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Changing Our Tune: A Music-Based Approach to Teaching, Learning, and Resolving Conflict

Changing Our Tune: A Music-Based Approach to Teaching, Learning, and Resolving Conflict

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Title: Changing Our Tune: A Music-Based Approach to Teaching, Learning, and Resolving Conflict
Author: Ippolito, Linda Marie
Abstract: The need for change within the legal profession and legal education is critical. To remain relevant and responsive to twenty-first century challenges and complexities the next generation of professionals must be creative, imaginative, and innovative thinkers. Emotional and social intelligence, the ability to collaboratively problem-solve, negotiate, and mediate complex conflict are essential skills needed for success particularly in increasingly settlement-oriented environments. Studies and reports have noted, however, that practitioners are lacking these key skills. How can these new perspectives and essential skills be taught and developed? This mixed methods research study involved five professional musicians and thirty-eight first year law school students. Data from musicians regarding effective collaborative music-making and most valued capacities for achieving optimal outcomes informed the design of a comparative teaching study that explored the effects of introducing a music-based metaphor and pedagogical approach to teaching, learning, and resolving conflict. The study provided insights into whether and how the musical ensemble metaphor might assist in shifting adversarial combative and competitive frames toward more collaborative, settlement-oriented mindsets and whether and how music-infused pedagogy might assist in developing enhanced skills and practice behaviours that lead to more desirable outcomes. Results from this initial study suggest that non-musicians in non-musical environments are able to learn from musical metaphors and concepts related to ensemble music-making and that such learning – cognitive, affective, and behavioural – translates into changed and more effective behaviour in practice. In simulated scenarios students exposed to the musical metaphor and other music-based learning appeared to outperform their colleagues not exposed to similar music-based learning. Engagement with music appears to reconnect people to their creative potential and lead them to see the efficacy of employing creative thinking in professional environments where analytical and critical thinking have generally been over-emphasized. There are indications that experiences with collaborative approaches to conflict have the potential to shift traditional norms and behaviours. This study and its results are of interest to those in the field of law, conflict resolution, those exploring arts-based teaching and learning in other professions, such as leadership and organizational behaviour, to music educators, and educators at all levels generally.
Subject: Law
Music education
Alternative dispute resolution
Keywords: Music
Art
Law
Music education
Music-based pedagogy
Arts-based education
Legal pedagogy
Legal education
Experiential learning
Experiential education
Negotiation teaching
Negotiation training
Art and law
Law and music
Conflict
Conflict resolution
Dispute resolution
Alternative dispute resolution
Problem-solving
Negotiation
Interest-based negotiation
Collaborative negotiation
Collaborative problem-solving
Conflict transformation
Legal practice
Professional development
Organizational development
Professional education
Arts-based professional education
Legal artistry
Education
Dispute settlement
Settlement negotiation
Leadership
Leadership artistry
Organizational behaviour
Type: Electronic Thesis or Dissertation
Rights: Author owns copyright, except where explicitly noted. Please contact the author directly with licensing requests.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10315/30049
Supervisor: Emond, D. Paul
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Program: Law
Exam date: 2015-03-26
Publish on: 2015-08-28

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