2006 Research Poster Session Abstracts

2006 MENC National Conference Research Poster Session Abstracts


Research Poster Session I Research Poster Session II Research Poster Session III
Part 1   •   Part 2 Part 1   •   Part 2 Part 1   •   Part 2

8:30 AM

Research Poster Session I

Abril, Carlos R. c-abril@northwestern.edu
Northwestern University
Gault, Brent M.
Indiana University

The State of Music in the Elementary School: The Principal’s Perspective

This study sought to examine elementary school principals’ perceptions of the elementary school music curriculum. A survey, mailed to 350 principals (yielding a 61% response rate), was designed to answer the following questions: What are principals’ perceptions of music learning outcomes and broad educational goals that result from school music instruction at their respective schools (current), and as it should exist in ideal conditions? Is there a difference between principals’ ratings for current and ideal conditions? What affect do various factors have on music education at their schools? Results revealed that principals are generally satisfied with their music programs’ ability to meet music education standards and broad educational goals. However, significant differences between the current and ideal conditions imply they perceive improvement to be possible. Principals reported factors negatively affecting their music program to be: the No Child Left Behind Act, budgets, standardized tests, and scheduling.

Allen, Michael L. mallen@mailer.fsu.edu
Geringer, John M.
MacLeod, Rebecca B.
Florida State University

Performance Practice of Violin Vibrato: An Artist-Level Case Study

We investigated performance practice of vibrato with an artist-level violinist whose credits include positions as concertmaster of the New York Philharmonic, Cincinnati Symphony, and the Dallas Symphony Orchestra. The main questions of this case study were to determine mean width, rate, and directional intent of an artist-level violinist. Additionally the present study sought to determine if an artist-level violinist consistently initiated vibrato in an upward or downward direction and whether vibrato was used continuously when performing slurs. We measured pitch levels of vibrated and non-vibrated tones, direction and magnitude of change when initiating vibrato, and duration of non-vibrato when performing slurs. Analyses indicated that the mean rate of the artist-level violin vibrato was approximately 5.7 Hz in first position and 6.3 Hz in fifth position. The mean width of vibrato was approximately 40 cents in first position and 108 cents in fifth position. Pitch oscillations during vibrato were alternations both above and below the conceived pitch, rather than oscillations only above or only below the conceived pitch. The artist initiated vibrato toward the scroll (in a downward direction) and stopped vibrating during the transition between slurred notes. Mean duration of non-vibrato portions of slurred notes was (.33 seconds). Implications for future research are discussed.

Ayers, Jennifer L. ayersbarnard@yahoo.com
University of North Carolina at Greensboro

Elementary Music Teachers’ Vocal Hygiene Behaviors and Singing Techniques: A Survey of Classroom Vocal Practices of Elementary Music Teachers in North Carolina and Virginia Public Schools

The purpose of this study was to identify and describe the vocal hygiene behaviors of elementary music teachers in order to obtain profiles of singing techniques and conservational vocal practices currently utilized throughout public elementary school systems in two selected states. Survey research techniques were used wherein a questionnaire was constructed and facilitated the investigation of vocal behaviors of kindergarten through fifth grade (K-5) music teachers in the state of North Carolina and the Commonwealth of Virginia. The results were intended to serve as a basis for models, applications, personal awareness of vocal practices, and pedagogical enhancements toward maintaining healthy voices. The population in this study were public school elementary music teachers, kindergarten through fifth grade, in North Carolina (N = 1,046) and Virginia (N = 1,166). Letters of invitation to participate in the study were mailed to the “music teacher” at the respective elementary schools. The letter directed elementary music teachers to a World Wide Web URL with instructions to access the questionnaire, complete the survey process, and electronically return responses as provided by SurveyMonkey.com® LLC (1999-2004). Individuals who completed the questionnaire online or, alternatively, by marking a paper copy, identified and defined subjects in the current study resulting in a final sample of 412. Analysis generally revealed relationships among arduous teaching schedules, frequent occurrences of vocal problems, and inadequate preparation for elementary music teaching. Conclusions primarily focused on vocal abuse relating to overuse, improper vocal hygiene practices, and lack of preparatory instruction in teacher training methods classes.

Baker, Vicki D. vbaker@uta.edu
University of Texas at Arlington

Relationship between Job Satisfaction and the Perception of Administrative Support among Early Career Secondary Choral Music Educators

The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between job satisfaction and administrative support as perceived by secondary choral music educators in selected schools in the state of Texas. Further, the study ascertained whether or not perceived administrative support contributes to teacher attrition and retention. Subjects included early career teachers (n = 87) and their principals (n = 53). Identical questionnaires were distributed to teachers and principals to ascertain their level of agreement regarding the priorities in music education and the value of methods of professional assistance. In addition, teachers answered questions regarding job satisfaction, intention to stay or leave the teaching profession or their current teaching position. Correlation between teachers’ and their administrators’ ratings of priorities in music education and ratings of the value of various methods of assistance was uniformly low. The low level of teacher/principal agreement was consistent among teachers intending to leave the teaching profession, as well as those planning to change schools. Results indicated that factors leading to greater job satisfaction include administrative support, community and parent support, and higher salary. Early career teachers intending to leave the profession included inadequate administrative support, lack of student motivation, job stress, and lack of student discipline among their primary reasons. Teachers intending to change schools indicated job stress, lack of student motivation, and lack of student discipline were primary factors. The study suggested that administrators do have an impact on job satisfaction, as well as the attrition and retention of early career teachers.

