USF University of South Florida College of The Arts School of Music
  Center for Music Education Research

Suncoast Music Education Research Symposium XV

Suncoast Music Education Research Symposium XV

Fostering Sustainability in Music Education, Therapy, and Cognition


Center for Music Education Research, University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida




Date(s) of Meeting:

February 5-8, 2025


Keynote Speakers

Franziska Dege (Head of Musical Development, Max Plank Institute for Empirical Aesthetics, Frankfurt, Germany)

Florence Nweke (Lecturer in Music Education, University of Lagos, Nigeria)

Michael Thaut (Professor of Music Therapy & Director of the Music and Health Science Research Center, University of Toronto)


Description of Meeting:


This symposium seeks research and practical work that focuses on sustainable musical engagement. Sustainability in music programs means fulfilling the needs of an increasing population with respect to social, psychological, cultural, and economic diversity. Sustainable learning includes efficient use of program resources including diverse social contexts and fosters its benefits through socially meaningful interactions. Realizing a sustainable vision for music education and music therapy requires drawing from all that we know about what it means to be well-adjusted humans, and how we learn, heal, develop, and change through musical experiences. This symposium aims to foster sustainable music programs through uniting music educators, music therapists, musicians, psychologists, neuroscientists, and arts advocates.

            It is essential to communicate the benefits derived from music programs consider economic and programmatic challenges and determine ways to create scalable music offerings that extend music making opportunities for all. Challenges to sustainability of music education programs include reduced program offerings and lack of inclusivity. Music interventions that offer musical learning alongside therapeutic outcomes may reach a larger population and provide scalable alternatives for many individuals. Presentation topics may include but are not limited to sustainable initiatives in inclusivity, sensory processing, mental health, neural function and musical engagement, interdisciplinary learning, environmental responsibility, cultural diversity, and community engagement.


Presenters at Suncoast have two opportunities for publication in either an article submission to Frontiers in Human Neuroscience or as a chapter in an edited volume.


Research Topic Call: Frontiers in Human Neuroscience

This special issue bridges the fields of music cognition, music education, and music therapy through a focus on understanding how music contributes to sustainable initiatives in inclusivity, sensory processing, cognitive development, mental health, cultural diversity, and neural mechanisms underlying these areas.


Edited Volume

To ensure a broad impact, we plan to generate an edited book comprised of selected manuscripts, and reports from panel discussions. If you wish to contribute to the edited volume, please indicate your intent to submit a manuscript for consideration as a book chapter for the edited volume. Chapters will be peer-reviewed by two external reviewers.  


Types of Submissions Sought:

On-site Research Paper Presentations, Virtual Research Paper Presentations,

On-site Research Posters, and Virtual Research Posters


Description of Types of Submissions Sought:

A. Posters (on-site or virtual): Time-slot(s) dedicated for sharing

B. Oral Research Presentations (on-site or virtual): 15-minute presentations, arranged around similar topics, followed by a 20-minute discussion period per topic


Presentation Requirements: All presenters must register to attend the symposium by the pre-registration deadline so their names will be included in the program.


Research Topics Sought:

Topics could include, but are not limited to, the following:


Artificial intelligence

Auditory Neuroscience


Community engagement


Culturally responsive teaching

Culturally diverse music


Equality and equity

Environmental responsibility (hearing loss, recycling)


Learner-centered pedagogy

Lifelong learning

Mental health

Music interventions

Music therapy

Motor control






Social justice

Scalable music programs

Teacher education


Therapeutic music programs

Vernacular musicianship


Submission Information:

Abstract Submission

Up to 250 words for oral presentations and posters


Choose a preferred and a secondary choice:

On-site oral presentation only

Virtual oral presentation only

On-site research poster only

Virtual research poster only

On-site oral presentation or poster

Virtual oral presentation or poster


The Executive Board of the Center for Music Education Research serves as the blind review panel for all presentation types. Submit abstracts to Jennifer A. Bugos at Attach a pdf, Word, or Pages file that includes the proposal title, abstract, and type(s) of presentation formats for which you are applying. Please indicate whether you intend to submit a manuscript for consideration to Frontiers or as part of the edited volume. In the body of the email provide all proposer name(s), email, current position, institutional affiliation, and proposal title. Please type "Suncoast 2025 Submission" in the Subject field. All communications will be with the lead author for collaborative submissions.


Deadline for Submissions and Timeline for Acceptance of Proposals:

September 13, 2024 submission deadline

Acceptance decisions will be made by October 4, 2024

Meeting URL:



October 14, 2024 - Registration will be open

November 22, 2024- Deadline for Early-Bird Registration


All presenters must register by the early-bird deadline, to ensure a place in the program.


In person (with sunshine and beaches):

Conference Presenter/Early Bird: $250

Full Conference Rate: $320

Conference Presenter/Early Bird (Students): $100

Full Conference Rate (Students): $150 


Virtual (without sunshine and beaches):

Conference Presenter/Early Bird: $200

Full Conference Rate: $250

Conference Presenter/Early Bird (Students): $75

Full Conference Rate (Students): $95 


Inquiries About the Conference Proposal Should Be Directed To  

Dr. Jennifer Bugos (