Distance Education


Distance Keyboard Lessons in an Inuit Community

Using videoconference technology, a group of young Inuit students were taught weekly music keyboard lessons over a four-year period. A study was designed to examine how technological and cultural aspects prompted changes in the teaching strategies, and how this affected student achievement. Results indicate that although teaching techniques needed to be altered in order to accommodate the medium and allow for cultural specificities, the students were able to achieve a high level of success. The reasons for their progress offer much insight into distance teaching under these conditions (Parkes & Comeau, 2015).

On-site and Distance Piano Teaching

This study was designed to examine how distance piano teaching might affect the verbal and physical behaviours of the teacher, the student and the participating parent during a piano lesson. Over a year, weekly 30-minute piano lessons were taught to two young beginner students, one on-site and one at a distance. The analysis showed that distance teaching did not slow down a beginner student’s progress and the physical contact often given by a teacher during on-site lessons did not seem to be necessary for the natural development of the distance student. The behavioral analysis revealed that in most aspects, distance and in-studio teaching were remarkably similar. However, it was observed that during distance lessons the parent’s participation was greatly increased. Therefore we concluded that in the case of individual piano lessons, additional assistance is required from the parent to overcome restrictions imposed by distance (Comeau, 2015).