Final Projects

The Master of Arts final project and the research leading up to it are the logical outcomes of a student’s graduate study and professional experience. Because of the diverse background and experience of the University of St. Thomas Graduate Programs in Music Education (GPME) faculty, students are able to undertake research using qualitative, quantitative, descriptive, historical, philosophical, or theoretical methodologies. Consequently, whereas all students demonstrate the ability to integrate ideas and communicate their findings, some will develop, test, and evaluate a music education problem, while others will gather and interpret historical, descriptive, or philosophical data. Completing the final project is an opportunity to make a significant contribution to the field of music education, with additional goals of providing information that will be a meaningful and relevant resource to colleagues in the program and to the author.

Michael J. Anderson
A value held by numerous education disciplines is that educational practices should focus on process and reflect those of professionals.
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Catherine C. Ratelle
Music and movement have shared a deep and integral connection throughout history.
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Anthony C. Boldt
The teaching of instrumental music varies greatly from teacher to teacher, district to district, and state to state.
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Luke Aumann
The intent of this paper is to explore how music educators can take steps to make their classrooms more equitable to students of all backgrounds.
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Sara E. Alswager
The purpose of this paper is to highlight commonalities that might exist between the Orff Schulwerk approach and the vocal jazz idiom as a means to share how both might function in the elementary music classroom.
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Colin Woelfle
Invented in the early 1840’s and patented in 1846, the saxophone has a tumultuous history, taking over a century to gain acceptance into academic circles and develop a method of study and repertoire.
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David Davis
An instrumental music curriculum that is only designed to teach students instrumental technique and music notation reading would not produce literate musicians.
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Andrew M. Elbin
This paper explores research and practitioner articles concerning vocal pedagogy for the child voice, and uses the collected conclusions to inform an educator’s original compositions.
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Kathryn L. Schuld
This project serves as a manual for secondary level music teachers who wish to create a contemporary a cappella program.
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Annelies L. Harmon
This project seeks to fulfill the need for a sequenced U.S. Christian school general music curriculum option from a Kodály perspective.
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Kari L. Moskal
Rural school districts are often victims of declining enrollment, lack of funding, teacher shortages, and increasing student poverty.
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Michael S. Mello
Popular music is present in the lives of students outside of the school but struggles to maneuver its way into the elementary music classroom.
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Sarah M. Luhrs
Social science research proposes that belonging is a central need for all people (Brown, 2010; Glasser, 1998; Maslow, 1970) and research in music education suggests that people can experience belonging in music settings (Faulkner, 2011; Parker, 2010; Rzonsa, 2016).
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Suzanne Hartwick
This curriculum project will focus on the effects of military service on the children of deployed service members and their ability to cope with the separation.
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Kristin L. Stitt
The Orff Schulwerk approach integrates a strength-based view of students’ abilities into the processes of exploring, imitating, improvising, and composing music by including students’ musical ideas in the creative process.
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Lauren Benish
Play and engagement are essential aspects of children's learning in many areas, but especially in the music classroom.
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Blake E. Schlarmann
On a global level, the senior population is the fastest growing demographic.
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Allison C. Schutte
Recognizing the benefits of a classroom that embraces and examines diverse cultures, this collection of songs and games provides a window into the musical heritage of children in the Bukoba area of Northwest Tanzania.
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Katie Thies
The fact that we live in a globalized society means that comparisons among countries are inevitable.
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Mary A. Ebanks
The purpose of this project is to support the importance of building community within the secondary choral classroom.
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Thomas M. Johnson
The guitar is still in its infancy stages pertaining to high school classroom education.
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Casey Barker
As standards-based instruction has been integrated into elementary schools, student-centered learning has become a growing trend in elementary education.
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Matthew Pedregon
Caused by adverse childhood experiences such as abuse, neglect, or exposure to violence, trauma has a profound effect on the growth and development of children.
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Meaghan E. Curry
Twenty-first century education encompasses many approaches based in constructivist learning theory, including project-based learning (PBL); science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM) instruction; and arts integration.
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Alyssa Ellson
High school music programs in the United States do not represent the full diversity of the school population.
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Brandon Nordhues
The purpose of this project is to arrange standard SATB world music for limited range tenor-bass high school choirs.
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Katelyn A. Larson
Research shows that contemplative practices can have a positive impact on teacher pedagogy and student learning at every academic level (Repetti, 2010; Sherretz, 2011; Langer, Cohen, & Djikic, 2012; Diaz, 2013; Motha, 2015; Hilton, 2016; Brendel & Cornett-Murtada, 2018).
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