Archives for the month of: October, 2013

Imperatives and Challenges for Popular Music Education in Mainland China

Professor Wai-Chung Ho, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong

 Tuesday 26th November 2013, 1-2pm, Room 826

Further details from Lucy Green,

Since the 1990s mainland China’s modernisation and globalisation, together with its transition to a market economy, have created new imperatives for, and challenges to the school curriculum. Many reforms have been initiated to improve the quality of basic education in China, including areas such as the school curriculum, material incentives, teachers’ professional development, and students’ personal interests. As a result, the 2011 reform of the Curriculum Standards for Primary Education and Junior Secondary Education mark the first time that the school curriculum has officially included popular songs. With particular reference to Beijing and Shanghai, this empirical study explores Chinese adolescents’ popular music preferences in their daily lives, and to what extent and in what ways they prefer learning popular music, rather than more traditional music curricula, in schools. Data were drawn from questionnaires completed by 2,971 students in Beijing, 1,730 secondary students in Shanghai, interviews with 55 students in Beijing and 60 Shanghai students between 2011 and 2012. The findings can be interpreted as indicating that music and music education, whether in formal or informal settings, are complex cultural constructs that are reinvented through the intertwined interplay between different actors’ preferred musical styles in their multileveled cultural world. This study examines the challenges that mainland China faces concerning the promotion of popular music in school music education, by moving beyond oppositions between culture and power, tradition and modernity, the global and the national, and the pedagogical issues resulting from the introduction of popular music in contemporary China’s education.


All doctoral students in FCL welcome:

1.     The Literature Review

 With Professor Paul Dowling

Thursday 21 November

17:30 – 19:00

Room 739


2.     The Ethics Review

 With Dr Claudia Lapping 

Wednesday 11 December

12.30 – 13:30

Room 777




A warm welcome to the faculty and the new academic year to all new and continuing doctoral students who are part of the Faculty of Children and Learning.
This is the first edition of the FCL doctoral students’ newsletter, which will be sent out by email and also published on the FCL doctoral studies blog, along with news about seminars, conferences and other events. We hope you find it an interesting and useful resource.
You can access the blog at the following link:
Please do save this link on your computer so you can keep in touch with news about doctoral events and issues. We also welcome any suggestions for things you would like to see covered in the newsletter or on the blog. We would also like to invite short contributions that you would like us to consider publishing on the blog.

Doctoral Supervision

Your relationship with your supervisor (s) is one of the most important you will forge during the period of studying for your doctorate.
If you haven’t already, do contact your supervisor to set up the first meeting of the term. Students, and supervisors, often find it useful if at the beginning of the academic year you agree a schedule of supervisory meetings and a set of targets and aims for the year ahead. This can provide a useful focus and – as the meetings are more likely to take place if they are scheduled in advance (even if some have to be changed later), and the aims and targets can provide a useful reference point for discussing and assessing your progress through the year.
If you have any concerns with regards to any aspect of your supervision, please do contact the PGR tutor for your department who will be able to talk through your concerns and offer advice. You can also contact Claudia Lapping, the faculty Director for PGR to discuss any concerns ( )

Supervision Notes

Writing notes of the meeting can be a very useful and productive exercise, helping to clarify the points discussed, any difficulties you are experiencing and further reading and research to be done. This written record can also be very helpful when it comes to completing your Annual Progress Review, which takes place at the end of the academic year. We ask all doctoral students to keep a record of their supervisory sessions. Supervision notes should be emailed to your supervisor, in order to make sure you and your supervisor have understood the same points from the meeting. Please copy the faculty research administrator (Hazel Croft for students in CCM and CPA or Pui Sin for students in CFH or EYPE ) into the email, as they will save a copy of the supervision records (confidentially) in case they are needed for reference at a later date.

Resources for Doctoral Students

Need some inspiration or advice on how to get started, sustain and continue, or to finish your doctoral research?
There are a range of resources for doctoral students, including many ‘How to do a Doctorate’ books; books on writing techniques, and websites containing useful resources for doctoral students. We highlight just a few of the many resources available.

Useful Books

Rowena Murray, How to Write a Thesis – contains useful tips and writing exercises, including overcoming ‘writer’s block’
Joan Bolker, Writing Your Dissertation in Fifteen Minutes A Day – has practical advice and useful tips for those who are combining their doctorate with a job, childcare and other commitments
G Rugg and M Petre, The Unwritten Rules of PhD Research – recommended by previous IOE PhD students as an invaluable, and very down-to-earth, guide to doing a PhD
Patrick Dunleavey, Authoring a PhD – Also highly recommended by past IOE students as providing a great way to pick your way through the whole PhD process


Vitae: postgraduate researchers section
The Vitae website offers a range of resources for doctoral students and postgraduate researchers. You can access the site at the following link:
Vitae for PGR researchers
Recommended items on the site include:
PGR Tips: Bitesize tips on starting, sustaining and completing your doctoral research. Topics have included: ‘Writing your Thesis’; ‘Being aware of your values’; ‘action planning’; ‘finishing your doctorate’ and many more. You can also sign up for the PGR tips email bulletin
Supervision and Key Issues: A range of articles and resources, including videos, about building and managing the relationship with your supervision. Highly recommended
Completing your doctorate: Specific tips on finishing your doctorate including on the final writing up, the submission and the viva
What’s up doc? Blog for postgraduate researchers: interesting blog, inviting comments and articles from all doctoral researchers

The Thesis Whisperer
This is a great resource for doctoral students, which collates together a host of useful links, and which has sections on writing, academic culture, your relationship with your supervisor, productivity tools, book reviews and news from the academic world. You can access this site at the following link: The Thesis Whisperer

Ethos – electronic thesis online service
This digital service, run by the British Library, enables students and academics to access thousands of doctoral theses, which have now been digitised. This is an invaluable service which provides free access to the full text of over 300,000 theses provided by over 120 institutions.
Please go to the following link for more information: Ethos

Follow us on Twitter!
We also have a Twitter account, where we will post news about events in IOE and elsewhere, conferences and any useful articles we come across. Twitter is now one of the most useful ways in which you can find out what is going on in the world of academia, research and beyond – make sure you keep in touch and do follow us:

Suggestions and Contributions
Please send in any ideas for articles, events and issues you’d like covered, suggestions about useful resources and short pieces for publication to:
Hazel Croft, FCL PGR administrator:

We launch our PGR events programme for 2013-14 with an event to welcome , and welcome back, all new and continuing doctoral students and supervisors to the Faculty of Children & Learning
A panel of speakers, including current doctoral students, will be addressing the theme ‘The Impact of Doctoral Research’. There will also be plenty of time for socialising, and light refreshments and wine will be provided.

Thursday 24 October
5.30 – 7pm
Clarke Hall
20 Bedford Way

Please let Hazel Croft know if you plan to attend: