Music education is most commonly constructed in a paradigm that marginalizes non-dominant cultures, even while our society is transforming into an increasingly more diverse community. As music educators in the 21st century, we are tasked to acknowledge and proactively respond to challenges in progressive ways that will assist students toward realizing broader perspectives of learning through creativity, diversity and activism. This course explores how and why structures in music education continue to endorse and perpetuate inequities in education and society, and offers culturally responsive approaches that will assist music educators in confronting inequities in their respective spaces.

Instructors: Dr. Joyce McCall & Dr. Jason Thompson


Dr. Joyce McCall is a postdoctoral scholar and visiting assistant professor of music education at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. She earned a Ph.D. in music education from Arizona State University and both a master’s degree in music education and bachelor of music degree in clarinet performance from the University of Southern Mississippi. Prior to her appointment at IU, she served as an assistant band director at MacArthur High School in Houston. Dr. McCall has also served as a woodwind and marching band specialist in Alabama, Mississippi and Texas. 
In efforts to create more inclusive structures in music and education, Dr. McCall’s research focuses on how the intersections of race, class, and culture might inform or obstruct learning and teaching in educational settings. Her research also includes finding ways to use digital platforms such as Traktor, Virtual DJ, and Cross DJ to further expand the possibilities of music composition and initiate dialogue regarding socio-cultural issues that might not otherwise be explored. Towards intersecting pedagogical and therapeutic practices to address cognitive, emotional, physical, and social needs, Dr. McCall’s future research will center on how music therapy might assist students grappling with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in K-12 settings due to traumatic experiences encountered outside the classroom. 
She has presented sessions and research at the American Educators Research Association (AERA), the National Association for Music Education (NAfME), the Society for Music Teacher Education (SMTE), the MayDay Group Colloquium, the Mountain Lake Colloquium, and the Arizona Music Educators Association (AMEA). From 1999 to 2014, she proudly served as a clarinetist in the United States Army Bands, and was awarded the Army Achievement Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, and the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal. She is also a member of Sigma Alpha Iota International Music Fraternity for Women.


Dr. Jason Thompson earned his Ph. D. in music education from Northwestern University, and bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. At the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts at Arizona State University, Dr. Thompson teaches courses that explore sociocultural issues in music education, socially engaged practice in the arts, and arts in urban contexts. Additionally, Dr. Thompson serves as an affiliate professor at the School of Social Transformation, and an affiliate faculty member with the Center for the Study of Race and Democracy at ASU. He also serves as chair for the Western Division of the Society of Music Teacher Education and the Repertoire and Standards Chair for Ethnic and Multicultural Perspectives for the Arizona State Chapter of the American Choral Directors Association.
Dr. Thompson's research explores the ways in which culture influences and mediates music instruction and how music teachers develop the competencies needed for working in diverse teaching environments. His research has been published in professional journals including Music Education Research and Music Educators Journal, and has been presented at national and international conferences in the U.S., Canada and the U.K. His most current research, grant-funded by the National Association for Music Education and the Society of Research in Music Education, explores the community capacity and community cultural wealth that 13-18 year olds in the Greater Phoenix area use to "do" music in school music programs, in community music programs, and outside of both school and community contexts.

VanderCook College of Music - (312) 225-6288