DR. WEI SHIN LEONG

This symposium presentation situates the policy and practice of assessment in music education within Singapore based on unique confluences of local and global educational contexts. As in other school subjects, the British examination system is also present in music education, if not even more deeply entrenched. The British music examining boards first introduced their graded music examinations within “private music education” in Singapore as early as 1948 (Stead & Lum, 2014). The early semblance of music education in “public music education” within mainstream schools in the 1950s was heavily influenced by the requirements of British music examination boards. Their influence undoubtedly was, and still is, extremely significant today in what constitutes being “musically educated” in Singapore, in both the private and public sectors of music education. Withstanding the challenges of uncertainty in the 21st century, and the need for time and space for a different vision and values in education, the question “What is next?” in music education, and particularly how the policy and practice of assessment will remain or change. The presentation will also discuss findings from an 18-months research study on evaluation of music assessment tasks, lesson plans and students’ music works from Singaporean General Music Programme (GMP) classrooms. The representations of assessment of music learning gathered from this study can encourage conversations about different standards of music learning across stages, and fundamentally the aims of music education in specific Music classrooms.