Music teachers and their implementation of the new Music Curriculum Standards in China

Zhuo YU, Bo Wah LEUNG

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The Ministry of Education of China issued a new document of Music Curriculum Standards in 2011 substituting the old version of 2001. This study aims to investigate how music teachers in China implement and respond to the Curriculum Standards through a questionnaire survey and semi-structured interviews with voluntary teachers. A total of 2206 music teachers from 15 regions/provinces responded to the survey in 2015. Findings reveal that, after a few years of implementation, most teachers found different constraints in implementing the new curriculum. Trained teachers, younger teachers and experienced teachers are more receptive and capable in implementing the curriculum, while rural schools are still in a disadvantaged situation. Most teachers do not understand the concept of music education as aesthetic education. In-service training is found to be insufficient, especially in rural schools. In sum, the current 'knowledge-centered curriculum' might need to be redirected to the directions of society-centered and student-centered in order to make a balance. Copyright © 2019 The Author(s).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)178-197
JournalInternational Journal of Music Education
Issue number2
Early online dateJan 2019
Publication statusPublished - May 2019


music curriculum
music teacher
rural school
aesthetic education
music lessons
Ministry of Education
Music Teacher
Music Curriculum
New music


Yu, Z., & Leung, B.-W. (2019). Music teachers and their implementation of the new Music Curriculum Standards in China. International Journal of Music Education, 37(2), 178-197. doi: 10.1177/0255761418820647


  • China
  • Music education
  • Curriculum standards
  • Music teacher
  • Official curriculum