Ed-Tech Policy

Technology Column

November 27, 1991 2 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

The International Business Machines Corporation is testing a new, computer-based instructional system that is designed to help middle-school students understand the relationships between music, mathematics, and science.

As part of a pilot project in a New York City intermediate school--supported by a $400,000 I.B.M. grant--students will use Ps/2-based software developed by Jacob T. Schwartz, a computer expert and a professor at New York University, to compose music.

The system combines the specially developed software with a sound synthesizer to allow students without any musical training to compose their own melodies.

The machine will play music the students have composed on their choice of a variety of “instruments” or build complex compositions such as might be played by a band or orchestra.

It also analyzes the finished composition to provide comparisons between the rhythm, harmony, and pattern of the musical structures used with analogous structures in the fields of math and science.

The new software, according to Mr. Schwartz, will help increase students’ “personal involvement in computers and also in the modes of thought used in math and science that are inherent in composing music,” he said.

Mr. Schwartz, an amateur composer, is working closely with Florence Mann, who manages the city’s public school technical assistance centers, and with city teachers, to devise a new curriculum around the technology and to create teacher manuals and workshop guides that demonstrate how to use the new approach.

A California software developer has published a new book to help music teachers incorporate computers into their instructional programming and is distributing the work free of charge to any music educator.

“Computers and the Music Educator: A Curriculum and Resources Guide,” was written for Digidesign Inc., a Menlo Park company, by David Mash, the assistant dean of curriculum of academic technology at Berklee College of Music in Boston.

The 91-page book, which is aimed at computer novices, is designed to show music educators how to incorporate microcomputers into the curriculum, what hardware and software are available, what types of courses benefit from using technology, and how to get started with computer-based teaching.

In addition to suggested lesson plans, the book also includes a section on resources for music educators and a listing of such texts and references as Foundations of Computer Music and The Art of Electronic Music.

Copies of Mr. Mash’s book may be obtained by calling Digidesign Inc. at (415) 688-0629.

A version of this article appeared in the November 27, 1991 edition of Education Week as Technology Column


Classroom Technology Webinar Building Better Blended Learning in K-12 Schools
The pandemic and the increasing use of technology in K-12 education it prompted has added renewed energy to the blended learning movement as most students are now learning in school buildings (and will likely continue

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Ed-Tech Policy Reported Essay Remote Learning Isn’t Just for Emergencies
Schools were less prepared for digital learning than they thought they were.
5 min read
Conceptual Illustration
Pep Montserrat for Education Week
Ed-Tech Policy Opinion Why Are We Turning Our Backs on Remote Learning?
Neither the detractors nor defenders of remote learning are fully in the right, argues one superintendent.
Theresa Rouse
5 min read
Illustration of girl working on computer at home.
Ed-Tech Policy Letter to the Editor Using E-Rate to Address the Homework Gap
The FCC's E-rate program can provide relief to many families, says this letter author from the Internet Society.
1 min read
Ed-Tech Policy Q&A Acting FCC Chair: The 'Homework Gap' Is an 'Especially Cruel' Reality During the Pandemic
Under the new leadership of Jessica Rosenworcel, the FCC is exploring broadening the E-Rate to cover home-connectivity needs.
5 min read
Internet connectivity doesn't reach all the houses
Vanessa Solis/Education Week and iStock/Getty