Faculty perceptions of music In general studies courses in South Carolina two-year colleges
Sprankle, Jason B.
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Prior research has raised questions about different kinds of Music in General Studies (MGS) courses offered at two-year colleges, but few have addressed faculty perceptions related to student learning outcomes (SLO) and institutional missions. In principle, there is a demand on educational institutions to be accountable for SLOs, but two-year colleges present special accountability problems, because they serve multiple missions within each institution. MGS faculty perspectives can provide baseline data needed to demonstrate the ways in which MGS courses contribute to meeting the needs of students, the community, and the institutional missions. This study serves a broader goal of familiarizing readers with faculty perspectives on music education in two-year colleges. More specifically, it contributes to understanding how student learning outcomes of MGS courses are incorporated in light of blended missions as well as the challenges created by serving blended missions within a single music course. The following questions guide the research and focus on South Carolina, two-year college music faculty perspectives on MGS courses: (1) How do instructors of MGS courses describe the primary learning goals of students enrolled in MGS courses? (2) What student learning outcomes do instructors of MGS courses identify for measurement in their MGS courses? (3) How do the instructors' perceptions shape MGS content, textbook selection, and SLOs? (4) How are student learning outcomes measured in MGS courses? (5) How do instructors of MGS courses perceive the purpose of MGS within the institutional mission of their respective colleges? Following within case and cross case analysis of interview data, findings indicated that participants tended to emphasize "identifying the elements of music using correct terminology" as the most important SLO in MGS courses. All participants considered "performing music" the least important SLO. The majority reported their institutional missions as "blended" (transfer and vocational) and perceived MGS courses to be aligned with institutional missions.
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