A status study of piano education in public schools in Taiwan, Republic of China

Date of Award




Degree Name

Doctor of Musical Arts (D.M.A.)


Music Performance

First Committee Member

Kenon D. Renfrow - Committee Chair


The purpose of this doctoral essay was to investigate and describe the current status of piano education in public schools in Taiwan. Since the Kuo-Ming Tang Party moved to Taiwan in 1949, the government of Taiwan has been democratic. The island has had tremendous improvement and progress during these fifty years. It also has won a reputation as "The Economic Miracle." When people's living standards and material well-being reach a certain level, people begin to pursue and seek an increasingly higher level of culture. Therefore, the expectation of the level of spirituality, especially in music appreciation and education, has become more demanding and urgent for the Taiwanese during these years.With the progress of the economy and the growth of democracy, music education in Taiwan has also been improving and progressing extremely well. However, there are still many areas that need to be improved and reformed in Taiwan. The main problem is that the government's encouragement of piano education cannot keep pace with the rapidly increasing interest of piano students and music lovers in Taiwan. After conducting research and interviewing program directors, the writer found that all performing-arts majors must take piano as their secondary instrument in Taiwan. The role of piano education, therefore, has become a basic requirement for all music majors in Taiwan.In order to determine the current situation of piano education in Taiwan, the author investigated and analyzed the most current published government, educational, and statistical data, and conducted a survey of 128 piano teachers. The major findings were as follows: (1) The absence of a doctoral degree in music and insufficient student enrollment at the college level create an incomplete music-education system. (2) The shortage of full-time music teachers at all levels causes an inefficiency in students' musical progress. (3) The remote cities and counties need to establish more music magnet schools and performing arts centers. (4) The current piano-education system emphasizes piano technique rather than musicianship. (5) The repetition of music courses from one level to the next contributes to inefficient music education in Taiwan. (6) Too much involvement of parents in the music programs forces the limitation of piano teachers' teaching.Finally, recommendations for resolving some of the current problems include the following, (1) Establish a Doctor of Musical Arts Degree and piano pedagogy courses, (2) establish a systematic music program, (3) unify and raise music teachers' graduated level, (4) improve the content and length of the piano juries each semester at all levels, (5) offer multiple music majors and degrees, and (6) set up a career centers and alumni-tracking centers at all levels.


Music; Education, Music

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