Student engagement in the secondary music classroom – possibilities and challenges

A presentation by Dimitra Kokotsaki, Goldsmiths, Durham University.


There is a problem with lack of engagement in formal music education and a number of educators have argued that we need to do more to understand the reasons why many students are disengaged with music at school and put music to its proper place of being an integral part of students’ lives both in and outside of school. In this presentation, I will draw on data from music teachers and students in secondary education that explore views on musical engagement and the importance that is attributed to the subject of music at school. The findings point out the significance of the key attributes of autonomy, relatedness and competence, which, together with creativity, may be the answer to increased engagement in the music classroom.

About Dimitra Kokotsaki

Dimitra is an associate professor at the School of Education at Durham University.

She has expertise in higher education, arts and music education, creativity, student well-being, engagement and resilience. She has conducted a number of research projects which have led to numerous publications in international journals.

Her research interests include the identification and improvement of the instructional, behavioural and socio-psychological conditions in educational settings with a specific focus on creativity, engagement and attitudes to learning.

Dimitra is also interested in the connection between the arts and well-being, from a psychosocial and embodied cognition perspective.

Join the event

Online only – please join via Zoom at the scheduled time.

This event is part of the 2023-24 School of Music Research Colloquia.