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date: 21 August 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Without access to official state-sanctioned, public music education, Iranian youth, specifically rock and alternative musicians, follow a self-organized and anarchistic path of music making. Expertly negotiating between the act of music making and the unpredictable situations they face daily, they have become creative in finding new ways to propagate their music and learn the rules of their profession. Meanings attached to assessment in these circumstances become redefined and overshadow the quality of music being created. Assessment becomes a local activism that countervails the top-down, summative model. This chapter provides some characteristics of assessment in music teaching and learning in urban Iran that follow Nilsson and Folkestad’s (2005) ecocultural perspective, consisting of four elements: (a) Gibson’s (1979) concept of affordances, (b) orality, (c) theories of play, and (d) theories of chance. Consequently, assessment in urban Iranian music education can be categorized as follows: (1) do-it-yourself (DIY) and do-it-with-others (DIWO), (2) interactive and decentralized, (3) local anarchism, and (4) lifestyle. This chapter concludes that the field of music education should take a “slightly outside perspective” (Lundström, 2012, p. 652) and proactive approach toward assessment, rather than the reactionary approach to music teaching and learning in which assessment becomes an end goal rather than an approach embodied within learning.

Keywords: ecocultural perspective, lifestyle, anarchism, decentralized assessment, affordance, Iran, assessment

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