The Phenomenon of Orchestral Practice: Implications for Student Motivation and Learning - Student’s Point of View




Orchestra;, motivation, instrumental learning, skills


In the studies on musical learning, group musical practice has not been the object of in-depth study. Little is currently known about the impact of playing in an orchestra on students' motivation or learning to study the instrument. In this study, the objective was to understand the phenomenon of musical practice in orchestra to answer the research questions: Does playing in an orchestra generate intrinsic motivation in students? Does it have implications for individual learning and study of the instrument? Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 15 orchestral students to learn the attitude, feelings and perceptions of the students involved. The content analysis involved: (1) a systematic approach to the data analysis process; (2) the use of data reduction methods; and 3) coding the data into categories. This categorization resulted in what is called “pattern analysis.” The qualitative data analysis indicates that students feel motivated for orchestral practice and that playing in the orchestra can positively affect the student's learning and motivation. The orchestra practice seems to increase the practice time and help develop musical and social skills. Self-determination theory is the one that explains the obtained results. According to this theoretical perspective, to feel motivated for a given task, the individual must fulfil three basic psychological needs: autonomy, competence, and establishment of social bonds. For the students, playing in orchestra seems to be a favorable context for developing autonomy, perception of competence, and establishing social bonds with their peers. Playing in orchestra seems to be the challenge in which the balance between the perception of the difficulty of the task and the perception of being competent to perform it successfully is present. That is an excellent level of challenge.


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How to Cite

Fonseca, A. (2023). The Phenomenon of Orchestral Practice: Implications for Student Motivation and Learning - Student’s Point of View. New Trends in Qualitative Research, 16, e788.