Ross Purves: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4301-7024

Rena Upitis: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-5825-2038


The engagement of students taking private music lessons is affected by a range of factors, one of which is the geographic location of the student’s family. This is a geographical analysis of 6,500 questionnaire responses completed by Canadian music teachers, students, and parents, including 819 responses (12.6%) from participants living in ‘rural’ areas, as defined by Statistics Canada. Participants’ home locations were categorized on a five-point ordinal scale from ‘rural’ to ‘very large urban population center’, data-matched with further geospatial data relating to deprivation and road distances, and assessed for strength and direction of association with questionnaire items. Results revealed that students living in more rural areas performed more regularly than those in more urban areas, with parents and teachers in more rural areas taking greater part in collective music making events. Whilst they derived a smaller proportion of their household income from music, teachers in more rural areas garnered greater respect from parents. Parents also reported increasing pleasure in children’s musical progress as population centers decreased in size. The results offer tentative support to the view that in more rural situations, where there are potentially fewer students and teachers, closer intergenerational bonds are possible, and more aspects of private music lessons might reflect locally-valued traditions and resources.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.



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