Barry, Nancy H. barrynh@ou.edu
University of Oklahoma
Garrett, Linda K.
University of Central Oklahoma
Clinton, John
Oklahoma Center for Arts Education

The Arts Education Perception Survey (TAEPS)

This study examined perceptions of arts education in elementary schools and communities across the state of Oklahoma. The Arts Education Perception Survey (TAEPS) was developed and pilot-tested prior to administration to the target sample. Respondents included 9,753 legislators, business people, parents, teachers, school administrators, and school board members associated with 120 randomly-selected rural and urban schools. Strong general response trends as well as significant differences between respondents associated with rural and with urban schools and significant differences between different participant roles within the schools (state legislators, business leaders, school administrators, teachers, school board members, and parents) were observed. Results indicate that these educators and community members held fairly traditional views of what constitutes arts education, expressing highest levels of agreement with formal performance-based or arts-production activities. In contrast with high levels of agreement about the positive benefits of arts in education, it is striking to note respondents’ general disagreement that schools have adequate funding and supplies. General disagreement expressed for the item “Legislators value arts education” may hold important implications for arts education policy and the publics’ perceptions of legislative support for the arts.

Bauer, William I. william.bauer@case.edu
Case Western Reserve University
Moehle, Matthew
University of Nebraska

Professional Development Online: A Content Analysis of the MENC Discussion Forums

The professional development of music educators has been a topic of research and discussion for a number of years. While professional development can take many different forms, advances in technology are enabling new approaches. MENC: The National Association for Music Education, currently provides online professional development in the form of discussion forums for band, chorus, collegiate, general music, orchestra, research and technology. In the fall of 2002, the association began providing mentors to monitor the forums, responding to questions posted. The mentors are selected by MENC for their expertise in a specific area of music education, with new mentors appointed each month. Since 2003, only the band, orchestra, general music and chorus forums have had mentors. The purpose of this study was to analyze the contents of the online MENC discussion forums for the academic year 2004-2005. This inquiry provided insights into the types of professional development for which this type of forum may be best suited, as well as brought to light topics that are of concern to in- service teachers that suggest (a) areas for research and (b) professional development experiences that may be needed and desired by music teachers.

Bergee, Martin J. bergeem@missouri.edu
Westfall, Claude R.
University of Missouri–Columbia

Stability of a Model Explaining Variability in Solo and Small-Ensemble Festival Adjudication

This was the third in a series of investigations developing a theoretical model of selected extramusical variables’ influence on solo and small ensemble festival ratings. Authors of the second of these had used binomial logistic regression to formulate a model. Their finalized model included time of day (morning or afternoon), type of event (solo or ensemble), performing medium (vocal or instrumental), school size classification (largest classification versus the other four), district level of expenditure per average day attendance (categorized into thirds), and the type of event by performing medium interaction as significant contributors to the model. An additional variable, geographical district, was eliminated. For the present investigation, we examined the stability of their preliminary model via a similar model-building process for the subsequent year’s ratings outcomes. Among other modifications, we used multinomial rather than binomial logistic regression. Ultimately, the present study’s model converged strongly on the preliminary one. Time of day, type of event, school size, district expenditure per ADA, geographical district, and the time of day by school size interaction contributed most to the multinomial model. The model-development process thus far suggests that performing later in the day, performing as a soloist, and entering from a large, metropolitan-area, relatively high-expenditure school serves as a success profile. The multinomial approach did not seem to contribute new information to the model. As with the earlier study, the main distinctions were between entrants who received the I rating and those who received a lower rating.

Brakel, Timothy D. timothy.brakel@utoledo.edu
University of Toledo

Band Directors’ Beliefs about Marching Bands

The role of the marching band within the music curriculum is often the subject of debate. This study surveyed 117 Indiana high school band directors concerning their attitudes and beliefs about marching band. The results indicated that while marching band directors rated musical values of music appreciation, music listening skills, musical expression, musical style as receiving greater importance than extra-musical values (e.g. discipline, responsibility, leadership). These values were reversed when the directors were asked to rank their top five reasons for marching band.

Campbell, Patricia Shehan
Gibson, Rachel gibson@u.washington.edu
University of Washington

Parental Roles in the Musical Enculturation, Socialization, and Education of Children

Parental involvement can have a strong impact on children¹s formal and informal acquisition of musical skills, understanding, and values. Pinewood School, the public elementary school of interest in this mixed-methods study, offers formal music instruction through the generous support of parent donations. A survey and interviews were conducted to investigate the musical involvement of parents with children at home and out of school, and to probe their perceptions of music in the school curriculum. Results were used to profile a community of parents that is dedicated to providing for the musical growth and enrichment of their children, and who care that trained musicians and educators are interacting with their children on a regular and consistent basis. Evidence pointed to children’s better chance at a positive life-long association with music when their parents were supportive of and involved in their education in and through music.

Cardany, Audrey Berger Audrey.Cardany@uri.edu
University of Rhode Island

Examining Parents’ Beliefs Concerning Music and Preschool Children

The purpose of this study was to examine the beliefs of parents of preschool children, specifically their understanding of the benefits of music experiences for their children and their rationales for providing music experiences to their children. The researcher interviewed 12 parents of 8 girls and 4 boys, ages 2 through 5, who participated in music education programs. Other data sources included observations of children with and without parents in music settings, memos, and documents. Data analysis revealed: (a) categories of benefits of music for preschool children described by parents including social, emotional, and cognitive benefits, and (b) rationales for music education not fully developed. This study illuminates the personal and individual nature of parents’ goals for and beliefs about music and their preschool children. The researcher suggests that music educators strive for reciprocal relationships between parents and educators as encouraged by the National Association for the Education of Young Children.

