Thoughts on composing, teaching and performing music, by Fergus Black

the late George Pratt, Emeritus Professor of Music at the University of Huddersfield

The Wider Benefits of Music Education

Sir, The wider benefits of music education are not limited to school age (letter, May 31). Some years ago I was delighted but surprised to discover that the music department of which I was head had the best record for employment within the university.

When my colleagues and I questioned employers of our graduates, several stated that they rated highly the methods used in practising an instrument or voice. Students learn to:

  • identify a problem;
  • isolate it;
  • apply or invent an exercise to overcome it;
  • work at it;
  • replace it in its context;
  • then move on to the next problem

— a sequential process as valuable outside of music as within.

Yours faithfully


(Emeritus Professor of Music at the University of Huddersfield)

from The Times (The Times content is behind a pay wall) 3rd June 2004

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