April 17, 2011

2011 Pennsylvania Music Educators Annual Conference

Posted by Dr. Laura Guertin

And now for something completely different…

On Friday, one of my undergraduate student researches and I co-presented at the 2011 Pennsylvania Music Educators Annual Conference.  Yes, you read that correctly – I am a geologist, and I presented at a music conference.  Talk about being a fish out of water!  But it was a fantastic experience, built out of a collaboration with fellow Teaching and Learning with Technology (TLT) Fellow Ann Clements, a music educator at University Park.

Our collaboration is explained on our Teaching World Music with Geospatial Technology website.

We are a research team of four – myself, Ann, my undergraduate researcher Labanya Mookerjee, and Ann’s graduate student Teri Yerger.  We connected via phone, email, and through other forms of technology.  It wasn’t until we got to Magnolia Room D in the Hershey Convention Center that the four of us came together for the first time.  To me, this is one of the most fascinating parts of the project.  Absolutely, the resulting Google Earth files that teach elementary school students about music and culture are significant, but having the entire project collaboration take place electronically and not face-to-face is worthy to note.  As someone that works with undergraduate researchers, this is an important model for all mentors to keep in mind – that collaborations can be successful when conducted entirely online.