Developing and Applying Assessments in the Music Classroom  book cover
1st Edition

Developing and Applying Assessments in the Music Classroom

ISBN 9780367194222
Published April 27, 2020 by Routledge
210 Pages

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Book Description

Developing and Applying Assessments in the Music Classroom addresses the challenges faced by today’s K-12 educators and future music educators who are expected to utilize and incorporate assessment data as a hallmark of student learning and reflection of effective teaching. Highlighting best practices while presenting current scholarship and literature, this practical workbook-style text provides future music teachers with a framework for integrating assessment processes in the face of a certain lack of understanding and possible dissatisfaction with assessment tools and tasks. Each chapter is prefaced by an overview outlining learning expectations and essential questions, and supplemented throughout by an array of pedagogical features:

  • Discussion prompts
  • Activities and worksheets
  • Learning experiences
  • Expanded reference lists

Citing examples across a range of musical settings—e.g. band, chorus, orchestra, jazz, and piano and guitar labs—Developing and Applying Assessments in the Music Classroom builds from the classroom assessment paradigm, encouraging teachers to create assessment tasks most appropriate to their curricula goals and planned student outcomes. Joined by fellow experts in the field Brian C. Wesolowski and Phillip Payne, the authors invite readers to explore and apply the material in authentic ways to inspire student learning through a comprehensive approach to educative assessment.

Table of Contents

Foreword (Richard Colwell) / Preface / Acknowledgements / Chapter 1: Historical Foundations (Kelly A. Parkes) / Chapter 2: The Purpose of Assessment (Frederick Burrack and Kelly A. Parkes) / Chapter 3: Assessment Across a K-12 School Music Program (Frederick Burrack and Kelly A. Parkes) / Chapter 4: Developing Learning Outcomes, Assessment Tasks, and Scoring Devices (Brian C. Wesolowski and Phillip Payne) / Chapter 5: Validity, Reliability, and Fairness in Classroom Tests (Brian C. Wesolowski) / Chapter 6: Performance Assessments (Kelly A. Parkes) / Chapter 7: Indirect Assessment Techniques (Frederick Burrack and Phillip Payne) / Chapter 8: Analyzing Classroom Assessment Data (Brian C. Wesolowski) / Chapter 9: Using Assessment for Program Improvement (Phillip Payne and Frederick Burrack) / Glossary / About the Authors / Index

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Kelly A. Parkes is Director and Associate Professor of the Music and Music Education program at Teachers College, Columbia University.

Frederick Burrack is Director of Assessment, Professor of Music Education, Graduate Chair for Music, and Distinguished Graduate Faculty at Kansas State University.


Developing and Applying Assessments in the Music Classroom is a practical, hands-on guide full of important information and activities for those who want to use assessment as a process for improving student learning and their own teaching. This must-read book pragmatically demonstrates the connection of assessment to curricular goals, program goals, and planned student outcomes by skillfully guiding the reader through all aspects of assessment, including the often-daunting practice of creating meaningful, functional, and efficient music assessments that result in improved music learning for students. This book encourages assessment literacy and skill building to support career-long interest in understanding how students learn, what they learn, and how best to teach them. 

—Ann C. Clements, Director, Center for Pedagogy in Arts and Design, The Pennsylvania State University

There is a void in the literature for music teacher educators who help undergraduate music education students examine how and why assessment is used in music classrooms. This workbook-style text—with learning experiences, worksheets, and activities—certainly helps fill that void. This book is scholarly, practical, and easy-to-read—a must for collegiate music methods classes.

—Glenn E. Nierman, Past President, National Association for Music Education

Developing and Applying Assessments in the Music Classroom is a great resource for developing assessments for specific learning targets, equipping future educators with the tools they need to inspire their students to reach their best potential.

—Denese Odegaard, President, National Association for Music Education

The learning experiences contained here—each stemming from actual practice and supported by years of research—will allow future and current music educators to develop proficiencies that will be applicable on their first day of teaching and throughout their careers. Parkes and Burrack have carefully delineated the best means to assess each of the inherent facets of music learning: the products of student learning; the processes by which they learned; the programs that designed to help them learn; and the best practices of the educators who support their learning. Developing and Applying Assessments in the Music Classroom will transform the work of music educators and, more importantly, support the vibrant music-learning community that engages teachers and learners in the amazing experiences only music can provide.

—Douglas C. Orzolek, Director of Graduate Programs in Music Education, University of St. Thomas

With Developing and Applying Assessments in the Music Classroom, the editors and authors contribute a valuable resource for future and current music educators at all levels. Through discussions of general principles and music-specific examples, readers will appreciate this book as a companion and guide through the often-confusing landscape of measurement, evaluation, and testing as it is encountered in the teaching of the musical art. It will be equally valuable to individual teachers in their own classroom contexts as it is for administrative leaders of music programs and program-wide teams designing and aligning music curricula. By approaching assessment of musical learning through the perspectives presented in this volume, as music educators we can increase the effectiveness, impact, and authenticity of our educational practice—to the ultimate benefit of our students.

—Bret P. Smith, Associate Professor of Music Education, Central Washington University