The Effect Of Conductor Academic Task Presentation, Conductor Reinforcement, And Ensemble Practice On Performers' Musical Achievement, Attentiveness, And Attitude

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Teaching and Leadership


Cornelia Yarbroough


Music education

Subject Categories

Educational Psychology


This study examined the effect of conductor academic task presentation, reinforcement, and student performance on attentiveness, achievement, and attitude of members of a university symphonic band. The band rehearsed five times under three treatment conditions: (A) conductor directions and student performance; (B) conductor academic task presentations, directions, and student performance; and (C) conductor academic task presentations, directions, student performance, and contingent conductor academic reinforcement.

Student attentiveness was defined as the percentage of students overtly off-task. Music achievement was independently rated by a panel of expert judges on the basis of audiotape recordings. Student attitude was assessed by a five-question student survey.

Results indicated attentiveness was a function of both performance time and treatment. All treatments resulted in gains for music achievement with Treatment B resulting in the smallest and Treatment C resulting in the largest gains. Student attitudes were significantly related to music, conductors, and their interaction. Student ratings of rehearsal enjoyment and conductor as a good teacher were significantly related to treatments, with Treatment C consistently rated highest.


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