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Access Type

WSU Access

Date of Award

January 2020

Degree Type


Degree Name




First Advisor

Joshua S. Duchan


Inspired by Howard Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences, this work investigates how musical intelligence interacts with the other types of intelligence while aiming to find a better pedagogical approach. Multidisciplinary research and interviews with both music students and professionals confirm that musical intelligence is perceived as an interactive portion of general human intelligence and an asset for a positive musical pedagogical approach. This study shows the connections between how the brain transforms sound perception into meaning and emotion and their impact on music pedagogy. The interviews show how music students and professionals perceive the development of their musical intelligence over time and its contribution to an improved sense of overall wellbeing. Although further research is encouraged to measure such results, this thesis offers a panoramic view of the potential of positive pedagogy for musicians to thrive and flourish.

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