Research achivements and interests.
This portfolio contains the details of selected writings, presentations, and creative works that were produced while enrolled in the University of North Texas Learning Technologies Ph.D. program.
The Writings page contains a selection of writings completed during the last three years of my studies as a Ph.D. student. Writings include a quantitative study, a qualitative study, a technical paper, a literature review, a reflection on a creative work, and two perspectives on contemporary music technology education in the United States. The variety of writings represents the scope of study over the last three years. The single most significant growth over the last three years of study has been toward a more scholarly approach to researching and thinking about education, technology integration, research, and writing that were not present in my previous published works.
My teaching and book, Teaching Music Through Composition: A Curriculum Using Technology published by Oxford University Press (2013), is predicated on the idea that given the available technology, the necessary music skills for composition, the mechanics of music composition and music theory, should be acquired at the piano keyboard and not through the understanding of standard music notation, a means by which music can be preserved and recreated. My recent research considers the idea of fluency in the language of music, rather than literacy, as the primary focus in music education for the student composer. It has been presented in a few keynote and other presentations highlighted on the Presentations page of this site. This work has also culminated in a chapter in the 2017 release of The Oxford Handbook of Technology and Music Education included in the Writings page on this website.
Of all the writing, I am most proud of the qualitative research study that sets out to explore the experience of some students at a high school in the United States who had taken a course where the primary focus of the course was music composition with technology. This study, First Time Music Creators: A Glimpse into High School Students' Reactions to Creating Music, was designed to gather students’ perceptions on creating music in a music technology class, their participation in the class, and what helped them to succeed in the class. As anticipated by the researchers, there was little difference in experiences of students who had some music experience in elementary or middle school from those that had limited or no experience. Additionally, there was little difference between these two groups regarding students’ experience with using music technology for creating music. This research was not aimed at answering or proving any particular theory. It was meant to gather information and notice what the students were feeling about their experiences in the course. This paper represents my first endeavor into qualitative research and one in which I was the lead researcher. The study has been accepted for publication by The College Music Society journal, Symposium.
I have been using learning management systems (LMS) in all levels of teaching, high school through graduate school. In addition to uses for online, hybrid or flipped classes, an LMS is a powerful tool for face-to-face courses as it provides teachers a venue for delivering course content in a clear and concise manner. Rather than just being a repository of information and stagnant assignments, the addition of vetted materials from companies such as lynda.com, Groove3, macprovideo.com, and other third-party providers of multimedia instruction, an LMS could offer students an opportunity to engage in advanced learning toward mastery of skills in specific content areas utilizing these materials through a safe and secure learning environment. The incorporation of multimedia instruction through an LMS will be one solution to providing on-demand digital assets in support of students' learning of specific competencies. Online learning need not be restricted to online courses but expanded to traditional face-to-face classes as yet another tool for instruction. The possibility for personalized learning with teacher/coach guidance is enhanced through this advanced course design within an LMS. The paper Multimedia Integration in a Learning Management System included in the Writings page represents a starting point for future instructional design, course creation, and further research in this arena. I look forward to continuing my work toward creating interactive multimedia instruction within an LMS and other available technologies.
For the last 10 years, there has been a movement led by music educators who teach technology-based music classes called “The Other 80%”. These music educators assert that based on research, on average 80% of secondary students do not participate in the music classes that receive the majority of attention and funding in schools, the traditional music ensemble classes of band, orchestra, or chorus. A series of articles, conference sessions, and websites has been established to promote the idea that we are more likely to engage “the other 80%” of students who are not interested in traditional school ensembles by creating music classes that offer an applied learning experience that uses technology as a tool for creativity and music engagement. A plethora of information exists about the decline in school-based music programs when students reach secondary school, alternative music programs for engaging students of all ages in music, technology integration into the elementary music classroom and secondary performance ensembles, how to establish a secondary technology-based music class, and pedagogical and curricular materials for technology integration into traditional music classes and for technology-based music classes. However, there has been no study that looks at the effects of implementing a technology-based music class in a secondary school. What, if any, impact does implementing technology-based music classes in a high school have on enrollment in the traditional performance ensembles? Are we actually reaching The Other 80%? These are some of the questions I hope to address in future research.
I am a musician. I enjoy performing and conducting professionally and look forward to sharing what I know with students. I have been the coach/teacher for an after-school club at Greenwich High School called the Nu Musik Club. The goal for the club is to provide an opportunity for any student to explore music making. Students are encouraged to compose and create music of their own, learn an instrument like guitar, bass, piano, or drums, learn the basics of digital DJing, or join a contemporary ensemble like a good old-fashioned cover band. Providing opportunities for students to express themselves through music is an important focus for my future as an educator.