Date on Master's Thesis/Doctoral Dissertation


Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph. D.

Department (Legacy)

Department of Leadership, Foundations, and Human Resource Education

Committee Chair

Keedy, John L.


School music supervision; Conductors (Music)--Rating of; Conductors (Music)--Training of; School music--Instruction and study


The dissertation builds on the research literature studying conductor training and the musical attributes requisite for adequate conducting skill and musical performance. The study also provides evidence that effective tools for evaluation of band and orchestra conductors are prevalent throughout the music education literature. Public school administrators, however, are generally unaware of that literature and often lack adequate assessment instruments to measure conductor effectiveness in rehearsal settings. Conductors have been teaching in the public schools for almost a century, however, many still undergo assessment procedures as if they were in an academic classroom. The study was assisted by the Michigan School Band and Orchestra Association (MSBOA) who provided a clean set of respondents representing middle school and high school conductors from the State of Michigan. Three research questions framed the study. The first research question identified to what extent the conductors' formal training matched up with the musical attributes requisite for adequate conducting skill and musical performance. The literature review provided the context for a comparison of these training attributes based on the frequency of those attributes found in the research studies. The survey results from the study respondents provided a compilation of the means and standard deviations of the conductors' formal training as compared with the musical attributes requisite to adequate conducting skill and musical performance. The second research question investigated whether the conductors perceived that their review process evaluated these same musical attributes. The researcher used a Pearson-Product Moment correlation analysis to compare the means of those musical skills received in their studies with the assessment criteria used by administrators. This method measured the strength of the relationship between the training and the assessment instruments used by administrators in the public schools. For the third research question, the study determined to what extent the review process contributed to their job satisfaction. The researcher used a regression analysis to compare overall job satisfaction with the evaluative process and with specific variables that correlated to job satisfaction or dissatisfaction. A regression analysis instrument measured the difference for each factor to determine the statistical association that assessment variables had with job satisfaction. The final chapter summarizes the study's implications for conductor assessment and provides a possible framework for use in Michigan public schools for administrators to effectively evaluate conductors. This proposed assessment instrument aligns the formal musical training attributes found in the literature with those of successful musical performance practices and offers opportunities for growth and continued development of the conductor.