Dr Liz Mellor


Liz ‘s research interests encompass music education, community music, health and wellbeing developing from her experience as a teacher in schools, a lecturer in F.E. and Higher Education (including the University of Cambridge 1993-2000). For Liz, research and teaching are closely aligned. She was awarded a Research Fellowship of the CETL (Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning): C4C (Collaboration for Creativity: Singing, Health and Well Being Project 2009-2011) and a National Teaching Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy in 2015.

Key themes within her research include music and inclusivity, student voice, psychology and relational participation in learning. Her PhD was in Aesthetic Perception in Music Education (University of Leicester Psychology/ Music). She has presented and published nationally and internationally and examined a range of PhDs. More recently, Liz’s research includes partnerships with the NHS Foundation Trusts in York and with YSJU CONVERGE with students, community musicians, music educators and health professionals. Liz is on the Editorial Board for the International Journal of Research in Music Education (MER), and is a founding member of the Conference of Research in Music Education (RIME) and Conference for Spirituality in Music Education (SAME).

For many years, Liz has directed choirs for many years including St Margaret’s Singers, an all female choir at York St John singing everything from Bach, to Blues to Bjork and lots of things in between!

To further her work in music and health, she attained a Diploma in the Therapeutic and Educational Application of the Arts (Institute of Arts in Education and Therapy) and is currently an advanced training member of the GPTI (Gestalt Psychotherapy Training Institute).


Book Chapters

  • Mellor, L. and Bates, C. (2016) Exploring the perceived benefits of shared musical experience: a research challenge. In Elusive Evidence (Eds.) M.Reason and N.Rowe (in press)
  • Mellor, L. and Tune, D. (2011) Changing Somehow? An Experiment  in Researching Singing as a Group Process. In Continuity and Change: Gestalt Therapy Now, (Eds.) Dan Bloom and Philip Brownell. Newcastle upon Tyne, Cambridge Scholars Publishing. pp. 378-304.
  • (2010) ‘University music students talking about their experiences of learning to lead peer-directed singing groups’ in  J. Finney and C. Harrison (Eds.) Whose Music Education Is it? The role of the student voice. Matlock: National Association of Music Educators
  • (2009) Singing, Health and Wellbeing: An investigation of group singing in educational and health environments, focusing on collaboration for creativity as inter-subjective, relational and emotional learning. In C4C CETL Creative Casebook: York St. John University.
  • (2009) Moving Music On: Listening at the heart of musical development. In H.Coll and A.Lamont  (Eds.) Sound Progress; exploring musical development. Matlock: National Association of Music Educators.
  • (1998) The language of self - assessment: Towards aesthetic understanding in music. In E. Bearne
    (Ed.) Use of Language across the Secondary Curriculum. London: Routledge, 176-191,
  • (2001) Music and Story, In V. Watson* (Ed.) The Cambridge Guide to Children’s Books, Cambridge: C.U.P

