Music Education for Seminarians in Toronto's Christian Theological Colleges and Seminaries
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Despite music’s importance during Christian worship and the responsibility of ordained ministers to organize and implement worship, limited research has been conducted on music education in Canadian seminaries. This study examines music education at nine Catholic and Protestant theological colleges and seminaries in Toronto. In-classroom education and education as part of the formation process is analyzed to determine: 1) the structure of seminarian music education curricula, 2) the qualifications of seminary music educators, 3) the quantity of music education as it relates to key skills relevant to ordained ministry, and 4) the perceived effectiveness of seminarians’ education in those key skills. Interviews, using a mixed method set of questions, were conducted with informants from each institution. Analysis indicates that most seminaries provide an insufficient quantity and quality of music education. Differences between ecclesiastical traditions revealed a greater emphasis on performance skills at Catholic seminaries and a greater emphasis on the understanding of congregational song at Protestant seminaries. Quantity of education was also determined to be a significant indicator of educational quality. These results suggest that most seminaries should provide a greater quantity of music education during the formation process that focuses on the skills most relevant to its ecclesiastical tradition.
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