Cavitt, Mary Ellen Mary.Cavitt@utsa.edu
University of Texas at San Antonio

An Exploration of Differential Feedback to Students Labeled as Disabled or Low Achievers in Instrumental Music Class

Instrumental music teachers’ perceptions of how they respond to students who have been labeled as disabled or low achievers were studied. Subjects (n=38) were selected from among middle school band directors in the south Texas area. Data included teacher questionnaire responses to open-ended questions regarding teacher feedback to students labeled as disabled or low achievers. Findings highlight the challenges faced by teachers when discussing their perceptions of feedback given to students with disabilities. When asked if the teacher feedback given to band students labeled as disabled differed in any way from the feedback given to other students, 39.5% of respondents indicated that there was no difference in feedback, 42.1% indicated that there was a difference, and 18.4% indicated that the answer to the question was dependent on several variables. Respondents (n=16) who stated that there was a difference in feedback given to students labeled as disabled or low achievers, suggested that students also needed multiple opportunities for successful performance trials and increased time on tasks. Teachers (n=15) who stated that they did not give different feedback most frequently stated that they “treated everyone the same”. Respondents (n=7) who stated that their response was dependent on several variables most often stated that the feedback was dependent on the student’s type of disability and the teacher’s past experiences with the student. Clearly, there was no consensus regarding teacher perception of how feedback is given to students labeled as disabled or low achievers.

Coffman, Don D. don-coffman@uiowa.edu
University of Iowa

An Exploration of Personality Traits in Older Adult Amateur Musicians

Participants (N = 58) recruited from a New Horizons Institute “band camp” for older adult amateur musicians completed a musical background questionnaire and the Cattell Sixteen Personality Factor Questionnaire, Fifth Edition (16PF). Group scores for all the 16PF primary and global factor scores were within expected ranges, although Factor B (Reasoning) was noticeably higher and Factors E (Dominance), F (Liveliness) and L (Vigilance) were noticeably lower, as was the global factor IN (Independence). This suggests that this sample “leans” toward being more accommodating (IN-), deferential (E-), serious (F-), trusting (L-), and thinking more abstractly (B+). The 16 primary and five secondary factors were analyzed using a gender by experience (2 x 2) MANOVA, revealing a significant gender by experience interaction, which was the impetus for follow-up univariate analyses. Three primary factors showed significant between-group differences: L (Vigilance), N (Privateness); and Q1 (Open to Change). Male newcomers were more trusting (L-) and disclosing (N-), although the opposite tendencies were found for male returnees (those who had played current instruments in high school or college). Female returnees were more open to change than male returnees. A 2 x 2 chi-square analysis of gender by experience revealed that older adult females were more likely to begin a new instrument than were men.

Colwell, Cynthia M. ccolwell@ku.edu
University of Kansas

Integration of Music and Core Academic Objectives in the K-12 Curriculum: Perceptions of Music and Classroom Teachers

The purpose of the study was to examine self-reported music ability, attitude toward music, importance toward and feelings of capability of addressing the National Standards in Music, and the view of integrating music into the K-12 curriculum of in-service music and classroom teachers. Teachers participated in lectures and music activities designed to demonstrate strategies to integrate music and core academic objectives and worked in school-based teams to create their own integrated lesson plans. As pre- and posttest, participants completed a survey that addressed: music experience, ability and attitude, teaching music objectives, and integrating music and core academic objectives into the K-12 classroom. Results indicated that both classroom and music teachers became more comfortable at the thought of integrating music and core academic objectives into the curriculum. Classroom teachers did not show a consistent trend from pre- to posttest when evaluating the importance or feelings of capability of teaching the national music standards. Both music and classroom teachers showed a slight increase in confidence level in integrating music with reading, math, science, or social studies objectives.

Crow, Derrick A. tuba1973@aol.com
Southern Illinois University Carbondale

The Effect of Instrumental Rehearsal on Blood Glucose Levels

The purpose of this study is to explore the effects of instrumental rehearsal on blood glucose levels. I hypothesize an hour and a half of instrumental rehearsal has an effect on blood glucose levels. I expect to see a drop in glucose levels larger then those of non-rehearsal days. Blood Glucose is affected by physical activity, and any physically demanding endeavor will lower its levels. Instrumental music requires deep breathing and puts strain on muscles such as the orbiculas oris, caninus, buccinator, risorius, that are normally used only lightly for conversation and eating. Subjects were drawn from an performance ensemble at a Midwestern university. The subjects were tested with a blood glucose meter twice a day once a week over the span of five weeks. Glucose levels were also checked on a non-rehearsal day to establish a base line for comparison. The research demonstrated that instrumental rehearsal has an effect on blood glucose levels. While the expected decrease in blood glucose did not occur on every testing incidence. Two fascinating statistical correlations did become known. The first of these is the correlation between perceived stress and increase of blood glucose levels.

Daugherty, James F.
Hedden, Debra Gordon dhedden@ku.edu
University of Kansas

Audition Procedures for Community-Based Children’s Choirs

The purpose of this study was to ascertain the status, characteristics, and content of audition procedures relative to community-based children’s choirs (N = 292) sponsored by programs (N=84) registered with a national arts organization. Participants responded to a survey comprised largely of open-ended queries and checklist items. Content analysis and non-parametric statistical procedures indicated that these children’s choirs to a significant degree (a) conducted auditions individually rather than in groups, (b) reported that they based membership acceptance or rejection primarily on pitch discrimination criteria, and (c) utilized auditions chiefly as summative rather than formative assessments. No significant relationships were found between audition variables and director gender, director education, choir size, or tuition charged for choir participation. Other findings reported include (a) the specific audition procedures used by these choirs to assess singing voice, speaking voice, non-vocal skills and attributes, and group interaction behaviors; (b) means employed to notify choristers of auditions and audition results; and (c) an overall demographic description of respondents. Results were discussed in terms of the status of the profession’s knowledge base with respect to children’s choir audition procedures, the mission of community-based children’s choirs, and recommendations for continuing research.

