AbstractsEducation Research & Administration

Student perceptions of skills learned in undergraduate applied trumpet lessons

by Jennifer C Brown

Institution: University of Illinois – Urbana-Champaign
Year: 2015
Keywords: Applied lessons; applied music; private lessons; music instruction; higher education; trumpet
Posted: 02/05/2017
Record ID: 2093795
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/2142/87986


The applied lesson is the cornerstone of undergraduate music education. Although this setting has trained musicians for centuries, it remains chronically under-researched. While a growing body of research with regard to evaluation, observation, models, and the student-teacher relationship within the applied lesson is developing, little research regarding student perceptions of the applied lesson has been conducted. This warrants research because a student’s perceptions—formed, among other things, by background, experiences and expectations—may not coincide with reality. Understanding student perceptions will provide applied instructors with valuable information regarding optimal lesson focus and structure. Accordingly, this study aims to identify and quantitatively evaluate student perceptions in undergraduate applied trumpet lessons. For the purpose of this analysis, skills learned within in the applied trumpet lesson were categorized into two groups: trumpet specific and non-trumpet specific skills. The trumpet specific skills studied are articulation/tonguing, flexibility/lip slurs, improvisation, intonation, range, rhythm, phrasing, scales/arpeggios, style, tone, and transposition. The non-trumpet specific skills comprise audition skills, collaborative skills, knowledge of literature, listening skills, pedagogy skills, performance skills, planning/scheduling skills, practice techniques, research skills, and self-analysis skills. Qualified respondents (N = 89) from 27 universities in 10 Midwestern states answered questions via a web-based survey instrument. After answering several demographic questions, respondents were asked: (i) whether they desired to master/attain each trumpet specific and non-trumpet specific skill; (ii) to self-report their competency with respect to each such skill; and (iii) to rate the importance of each skill. Three skills emerged as the least desired, with the lowest self-reported skill level and the lowest level of importance: improvisation, transposition and research skills. For improvisation and research skills, respondents who did not want to master/attain such skills reported a significantly lower ability level than respondents who desired to master/attain these skills. The desire to master transposition varied by degree program, with students enrolled in (or recent graduates of) a Bachelor of Arts or Sciences degree program less likely to desire to master the skill than students enrolled (or recent graduates of) Bachelor of Music Performance and Bachelor of Music Education degree programs. More broadly, for 12 of the 21 skills studied, students pursuing (or recent graduates of) Bachelor of Music Performance degrees rated themselves as significantly more skilled than students pursuing (or recent graduates of) Bachelor of Music Education and Bachelor of Arts or Science degree programs. Students further along in their education self-reported a higher skill level than their less experienced colleagues. Collaborative skills had the highest self-reported skill level of all… Advisors/Committee Members: DeNardo, Gregory F. (advisor), Magee, Jeffrey (Committee Chair), Daval, Charles (committee member), Romm, Ronald (committee member), Taylor, Stephen A. (committee member).