The aim of this project is to work collaboratively with local schools for children with special educational needs (SEN) to increase access to music technology.

UK SEN schools face multiple barriers when using music and music technology to engage and improve the wellbeing of children with severe learning difficulties (SLD), profound, multiple learning difficulties (PMLD) or who just have issues accessing the normal curriculum. This project will explore and identify these barriers in order to develop a suitable solution to promote and unlock new avenues for music technology for both children and music specialists in the surrounding SEN schools.

Research has shown that music technology is currently being under-used in SEN schools. This can be attributed to a lack of funding for equipment and dedicated music specialists as well as a lack of confidence among teachers using the specialised equipment, which is often cumbersome and difficult to use. This project therefore aims to create a music solution that is easy to use and affordable.

So far, this project has sought the collaboration of multiple local schools for children with SEN through various meetings as well as a two-week work shadowing period with one of the leading SEN Music Technology facilities in the country. Each school has its own unique barriers to contend with, so the main challenge is to provide solutions that can help each of the schools.

The project is being led by Dr Tom Davis, a senior lecturer in music & audio technology, and supported by his research assistant, Dan Pierson, Dr Ann Bevan and Phil Hallet from Coda. 

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