Douglas, Ken dougla97@msu.edu
University of North Carolina at Greensboro

The Effects of a Music Learning Theory-Based Pattern Instruction Improvisation Curriculum on the Improvisational Ability of Secondary Instrumental Music Students

The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of Music Learning Theory-based improvisation instruction with an emphasis on improvisation and creativity on the improvisational abilities of secondary instrumental music students. A two-dimensional treatment by levels with repeated measures design was used. The subjects of the study were 101 one 6th, 7th, and 8th grade wind and percussion students. Prior to the instructional period, the students took the Music Aptitude Profile (MAP). The students were randomly assigned to a treatment or control instructional group, by homogenous instrument group using MAP results to control for aptitude. The researcher taught each group for 12 weeks. Both groups received rote-song instruction, and the treatment group received additional pattern instruction. After the instructional period, each student played four consequent phrases to a set of four researcher-composed antecedent phrases. Two independent judges and the researcher rated the improvisations for tonal and rhythmic achievement. Reliability coefficients of .68 to .89 were accepted. Those in the treatment group had significantly higher tonal improvisation scores than those in the control group and tended to have slightly higher rhythmic improvisation scores.

Duke, Robert A.
Davis, Carla M. carlamiadavis@mail.utexas.edu
Allen, Sarah E.
Goins, Katherine R.
University of Texas at Austin

Focus of Attention Affects Performance of Motor Skills in Music

We tested the extent to which learners performing a simple keyboard passage are affected by directing their focus attention to different aspects of their movements. We found significant results that are consistent with those observed in the study of other motor skills. 64 experimental sessions were completed by 16 music majors, each of whom performed under each of four experimental conditions in a fully counterbalanced design. While performing the test passage, subjects were directed to focus their attention on either their fingers, the piano keys, the piano hammers, or the sound produced. Complete MIDI data for all responses were digitally recorded by software written specifically for this experiment. Like the results obtained in tests of other physical skills, our results show that performance is most accurate and generalizable when subjects focus on the effects their movements produce rather than on the movements themselves, and that the more distal the focus of attention, the more accurate the motor control. We discuss our results in relation to similar research in motor learning and kinesiology.

Duling, Ed ed.duling@utoledo.edu
University of Toledo

Predictors of Form Perception in Preservice Music Education Majors

This study follows a line of research using kinesthetic analogues (bodily movements) of recorded musical excerpts and short selections, as outlined by Cohen (1997). Thirty-four undergraduate music education majors in a general music methods class created and presented kinesthetic analogues (KAs) of their chosen pieces to their classmates. The analogues were videotaped and then scored for quality of representation of pitch, rhythm and form by three independent raters familiar with KAs. Students gave permission for the researcher to use their ACT scores and their composite music GPAs in music history, theory, and aural skills in the data analysis. The results of the analysis showed significant correlations between form and pitch (r = 0.864, p < .001), form and rhythm (r = 0.819, p < .001), form and ACT (r = 0.404, p < .05), and form and GPA (r = 0.365, p < .05). A regression analysis for ACT with form perception as the dependent variable showed that ACT scores explained 16% of the variance [F (1,33) = 6.445, p = .02]. A regression analysis for GPA with form as the dependent variable showed that GPA explained 13% of the variance [F (1, 33) = 5.066, p = .03]. With ACT and music GPAs as significant predictors, the implications for music teacher educators and music education programs and directions for further research are discussed.

Ferrell, René JRFferrell@aol.com
California State University, Bakersfield

A Case Study: An Application of Sociological Research in Interpersonal Influence to Music Education

This study investigated factors of interpersonal influence through the perceptions of twenty associates of Kodaly pioneer Katinka Daniel, and it looked into behavioral and attitudinal changes attributed to her influence. A case study design and structured interview questionnaire were used to study four variables coming from the social sciences’ literature on influence: legitimate authority, attractiveness, expertise, and trustworthiness. All interviewees were music teachers who used Kodály and have studied or worked with Dániel. The data revealed two images of Dániel. The first, a business-like image, emanated from Dániel’s work in the classroom, and the second, a maternal image, came from personal relationships with her associates. Attractiveness (defined as a willingness to respond positively to the requests of an influential person because one respects that individual and wants to obtain their approval) was the principal characteristic of influence, followed by legitimate authority, then expertise. Trustworthiness played a lesser role. The greatest effect of Dániel’s influence was on the interviewees’ teaching. Other factors described as influential were her expectation students would succeed, her position as role model, praise and encouragement, gestures of generosity and concern. Verbal communication served as principal conveyance of influence, and though her criticism was described as bluntly honest, it was often accepted by the interviewees. This was because most believed she was focused on their best interest, because her motives were not considered self-serving, and because students saw the motives for her criticism as stemming from her high ideals and the desire to see them improve as teachers.

