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Monica Lindgren

Vice head of department

Academy of Music and
Drama
Visiting address
Fågelsången 1
41256 Göteborg
Postal address
Box 210
40530 Göteborg

About Monica Lindgren

Monica Lindgren (PhD) is professor of music education and the head of research and postgraduate education within music and arts education at the Academy of Music and Drama. She has a background as a music teacher in elementary education and municipal school of music and arts as well as teacher education programs at different universities in Sweden. In spring 2006, she received her PhD in Music Education at the Faculty of Fine, Applied and Performing Arts, University of Gothenburg. In her thesis, she examined current discourses concerning to the aesthetic activities in the Swedish elementary education.

Since 2006, prof Lindgren has been active in a number of research projects, focusing on aesthetic practices and music education in schools, cultural schools and higher education. Her research interests include issues of power, discourse, identity, and knowledge formation in artistic pedagogical practices, where perspectives from social and critical theories are used in order to understand conditions and opportunities for people's learning within the arts. Her doctoral supervision encompasses studies of cultural and social reproduction in the Swedish arts schools; knowledge and traditions in higher music education; discourse and policy analysis, and music teacher professionality; students’ positioning in the school music classroom; rhetorical and practical performances of social justice in music education; students’ learning of music theoretical concepts.

She is currently involved in a research project financed by the Swedish Research Council 2018-2020: "Reviewing on whose terms? Assessment, conceptions of quality and legitimation of attainment test to music teacher education". The aim of the study is to investigate entrance auditions to music teacher education with regard to the assessment criteria applied, claims of legitimacy, and approach to knowledge. Data consists of eight days of video-documented entrance auditions in various genres, and focus group conversations, including stimulated-recall interviews, with jury members from different Swedish universities. A multimodal social semiotic approach is adopted to study how individuals use linguistic, material, and bodily sign systems in order to represent and perform their understanding of, attitude to and interpretation of various phenomena in the world, and how these representations constantly transform. On a macro-level the concept of discourse is used to elucidate how assessment, legitimization, and selection in the local practices are related to dominant approaches to musical conventions, shaped by music-education institutions.

Previous research projects:

Market aesthetics and everyday culture in the classroom. An ideological dilemma? Identity, dominance and knowledge formation in the music teaching of secondary school. (Swedish Research Council 2007-2009). In this ethnographic project it is explored how market aesthetics and students' music culture were expressed in the Swedish music classroom. The empirical material consisted of video observations of classroom activities in nine Swedish secondary-school settings during one semester.

Construction of aesthetic learning within teacher education (Swedish Research Council 2008-2011). This study investigated prevailing discourses on music in the field of arts in Swedish teacher education for primary schools and preschools, following the program based on 1999 teacher education reform. Data were collected from focus-group talks with teacher educators and student teachers from ten Swedish universities.

El Sistema – musical learning and identity in an intercultural context (2012-2015). An ethnographical study focusing on issues of music learning and social inclusion within the choir- and orchestra school El Sistema in Sweden, based on observations of concerts and lessons and interviews with teachers.

Prof Lindgren's publications can be found in the following scientific journals: Music Education Research; British Journal of Music Eduation; Action, Criticism & Theory for Music Education; Nordic Research in Music Education; Australian Journal of Teacher Eduaction; Discourse: Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education; International Journal of Community Music; Research Studies in Music Education; European Journal of Philosophy in the Arts; Ethnography and Education; Pedagogisk forskning i Sverige och Svensk tidskrift för musikforskning - Swedish Journal of Music Research.

Prof Lindgren is often invited as a lecturer, opponent or keynote speaker at universities in the Nordic countries. During the period from 2018 to 2021 she is serving as a member of the scientific advisory board to support the enhancement of the scientific quality of the Norwegian research project ‘Music Teacher Education for the Future’ at the Western Norway University of Applied Sciences. She also is an experienced evaluator and expert in various educational investigations and program evaluations at the national level. 2015-2016 she was the special investigator for the Government of Sweden in an inquiry of the Swedish municipal culture schools (SOU 2016:69) and 2012-2014 she worked as an external expert for the Swedish National Agency for Education in evaluating music in compulsory school education (NÄU 13).