A Research Paper Comparing
Academic Achievement to
The purpose of this research paper is to find evidence to support the theory that connects academic success to musical education. The hypothesis for this research is that students with musical education will be recognized for outstanding academic achievement more than the general student body. This paper will prove the hypothesis by quoting studies done on IQ, academic standing, and teacher evaluation.
Musical education is an essential skill that should be recognized as a general education competency rather than a free elective. However, because music has become common to our culture, most educators believe musical education is unnecessary coursework. Throughout music history, band participation in band class has always been associated with smart, musically inclined students. I believe band could become more than that. Through my research, I have found links that associate band participation with very positive essential skills other than the ability to play an instrument. Band participation has been linked to create a positive learning environment in which students can gain self-esteem and motivation to better themselves at academics.
To prove my hypothesis, I have studied articles and looked at research comparing the general population of students to music students. I have also conducted interviews with experts in education, as well as conducted site observations to get a broader point of view on the topic.
For my articles, I have chosen five that best supports my findings. In my first three articles, I have found actual studies conducted on my topic. In “A Comparison of Academic Achievement and Instructional Music Instruction: A Study Comparing Four Maryland School Districts.” Doctor Keith Wharton talks about a link between musical education and intelligence by comparing MSA scores between musically trained and non-musically trained students. For my second article, “Music Lessons, Emotional Intelligence, and IQ” Glenn Schellenberg compares IQ composite scores and emotional intelligence between music students and non-music students. Then for my third article, “Music Makes You Smarter: A New Paradigm for Music Education?” John Vitale conducts surveys and small group discussions with over 100 educators on their experiences on the conduct of band students. Finally, for my last two Articles, the authors describe how the schools should handle musical education. In “Musical Intelligence and the Benefits of Music Education”, Richard Colwell and Lyle Davidson explains how administrators should introduce music education in elementary schools. Musical education is also defined in this article as a gateway to better academic success. Lastly, for my fifth article, “Reflections on Progress in Musical Education”, William Salaman explains how schools should handle musically gifted students while making sure the needs of the general student body are met. For my interviews, I decided to pick local informants that were directly related to musical education in schools. My first informant, Doctor Keith A. Wharton, is the current director of musical education for Kent County public schools. Doctor Wharton is also the symphonic band director of Washington College and the director of Kent County’s Eastern Shore Wind Ensemble. Throughout Doctor Wharton’s career, he has been involved in numerous bands and orchestras, including the Newark Symphonic Orchestra, the Mid-Atlantic Symphonic Band, and the Johannes Brass Quintet. Doctor Wharton’s main instrument of choice is the trumpet, but he has become familiar with all the other instrumental instruments including some non-conventional instruments as well. For my second informant, I chose the current Superintendent of Kent County Public Schools, Doctor A. Barbara Wheeler. I chose Doctor Wheeler because she seemed...
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