Troubadour: A Gamified e-Learning Platform for Ear Training
Music learning is a complex cognitive process, and the development of a support tool for online ear training in music education can greatly enhance the learning experience. Troubadour offers a collection of games aimed at improving users' listening skills, sense of rhythm, music memory, and relative pitch. The platform is designed to support music students and teachers in formal and informal environments. It has an automatic generation of exercises and includes several gamification elements to increase user engagement. Previous studies have shown that Troubadour can be highly beneficial for formal music education at the conservatory level, yielding positive results demonstrated by improved exam scores [1, 2, 3].
The latest version of the platform incorporates new features such as a rhythmic recognition application for music school students and inversion games for melodic and harmonic exercises where the user can input their answers via singing or humming. The current stage of the project investigates how additional games and vocal input methods impact engagement, user experience, and students’ academic results.
The backend and administration framework was written in PHP programming language; the frontend for both the web and mobile application was created with Flutter – a software development platform.
Evaluation will focus on the new inversion games. Quantitative data will be gathered through questionnaires and platform usage frequency to assess the user experience, as well as A/B testing of exam grades of students in the control and test groups to evaluate the platform’s effectiveness.
Data collection is currently ongoing, and we expect to see improvements in user engagement and experience of the platform. The sample is limited by the number of conservatory students (approximately 25).
The newly added features, such as the singing input method, have the potential to significantly improve students' experience and develop their music production skills. Furthermore, we are working on developing more games for the music school level, with the aim of making the platform usable throughout all years of formal music education.
 M. Pesek, Z. Vucko, P. Savli, A. Kavcic, and M. Marolt, “Troubadour: A gamified e-learning platform for ear training,” IEEE Access, vol. 8, pp. 97090–97102, May 2020. doi:10.1109/access.2020.2994389
 M. Pesek, L. Suhadolnik, P. Šavli, and M. Marolt, “Motivating students for ear-training with a rhythmic dictation application,” Applied Sciences, vol. 10, no. 19, p. 6781, September 2020. doi:10.3390/app10196781
 M. Pesek, F. Klavž, P. Šavli, and M. Marolt, “Online and in-class evaluation of a music theory e-learning platform,” Applied Sciences, vol. 12, no. 14, p. 7296, July 2022. doi:10.3390/app12147296