Visiting the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland

The project team has visited the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, that in a recent review  has been ranked sixth in the world of performing arts education, to learn from their efforts in curriculum development. Royal Conservatoire of Scotland is undergoing a curriculum review following the curriculum reform a few years back putting integrative and collaborative approaches at the forefront.

After having met with the heads of departments and heads of programmes a picture of a great place to study emerged: a truly student-centered learning environment that allows the students to explore and find their own path, while maintaining the ethos of musical excellence and professionalism. The efforts in general could be generally characterised as holistic.

Many interesting topics were touched upon during our visit and both similarities and differences between our own institution and the RCS have emerged. The structure of the study plan and alignment of assessment in regard to the learning outcomes is one the area that our project had a particular interest in. The RCS seems to be pioneering many innovations in that field and we look forward to following up on the real life implementation of the curriculum when it’s launched at the beginning of the next academic year.

An area that the RCS is successful in is the collaboration with professional arts institutions. Openness, sharing and exchange seem to underpin the spirit that is mutually beneficial for all involved. But it doesn’t stop there as the student activities in collaborative arenas are neatly weaved into the fabric of the pedagogical framework: assessment and feedback (mutually constructed!) follow and support the students in a meaningful (to the students) and constructive way that brings them closer to becoming professional practitioners in their respective fields.

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