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Thesis 1

Thesis Title: Musical performance as a mnemonic strategy for promoting literacy skills in the context of learning support
Degree Type: MEd
Degree Specialism: Other
Thesis Status: Accepted
Date Submitted / Accepted: 2004
Institution Submitting / Submitted To: Mary Immaculate College, UL
No. of Volumes (no. of pages): 1 (110pp.)
Thesis Location / Link: Mary Immaculate College Library
Abstract: This study examined the efficacy of musical performance in enhancing the literacy skills of thirteen learning support pupils in a Limerick boy's primary school. The literacy skills included language, listening, auditory perception and phonological awareness. The capacity of musical performance to function as a mnemonic aid was investigated through examining pupil's recall of words, spellings and meta-linguistic skills. A review of the literature exploring the links between music education and literacy education suggested that musical performance was an effective pedagogical model and that it incorporated the features of an efficient mnemonic device.
The intervention programme was carried out over a period of ten weeks, comprising two fifty minutes sessions per weeks. The paradigm of action research was empoyed in this study. Quantitative methods including standardised and diagnostic tests were utilized to establish pupil's ability levels before and after the intervention programme.
The analysis of data recorded significant improvements in the auditory perceptual, phonological awareness, word recognition and spelling skills of the thirteen participants. The data suggested that musical performance functioned as an effective mnemonic aid. Patters emerging form the data included improved memory, listening, language, enjoyment and increase self-esteem. A view emerged from this study that musical performance provided an effective and stimulating pedagogical approach capable of enhancing the literacy skills of struggling readers.

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