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Leonard Tan

NIE-NTU, Assistant Professor of Music

BA (Hons) Music, 2004




Industry Experience

Dr. Leonard Tan earned a MA in Music Theory from the National Institute of Education-Nanyang Technological University (NIE-NTU), and a PhD in Music Education with cognates in orchestral conducting, wind conducting, and music theory from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music under the NIE-NTU Overseas Graduate Scholarship.

He is currently Assistant Professor of Music at NIE-NTU, where he teaches courses in music education, conducting, and supervises student teachers. As a scholar, he has published in prestigious peer-reviewed journals and presented his research at major international conferences.

His research interests include comparative philosophy (ancient Chinese philosophy and American pragmatism) and its application to music education, cross-cultural (East-West) empirical research in music education, and the philosophy of music education.

He has conducted numerous leading ensembles, including the Indiana University Orchestras, Indiana University Summer Concert Band, Singapore Symphony Orchestra, Singapore National Youth Orchestra, The Philharmonic Winds (Singapore) and adjudicated in numerous festivals in Asia and the United States.


  • Internationally-known scholar in music education, with publications in leading journals, such as the Journal of Research in Music Education, Psychology of Music, Philosophy of Music Education Review, Research Studies in Music Education, Music Education Research, Journal of Band Research, Music Educators Journal, UPDATE: Applications of Research in Music Education, Pastoral Care in Education, and Educational Philosophy and Theory. For research updates, see

  • Member of Editorial Committees of Music Educators Journal, International Journal of Music Education, and Assistant Book Review Editor of the Philosophy of Music Education Review.

  • Has been awarded book contracts by Oxford University Press and Indiana University Press, contributed to the Teaching Music Through Performance in Band series, and written encyclopaedia entries for SAGE Publications.

  • Other awards include:

  • Indiana University Dean’s Dissertation Prize and Dissertation Year Fellowship
  • National Institute of Education-Nanyang Technological University Overseas Graduate Scholarship
  • World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensembles Conducting Scholarship
  • National Arts Council Geogerette Chen Arts Scholarship
  • Numerous Gold Awards in local and international festivals, including First Place with Excellent Success, Winner of the “Summa Cum Laude” award of the city of Vienna, 2nd Summa Cum Laude International Youth Music Festival, Vienna, Austria