Publication Date



Open access

Embargo Period


Degree Type

Doctoral Essay

Degree Name

Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA)


Vocal Performance (Music)

Date of Defense


First Committee Member

Esther Jane Hardenbergh

Second Committee Member

Stephen F. Zdzinski

Third Committee Member

Rachel L. Lebon

Fourth Committee Member

Tony Boutté


This study investigates the synergistic relationship between voice science and voice pedagogy to inform the practices of voice teachers, music educators, and voice trainers. Furthermore, it is an effort to augment existing knowledge of the anatomy and physiology of the pediatric voice so voice professionals may design targeted curricula in pediatric pedagogy. The most current materials in voice science and voice pedagogy were reviewed and relevant findings connecting both fields of study delineated. In the field of voice science, research concerning the progression of the vocal mechanism from fetus through adolescence was evaluated to clarify physiological findings potentially relevant to voice teaching. Similarly, the practices of voice pedagogues were reviewed in order to ascertain whether those practices were research-based, observational, or suppositional. The results found in the amassed literature provided context for current thought in both fields. New technological modalities provided the most current and authentic depiction of the pediatric laryngeal structure. These depictions applied pedagogically provide a point of justification for the anatomical scrutiny of the pediatric larynx. Research findings also contextualize the observational assessments of voice pedagogues, which in turn substantiates the practical application voice science has in teaching. Additionally, studies have not only found that pediatric vocal mechanism is resilient, but also that it is suited to the vocal demands of childhood and adolescence. Finally, the physical act of singing is somatic to the normal pediatric vocal mechanism. However, tangential issues in the process of singing, physiological growth and developmental factors, impact ability and capability in the developing singer. The identification of synergistic connections provides both clarification of the anatomical development of the pediatric voice and contextualization of the resultant findings toward pedagogical application.


pediatric; pedagogy; voice; science; child; adolescence