Selected Conferences

  • (2016 ) ‘Music Education and Mental Health – The CONVERGE Research Project’ (with Chris Bates, Leeds College of Music), 32nd World Conference International Society for Music Education, Glasgow.
  • (2015) ‘Reflection on the Creation of the International Centre for Community Music’ ( with Lee Higgins and Chris Bartram), Eighth Conference of Research in Music Education, University of Exeter.
  • (2012) ‘Ways into Composing: The Patchwork Music Composition Project’, 20th European Association of Music in Schools Conference, Artistry and Craftsmanship, The Hague, The Netherlands.
  • (2011) International Symposium  convened by Liz Mellor: Metaphor and Mindfulness in  Music  Education: Approaches to Researching Spirituality in Music Education (Iris Yob, Walden University, USA; , Estelle Jorgensen, Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, USA. Frank Heuser, University of California, Los Angeles, USA ; Liz Mellor, York St John University; June Boyce-Tillman, University of Winchester, UK; Ed Sarath, University of Michigan , USA)
  • (2010) ‘Feel Better when you Sing? Singing, Health and Well Being from the Student Perspective’ (Invited Paper) National Association of Music Educators Annual Conference, Stone, Staffs, UK.
  • (2010) ‘Singing, Health and Wellbeing? Situating spirituality and presence in singing as a group process’. First International Conference on Spirituality and Music Education (SAME), Birmingham, UK.
  • (2010)  ‘How does gestalt theory inform the changing face of researcher identity? An exploration of gestalt theory within the context of research, singing, pedagogy and music. AAGT (Association for the Advancement of Gestalt Therapy) ‘Continuity and Change: Gestalt Therapy Now’. Biennial  Conference, Philadelphia, USA.
  • (2009) ‘Singing and Well-Being: An exploratory study across the fields of music education and Gestalt Psychology’. Sixth International Conference of Research in Music Education, University of Exeter.
  • (2007) ‘Researching Collaboration in Performance: A Mixed Method Approach. Fifth International Conference of Research in Music Education, University of Exeter, UK
  • (2005) ‘Mapping Cultural Identity into the Creative Process: An investigation of  adolescents’ ‘creative’ use of  the CD Rom Dance eJay. (Invited Paper) Musical Creativity in Culture and Mind. Society for Education, Music and Psychology Research (SEMPRE), University of Cambridge, UK.
  • (2002) ‘Computer based composition in the Primary School: An investigation of children’s composition responses using Dance eJay’ . 10th Anniversary Conference of European Society for the Cognitive Sciences of Music (ESCOM). Computer based composition in the Primary School: An investigation of children’s composition responses using Dance eJay. University of Liege, Belgium.
  • (2001) International Symposium  convened by Liz Mellor: Creative Thinking in Children’ Music Compositions : Peter Webster (Northwestern University, USA), Maud Hickey (Northwestern University, USA), Liz Mellor (Ripon and York, University of Leeds) Fred Seddon, (Keele University, UK), Pamela Burnard  (Homerton College, Cambridge University), Betty Ann Younker (Michigan State University), Claudia Gluschkof  (Levinsky College of Education, Israel):  Second International Conference of Research in Music Education,  University of Exeter, UK.
  • (2000) ‘Making Connections: Investigating Teachers’ and Children’s Perceptions of Music Composition. New Directions in Music Education: Teaching Composition and Improvisation Conference. School of Music, Michigan State University, USA.
  • (1999) ‘The Use of Personal Construct Psychology to Investigate Teachers’ Responses to Children’s Music  Compositions’ .International Conference of Music Education Research. First International Conference of Research in Music Education, University of Exeter, UK.
  • (1997) ‘Investigating Teachers’ and Pupils’ Perceptions of Music  Composition’. European Educational Research Association (ECER), Frankfurt, Germany.

Projects & Consultancy

  • (2015) CONVERGE Music Research Project (commissioned by CONVERGE)
  • (2014) York Schools Music Research Project: Mapping Music in the City of York
  • (2012) The Music Patchwork Composition Project – in honour of the late John Paynter
  • (2009) Consultation, Devising and Implementation: Music Education Project, University of York
  • (2002) PhD Consultancy– ICT and Music Education, University of Bristol.
  • (2000-2) Project Veronika: Social Inclusion and Music Education  with  the Open University, UK. European Union Funded Project: Partners in France, Austria, Hungary, Switzerland, UK, Germany
  • (1999) National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER) Arts in the Primary School, Steering Group, University of York.
  • (1999) BERA: Mapping Music Education Research in the UK – Member of  the Steering Group, University of Surrey, Roehampton Institute, London, UK.
  • (1999)   Music and Identity: Seminar (sponsored by the British Psychological Society), Open University, Milton Keynes, UK: invited seminar.
  • (1995) Music Education Consultant for the DELTA (Development of Teaching and Learning in the Arts: Project II - ESRC), University of Leicester.