Forsythe, Jere L. forsythe.1@osu.edu
Kinney, Daryl W.
The Ohio State University

Factors Affecting Recall of Rhythms

Forty music education majors, 20 from each of two major universities, were asked to recall rhythm stimuli eight beats in length, presented once, by immediately performing through a mode of their choice (e.g., clapping, tapping). The test consisted of 40 items, half with rhythms paired with tonal melodies (using a general midi piano sound) and half with the same rhythms performed without melody (using a woodblock sound); 20 of the items were rhythms in duple subdivisions and 20 in triple subdivisions of the beat; half the melodies were in minor mode and half in major mode. Items were counterbalanced and randomized for presentation. Comparisons of rhythm recall accuracy were made between melody and no melody conditions, first four beats (measure one) and second four beats (measure two), duple and triple subdivisions, major and minor mode, and instrument family of subjects (vocal or instrumental). Response mode preference was also noted. Results showed no significant main effect between melody and no melody conditions. Significant differences were indicated between accuracy of recall of the first four beats (first measure) and the second four beats (second measure) with the first four beats being recalled more accurately and between duple and triple items, with duple rhythms being recalled more accurately. A significant interaction between melody condition and measure occurred with subjects responding more accurately in the first measure with items having no melody but more accurately in the second measure for items with melody. A significant interaction also occurred between measure and subdivision, with the decline in accuracy between measure one and measure two being more pronounced for duple items than triple items. No other factors were significant (major/minor mode, gender, or instrument family). Subjects preferred a tapping response (fingers/hands on table) followed by clapping and vocalizing (e.g., tah).

Fuelberth, Rhonda J. rfuelberth2@unl.edu
University of Nebraska–Lincoln

The Effect of Left Hand Gestures Used to Generate Ensemble Crescendo on Inappropriate Vocal Tension in Singers

The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of a videotaped model of a conductor on singers&sup1; perceived inappropriate vocal tension levels, given the meaning interpreted from a gesture. Gestures examined were gestures typically used to illicit an increase in dynamic level on the part of the performer. Specifically, the potential of left hand conducting gestures to generate or prevent inappropriate vocal tension was examined. Singers (N=53), of varying levels of expertise, performed a segment of an SATB choral arrangement while responding to a videotaped example of a conductor using a variety of conducting gestures typically used to generate ensemble crescendo including: (a) No Left Hand (Pattern only); (b) Palm Directly Up (Hand relatively free of tension); (c) Palm Angled Inward and Up (45º angle; Hand relatively free of tension); (d) Cupped hand (Fingers together; deliberate tension in palm and fingers); (e) Cupped Hand (Fingers separated, deliberate tension in palm and fingers); (f) Pointing Gesture (Deliberate tension in fist and finger); and (g) Fisted Gesture (Deliberate tension in fist). Results showed that there were significant differences in perceived vocal tension ratings for four of the seven conducting conditions. Mean perceived tension levels for the fisted (M=6.88, SD=2.20), pointing (M=6.24, SD=1.94), and cupped hand with fingers separated (M=5.82, SD=2.13) conducting conditions were significantly greater than the mean perceived tension level of the no left hand condition (M=3.96, SD=1.79). Results also indicated that the mean perceived tension level for the palm angled inward and up (M=2.60, SD=1.62) was significantly lower than the mean perceived tension level for the no left hand condition (M=3.96, SD=1.79).

Galliford, Joy j.galliford@miami.edu
University of Miami

The Effects of Music Experience during Early Childhood on the Development of Linguistic and Non-Linguistic Skills

This project sought to measure whether children exposed to varying durations of music and diverse qualities of musical instruction in the preschool years exhibited differences in the development of linguistic and non-linguistic skills. The tools used to assess their linguistic and non-linguistic development were select subtests of the Woodcock-Johnson Tests of Cognitive Ability-Revised (WJ-R) psychological battery. Two surveys, one for parents and one for preschool teachers, determined the length of time children were exposed to music. The sample included three hundred seven participants (156 females and 151 males) of which there were 72 three-year-old children, 110 four-year-old children, and 125 five-year-old children. Parents or primary caregivers of all 307 children completed the surveys. The teacher survey was completed by 25 preschool teachers where the children attended preschool. In addition, the investigator completed one teacher survey form for each of the twenty-five preschool teachers during the scheduled time for music instruction. Results indicated that there was a significant association between the participant’s quantity of a child’s musical exposure and his/her linguistic and non-linguistic skills as measured by the WJ-R. Additionally, a significant association existed within each socio-economic status level and the participants’ subtest scores on the WJ-R.

Graham, Brenda J. bgraham@oak.edu
Oakland City (Indiana) University

Relationships among Instrument Choice, Instrument Transfer, and Subject Sex

The purpose of this study was to investigate reasons for initial instrument choice as a function of participant sex and instrument transfer/non-transfer. Subjects were collegiate instrumental musicians (N=235) who responded to a two-part survey: Part One presented 30 Likert statements concerning instrument choice. Sixty-eight subjects (28.93%) reported that they had transferred from the initial instrument to another instrument; the remaining 168 subjects (71.06%) were designated as non-transfer subjects. Chi-Square results for sex by transfer and instrument family membership by transfer and sex yielded non-significant results. Results for initial instrument by transfer, current instrument by transfer, and initial instrument and current instrument by sex were significant. Among reasons for instrument choice, the item “I liked the sound of the instrument” was rated highest. Correlations among the 28 items were determined. The factor analysis of reasons for instrument choice produced eight factors: physical properties of the instrument, influence of the teacher, ease/accessibility, influence of father, influence of male relative or friend, influence of female relative, challenge, and influence of mother. A MANOVA procedure across the eight factors indicated significant differences by the main effects of sex and transfer and their interaction.

