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Bendik Fredriksen: Leaving the music classroom

Why do music teachers in Norwegian compulsory education quit teaching music?

Fagområde: Musikkpedagogikk


A considerable amount of music teachers in Norwegian compulsory education have little or no formal qualifications in music, and existing research indicates that many music teachers do not wish to work in compulsory education. To provide all students in the Norwegian school with adequate music lessons it is necessary to retain the qualified music teachers.

The purpose of the project is to investigate why teachers with formal competence in music quit teaching music for the benefit of other tasks within the school. Previous research points out several factors, as knowledge/preparation, confidence, insufficient resources and facilities, noise, support and the identity conflict between being a teacher or a musician.

The Norwegian school system has gone through some rather substantial changes the last decades, with an emphasis on core subjects as mathematics and Norwegian, and basic skills, as reading and writing. An important question is how these changes influence the work life of the music teachers?

The project is a qualitative study of a small group of teachers with formal qualifications in music, who chose to leave the music subject wholly or in part. The interviews are analyzed through narrative analysis and discourse analysis, informed by performance theory.

The dissertation

Title: Leaving the Music Classroom. A study of attrition from music teaching in Norwegian compulsory school.

The dissertation is a monograph, and it is written in English.

The dissertation is available in NMH's digital archive.

Published: Sep 18, 2015 — Last updated: Feb 21, 2024