music Education. Aldershot, UK: Ashgate.
Johnson, L., Adams, S., & Cummins, M. (2012). NMC Horizon Report: 2012 Higher Ed Edition. Austin, TX: The New Media Consortium. Retrieved from
Randles, C., Hagen, J., Gottlieb, B., & Salvador, K. (2010). Eminence in music education research as measured in the New Handbook of Research on Music Teaching and Learning. Bulletin of the Council for Research in Music Education, 183, 65–76. Retrieved from
Webster, P. (2007). Computer-based technology and music teaching and learning: 2000-2005. In L. Bresler (ed.), The International Handbook of Research in Arts Education, (1311-1328).Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Springer. Retrieved from

Webster, P. (2002). Historical perspectives on technology and music. Music Educators Journal. 89 (1), pp. 38-43.  Retrieved from

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