Greher, Gena R. Gena_Greher@uml.edu
University of Massachusetts Lowell

An Examination of a Distance-Learning Approach for Music Teacher Licensure Preparation

The present focus on high stakes testing has implications not just for K-12 students and their teachers, but for teachers in training and their professors as well. Institutions of higher learning and their professors will be judged by how their students and ultimately their future students will perform on standardized tests. To ensure that new music teachers are highly qualified in their respective subject areas, our state has instituted an exam for music teacher licensure, which consists mainly of multiple choice questions, in subject matter knowledge as well as educational theory and methodology. Due to logistical difficulties encountered in instituting an on campus review class, a distance learning web-site was created to help students review for this exam. This research focuses on the rationale for distance learning over traditional educational formats as well as the technological and student oriented issues encountered. Students’ reactions to using this web-site while mainly positive were consistent with other research regarding student attitudes towards distance learning. Replicating existing modes of instruction in a distance learning environment might not be taking full advantage of the medium. It was observed that online instruction might need to mirror more closely the way students actually interact with their technology.

Hackworth, Rhonda S. rhackwor@syr.edu
Syracuse University

Preservice Music Teachers’ Perceptions of Vocal Hygiene: Findings from a National Survey

Music education undergraduates (N = 140) gave the following information in a vocal hygiene survey: personal voice use and its impact on future teaching careers, vocal health ratings of behaviors, and vocal stress ratings of teaching activities. A majority (48%) believe the teaching profession is at high risk for voice disorders. Sixty percent believe vocal problems will have an effect on their career, but 68% of those would not consider a career change as a result. Drinking water was rated the healthiest vocal behavior, and smoking the unhealthiest. The highest rating for vocal stress in teaching was speaking over noisy classroom conditions, and the lowest rating was demonstration singing. Instrumental majors rated 2 teaching behaviors, “demonstration singing (alone)” and “demonstration singing with students also singing”, significantly higher (p<.001 & p<.05) for vocal stress than did vocal majors. Discussion includes implications for future research and current conversations in the music education classroom.

Hamann, Keitha Lucas haman011@umn.edu
Malone, Elizabeth A.
University of Minnesota

Operetta Performance at Ramsey Junior High School (Minneapolis): 1932-1966

After nearly a century of middle level education, music educators continue to struggle with creating an appropriate and challenging curriculum for young adolescents. One important way to build successful experiences is to build on successful experiences from the past. One such successful program at Ramsey Junior High School in Minneapolis, where over the course of 35 years, more than 67 operettas were produced. When Ramsey Junior High School opened in 1932, Lois Powell and Agnes Smith were among the music faculty. These amazing directors organized operetta productions as collaborative adventures for the entire school, sometimes presenting as many as four operettas in one school year. Over time, the number of performances tapered off as other activities joined the curriculum. After Smith retired in 1962 and Powell retired in 1966, the operetta era came to an end. This extraordinary string of successful operetta performances was due in large part to the commitment of the directors, the collaborations within the school, support from the music supervisors and a rich musical environment.

Harris, Maureen bharris82@cogeco.ca

A Comparison of the Difference in Math Scores between Students Who Receive Traditional Montessori Instruction and Students Who Receive Music Enriched Montessori Instruction

While a growing body of research reveals the beneficial effects of music on education performance the value of music in educating the young child is not being recognized, particularly in the area of Montessori education. If research of students in the school system indicates that learning through the arts can benefit the ‘whole’ child, that math achievement scores are significantly higher for those students studying music, and if Montessori education produces a more academically accomplished child, then what is the potential for the child when Montessori includes an enriched music curriculum? The decision to support music cannot be made without knowing music’s effect on academic achievement and its contribution to a student’s education. This study was an experimental design using a two-group post-test comparison. A sample of 200 Montessori students aged 3-5 years-old were selected and randomly placed in one of two groups. The experimental treatment was an “in-house” music enriched Montessori program and children participated in 3 half-hour sessions weekly, for 6 months. The instrument used to measure mathematical achievement was the Test of Early Mathematics Ability-3 (Barody & Ginsburg) to determine if the independent variable, music instruction had any effect on students’ math test scores. The results showed that subjects who received music enriched Montessori instruction had significantly higher math scores and when compared by age group, 3 year-old students had higher scores than either the 4 year-old or 5 year-old children. This study shows that an arts-rich curriculum has a significant positive effect on young students academic achievement.

Henninger, Jacqueline jhenninger@mail.utexas.edu
University of Texas at Austin

The Effects of Performance Quality Ratings on Perceptions of Instrumental Music Lessons

The purpose of this study was to determine the extent to which observation priming affects music education majors’ perceptions of instrumental ensemble rehearsals and applied lessons. Undergraduate music education majors (N = 52) were instructed to write clear and succinct statements about what they saw and heard during their viewing of a 25-minute stimulus tape, which contained seven teaching episodes. Half of the subjects (n = 26) were informed of the instructional goals, or targets, in each episode and were instructed to rate the quality of student performance observed in each. The remaining subjects (n = 26) were also informed of the targets, but did not receive instructions to rate student performance.

Hodges, Donald A. dahodges@uncg.edu
University of North Carolina at Greensboro
Hairston, W. David
Burdette, Jonathan H.
Wake Forest University School of Medicine

Aspects of Multisensory Perception—The Integration of Visual and Auditory Information in Musical Experiences

One of the requirements to be a successful musical conductor is to be able to locate sounds instantaneously in time and space. Because this requires the integration of auditory and visual information, the purpose of this study was to examine multisensory processing in conductors and a matched set of control subjects. Subjects participated in a series of behavioral tasks, including pitch discrimination, temporal order judgment, and target localization. Additionally, fMRI scans were done on a subset of subjects who performed a multisensory temporal order judgment task. Analyses of behavioral data indicate that, in the auditory realm, conductors were more accurate in both pitch discrimination and temporal order judgments as well as in locating targets in space. Furthermore, these same subjects also demonstrated a benefit from the combination of auditory and visual information that was not observed in control subjects when localizing visual targets. Finally, neural substrates in BA 37, 39/40 were identified as potential areas underlying the conductors’ superior multisensory temporal order judgments. Data collection and analyses are ongoing and will lead to an improved understanding of multisensory integration in a complex, musical behavior.

