British Journal of Music Education

The teaching of music in the primary school by the non-music specialist

Hilary Holden a1 and Stuart Button a2
a1 Tees Valley Music Service, Bishopton Road West, Stockton-on-Tees, TS19 0QH, UK
a2 University of Durham, Durham, DH1 1TA, UK

Article author query
holden h   [Google Scholar] 
button s   [Google Scholar] 


This article reports on an investigation of the teaching of music by non-music specialists in the primary school. In particular, it examines attitudes to teaching music, factors affecting teachers' confidence, the relationship between confidence and training, support for music teaching, teaching experience and musical background. The non-specialist teachers taking part in this survey were chosen from twelve schools across one Local Education Authority (LEA). The attitudes and views on teaching music of 71 teachers were obtained through a questionnaire survey and follow-up interviews. The findings of this survey show that there is much work still to be done in providing non-specialists with effective long-term training and support to increase their music skills, subject knowledge, and confidence, to enable them to make a more marked difference to children's musical education.