A PRISMA review of research on feedback in music education and music psychology

Jennifer Blackwell*, Nicholas Matherne, Gary E. McPherson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


The purpose of this study was to conduct a systematic review of research literature about feedback in music. We employed the Preferred Reporting Systems for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) method to systematically review literature about feedback in music education and music psychology from the first identified article in 1973 to November 2021. We identified a total of 4,499 records using our inclusion criteria, of which a total of 153 were identified as relevant for further analysis. We documented percentages and frequencies for publications over time, type of publications, sampling location, methodology, and topic. We also employed recent conceptions of feedback to categorize the type of feedback studied. Results suggest the extant literature in music may be outdated and lack methodological rigor. Most studies did not provide a working definition of feedback and were largely confined to teacher feedback. Music researchers have primarily studied feedback in relation to learner’s behavior rather than their cognition or affect. Consequently, feed-back (as opposed to feed-up or feed-forward) represents the overwhelming focus of this literature. This review highlights the need for more in-depth, nuanced, and empirically robust studies on feedback in music education and music psychology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)716-729
Number of pages14
JournalPsychology of Music
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2023


  • content analysis
  • feedback
  • music
  • praise
  • systematic review

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology (miscellaneous)
  • Music


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