Hsee, Yun-Fei yuh101@psu.edu
Pennsylvania State University

An Investigation of the Interactions between Parent and Toddler during Informal Unstructured Music Activities

The purpose of this study was to discover the characteristics of musical interaction between a parent and her child during informal unstructured music activities. The research question guiding this case study was: does the parent interact musically with the child? If so, how and what is the child’s reaction? The subject for this study was one parent-child set participating in an early childhood music program consisting of nine weekly 45-minute classes. The qualitative research methodology employed observations, interviews, and questionnaires for the data collection. The data analysis consisted of reading and coding interview transcripts, the questionnaire manuscript, and rereading the field notes and journals. A detailed description of the case derived from the guiding question was compiled. All the information was encoded and categorized into general themes. Final interpretations were formed based on each of the themes identified in the analysis. Analysis of the data resulted in three main themes related to the guiding question: (1) parent action, (2) child action, and (3) parent and child interaction. The findings revealed that interaction between the parent and child included musical and non-musical behavior during the informal unstructured musical activities. Both musical and non-musical behavior prompted the child’s musical response. The parent’s verbal and non-verbal expressions also seemed to encourage the child’s musical behavior. Although the parent displayed no singing behavior, the parent was able to engage the child by playing with a variety of instruments.

Johnson, Christopher M. cmj@ku.edu
University of Kansas
Geringer, John M.
Florida State University

A Pilot Study of Music Elements as Predictors of Overall Evaluation of Band Pieces

The purpose of this project was to explore possible influences of specific music elements in the prediction of overall musical evaluation of band pieces. More specifically, we sought to address whether there would be patterns in evaluators’ assessments of particular music elements including balance/blend, dynamics, tone/intonation, rhythm/tempo, or musical expression that would relate to prediction of their overall assessment of wind band performances. Music major students (N = 84) enrolled in music degree programs in one of three large state universities served as participants. Listeners heard four wind band excerpts each performed by different ensembles at three levels of performance experience: We used recordings made by high school, university, and professional level ensembles. Responses indicated that listeners differentiated between the various performances. Most of the time, the specific evaluation of a music element that best predicted overall assessment was the rating for music expression, followed by the tone/intonation rating. For the less experienced groups, tone/intonation was the aspect most in need of improvement in their performances. For the more experienced ensembles, aspects cited as needing improvement changed from excerpt to excerpt, implying that problem areas were more piece specific.

Juchniewicz, Jay jayjuchniewicz@hotmail.com
Florida State University

The Influence of Physical Movement on the Perception of Musical Performance

The assessment of musical performance is a very subjective practice. Researchers have found listeners often use both musical and non-musical factors to assess music performances. The purpose of this study was to investigate the influence of physical movement on the listeners’ perception of musical performance. Furthermore, relationships between movement types of head and facial, full body, and no movement, by the musical elements of phrasing, dynamics, rubato, and overall performance were also investigated. Participants (N=112) consisted of undergraduate and graduate music majors from six universities around the country. Results indicated the pianist’s physical movements significantly increased participants’ ratings of the performances. Additionally, as the pianist’s physical movements increased so did the participants ratings of phrasing, dynamics, rubato, and overall musical performance. No significant differences were found for the same categories, however, when participants were divided by year in school, gender, and year in school by gender.

Keck, Danelle Danelle55@aol.com
Duluth High School, Duluth, Georgia and Arizona State University

Effects of Chamber Music Experience on Achievement of Band Students: A Pilot Study

This study investigated the effects of chamber music experience on the attitudes and performance skills of high school band students. The quasi-experimental design contained forty-nine students who were randomly assigned to treatment and control groups. Students in the treatment group were randomly assigned to quartets, and participated in seven chamber music sessions that each lasted twenty minutes. The author led the first two sessions, and then each of the four students led a session. Participants were expected to work together to lead the final session. Students were given the Zorn Music Attitude Inventory, edited by Carmody (1988), and a The Watkins-Farnum Performance Scale (1954) before and after the treatment period. A one-way analysis of covariance was run for both attitude scores and performance scores. Gain scores were also calculated. Significant differences were not found, but analysis of gain scores indicates that students who received chamber music experience showed a greater improvement in scores both in attitude towards music as well as in performance. This pilot study was short in duration, lasting for three weeks. Gain scores indicate that a longer study may provide significant differences between groups in attitude and performance skills.

Killian, Janice N. janice.killian@ttu.edu
Texas Tech University
Basinger, Lynn
Armstrong Atlantic State University

Influence of Voice Matching on Choral Blend as Perceived by Choral, Instrumental and Non-Music Majors

Choral blend is an issue of continuing interest to choral educators with techniques and recommendations abounding. One frequently described technique involves voice matching, i.e., testing and placing specific voices next to one another to achieve a blended sound within a section. The concepts of choral blend and voice matching techniques have been addressed most infrequently in a data based manner, and thus exactly what constitutes good “choral blend” appears uncertain. Therefore, this study was designed to determine whether listeners demonstrate any consistency in judgment when listening to voice-matched groups of singers, and whether musical training affects their judgments. Specifically we sought to explore possible differences among choral (n=15), instrumental (n=19) and non-music majors (n=21) regarding their quality judgments of choral blend excerpts created via voice matching techniques as measured by the Continuous Response Digital Interface. Results, as determined by graphic analysis and Pearson product moment correlations, indicated general agreement in judgments of “good blend” and “bad blend” among all three groups especially within alto and bass excerpts. Less agreement was found among soprano and tenor excerpts. Overall, greater agreement was found among voice majors who also exhibited a tendency to listen longer before making a judgment. Results are discussed in terms of differences between dependent measures, possible confounding between the concept of choral blend and preference for vocal tone quality, and suggested areas of future research.

