Led by master voice pedagogy teachers Lynn Helding, John Nix and Amelia Rollings Bigler, the NATS Science-Informed Voice Pedagogy Institute will train enrollees in the application of current voice science to their teaching, whether in the studio or the classroom.
The institute will take place June 25 through July 1, 2023, at Utah State University in Logan, Utah.
Helding calls it a logical culmination of the association’s collective efforts over several years. Earlier this year, NATS launched its Science-Informed Voice Pedagogy Resources page, which outlines a history of the initiative as well as a wealth of materials on the topic. The resources were unveiled during a workshop before the NATS national conference in Chicago.
“It suddenly seemed obvious that NATS, as the largest organization of teachers of singing in the world, ought to launch and sustain an annual Pedagogy Institute for teaching the singing voice, especially one focused on translating the wealth of voice science research for use in classroom and the studio,” Helding said. “Science-informed means just that — informed by science. Yet, we aim to be ‘translational’ not dogmatic, with the ultimate goal of artistic singing, in many styles, as our inspiration.”
This summer’s intensive six-day course will be structured around the traditional pillars of voice science, as well as the newest addition to science-informed pedagogy, cognitive science.
- The Motor: Skeletal Alignment and Respiration
- The Source: Phonation
- The Resonator: Acoustics
- The Snake Pit: Registration
- The Message-Maker: Articulation
- The Brain: The application of cognitive science and motor learning research to voice pedagogy.
Training sessions will consist of traditional lectures, seminars, master classes, open forums, and demonstration teaching by attendees, and will be inspired by clear goals and outcomes.
By the end of the institute, enrollees should:
- Possess both an historic and practical understanding of the three pillars of voice science: physiology, vocal tract acoustics, and cognition.
- Be able to define science-informed voice pedagogy and articulate its importance and value in 21st century voice training.
- Know the existent science-informed voice pedagogy resources and how to access them.
- Be both prepared and equipped to refresh their own course content and align course objectives with the new NATS science-informed pedagogy resources. Attendees will leave equipped with resources to advocate for curricular change at their institutions.
- Commit to a future in which every voice student is assured that they will be educated in a common foundation of science-informed voice pedagogy knowledge upon which to build.
While the NATS Science-Informed Pedagogy Institute is designed for those teaching voice pedagogy at the collegiate level, it is open to all voice professionals keen to heighten their knowledge base to be truly “science-informed,” whether in the classroom or the studio.
“I am excited to be a leader for the first-ever NATS Science-Informed Voice Pedagogy Institute,” Nix said. “This week of lectures, demonstration teaching, mentoring activities, and idea sharing aims to unify and elevate the standard of pedagogy instruction across the U.S. and beyond.”
The cost to attend the institute is $895. Participants can add on the optional housing and meal package for $498, which includes two meals per day and suite-style housing with a private bedroom.
Registration will be limited, and all participants will receive a certificate of completion.
“This is a going to be a terrific experience for anyone who teaches voice pedagogy at the collegiate level and others interested in this topic,” NATS Executive Director Allen Henderson added. “We hope you’ll join us in Utah this summer where we'll continue to unify the teaching of voice pedagogy and create lasting connections with other professionals in this field.”