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The Takadimi system reconsidered: Its psychological foundations and some proposals for improvement

Psychology of Music

Published online on


The Takadimi system of rhythm pedagogy codified by Hoffman, Pelto, and White is supposedly an effective means to teach both dictation and reading. This article evaluates the potential of Takadimi as a method for rhythm dictation and rhythm reading, considering its strengths and weaknesses in light of psychology, music theory, and music theory pedagogy. Takadimi’s main forte is that it is based on the psychologically and neurobiologically valid notion of the beat; most of Takadimi’s shortcomings arise from its apathy towards implicit beats. After exploring the psychological reality of the implicit beat, this study considers how an awareness of the implicit beat can make the Takadimi system a more consistent and accurate rhythm solmization method than it currently is.