Latimer, Jr., Marvin E. mlatimer@ku.edu
University of Kansas

Demographic and Social Characteristics of a Gay Men’s Chorus: A Pilot Study

This pilot study was an investigation of the demographic and social characteristics of a gay men’s chorus in the Midwest United States. Participants (N=87), all active performing members of the chorus, responded to a survey distributed during a regularly scheduled chorus rehearsal. Results indicated that these choristers were predominately White, well-educated, upper-middle class gay men with a mean age of 44 and a median age range of 41-45. Findings also suggested that primary reasons for participating in the chorus included (a) enjoyment of performing, (b) socialization with other gay men, (c) feeling of community, (d) enhanced self-esteem, and (e) a facilitation of the coming out process. Results were discussed in terms of (a) the function of gay men’s choruses, both within the community choir movement and as a possible agent of social change in their own right, and (b) recommendations for further research to be undertaken in the fall of 2005.

Levy, Katherine M. levy@fredonia.edu
State University of New York at Fredonia

Analysis of Middle School Instrumentalists’ Rhythm Reading Processes

This study examined the relationship between different music readers’ rhythmic structuring (visual, auditory, figural, metric) and the music reading process through detailed study of rhythm reading miscues (instances where notation performance did not match expected performance). Middle school band students (N = 36) contributed four data sources: individual videotaped sight-reading performances; reading interviews; notation practice and musical training questionnaires; and aural/visual discrimination tests. Eleven readers representing maximum breadth within the sample in instrumental performance skills, musical training, and aural/visual discrimination achievement were selected for detailed analysis. Readers’ (n = 11) rhythm reading miscues were analyzed using procedures adapted from language reading miscue analysis. Three judges transcribed and marked 1,441 miscues, which then were scored by the investigator using rubrics derived from a proposed research-based model of rhythm reading adapted from psycholinguistic models of language reading. Rhythm reading proficiency profiles were constructed by comparing readers’ cue use in four patterns (figural, metric, aural, visual) with data from interviews, questionnaires, and aural/visual discrimination test scores. Results indicated differentiated patterns of notation cue use for high versus low proficiency readers and for conventional versus inventive readers. Low proficiency readers produced fewer miscues that reflected functioning cue systems, were less sensitive to aural cues, and verbalized incomplete or confused conceptual musical knowledge. Proficient readers had higher patterns of metric and aural cue use and easily discussed rhythm separately from other notation components. Inventive readers (perceptual, intuitive) used more figural cues than conventional (training-related) readers, whose cue use was evenly distributed.

Lucas, Mark lucas@ou.edu
University of Oklahoma

Adolescent Males’ Attitudes about Singing in Choir

The purpose of this study was to investigate the factors that influence an adolescent male to enroll in school choir as an elective class and to assess his attitude about singing in general, his self-concept of his own voice, and his perception of others’ view of adolescent males’ participation in choir. Data were obtained from 101 adolescent males who were enrolled in choir at one of six participating schools, and were in grade 7 or grade 8. Data analysis showed that most subjects enrolled in choir because they thought it was fun and/or they were good singers. Results also indicated that peer pressure factored less than the enjoyment of singing in influencing their decision to enroll in choir. Other results suggested that the subjects perceived support from their families, principal, and non-music teachers in their decision to take choir and that they perceived slightly less support from coaches at their school. The study indicates a need for future research of adolescent males who have chosen not to participate in choir and their attitudes about choir participation. Future research studying the attitudes of adolescent males from other regions and their attitudes about choir participation is also recommended.

Mace, Sandra slmace@uncg.edu
University of North Carolina at Greensboro

A Descriptive Analysis of University Music Performance Teachers’ Sound-level Exposures during a Typical Day of Teaching, Performing, and Rehearsing

The purpose of this study was to describe sound-level exposures of university music performance teachers. Using personal dosimeters, sound-level exposures were measured across two work days. The primary research question was “Do university music performance teachers experience sound levels that result in dose percentages that meet or exceed standards recommended by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) or the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) in group and individual teaching environments during typical work days?” Over the time of a career, sound-level exposure that exceeds recommendations places a person at risk for noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL). Thirty-seven university music performance teachers wore Cirrus Research doseBadge dosimeters. Dosimeters were placed on a shoulder in a manner that would not interfere with performance on their instruments during teaching. Additionally, the effects of other variables on sound-level averages were examined, including, teaching specialization, type of teaching activity, number of students or participants in teaching activity, and performance level(s) of participants in a teaching activity. Thirteen music performance teachers (35%) experienced sound levels that resulted in dose percentages exceeding standards recommended by NIOSH for single days measured. Two-day averages showed that 12 music performance teachers (32%) experienced sound levels that resulted in dose percentages exceeding standards recommended by NIOSH. Five music performance teachers (14%) experienced sound levels that resulted in dose percentages exceeding standards recommended by OSHA for single days measured. Two-day averages showed that 2 (5%) music performance teachers experienced sound levels that resulted in dose percentages exceeding standards recommended by OSHA.