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Assessment Data and Analysis

Pre-Assessment Description/Grading Criteria Before beginning the unit, I knew it would be necessary to see how much students knew about reading music. It was likely that a few students took piano lessons, and would know some about the content. The students have learned a good majority of the concepts necessary to read music, but have never learned to synthesize all of the information together in one piece of written music. The pre-assessment was a series of 13 questions. Students used the piece Child of Peace to answer the questions. Question 1 had three parts, and asked about pitches, tonic and dominant pitches. Questions 2, 3 and 6 discuss time signature. Questions 4, 6, 7, and 8 asked about navigation of a piece of music, and asked students to identify things by measure numbers. Questions 5, 7, 8, 9, 10 and 11 asked students to identify and define basic music symbols and expressions. The assessment was graded on a percentage basis, out of 13. Each question has equal weight. There were 18 students in the class. The following table demonstrates the number of questions in the pre-assessment answered correctly by each of the students. There are also charts dividing students by male and female.

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Pre-Assessment Analysis The average score for the pre-assessment was 31%. The average grades for the male students was 29%, which is very close to the average for the class. The average score for the female students was 31%, the same as the class average. The following table breaks down the test results by question, and shows the number of students who answered each question correctly. Question Q1 a) Q1 b) Q1 c) Q2 Q3 Q4 Q5 Q6 Q7 Q8 Q9 Q10 Q11 Correct out of 18 Students 13/18 7/18 0/18 2/18 10/18 10/18 2/18 3/18 9/18 2/18 0/18 0/18 14/18 Percentage correct 72% 39% 0% 11% 56% 56% 11% 17% 50% 11% 0% 0% 78%

Based on this information, a majority of the students knew the answer to question 1 and question 11. Question 1 asked about the tonic pitch in a key signature. The students have been identifying tonic pitches for several years. The final question had students identify a double bar line, or the symbol that indicates the end of a piece. Because this question was asked in a multiple choice format, it is not surprising that students were able to eliminate other answers and guess the correct answer. Questions 1c, 9 and 10 were answered incorrectly by all of the students. Question 1c had students identify a pitch on the staff. Pitches had not been introduced in regular music class, so it is not surprising that they did not know the meaning. Question 9 and 10 are Italian terms found in music. Other than general dynamics, Italian terms have not yet been introduced. This pre-assessment confirmed exactly what I expected. Quite a lot of the basic knowledge is present, but synthesizing the knowledge together to read music will be a perfect unit to teach to the choir. Post-Assessment Description/Grading Criteria After I gathered the results for the pre-assessment, I knew that my post-assessment would need to be altered slightly. After discovering exactly what the students knew and didnt know, I was able to figure out the order and sequence of the unit. Topics were broken down into music basics such as grand staff, bar lines and clefs, measure numbers, dynamics, time signatures and music symbols. In the pre-assessment, I had not grouped questions together. The post-assessment is similar to the pre-assessment, in that it tested the students on the same information, but was organized better and asked in ways geared specifically to the lessons that had taken place. Questions 1-5 ask students to match symbols to their definition. The symbols include dynamics,

tempos and one navigation symbol. Question 6 and 7 ask about time signature. Question 8 and 9 ask about key signature and pitch reading. Questions 10-12 ask students to identify measure numbers. I wanted to incorporate some sort of literacy and writing into the test, so I included a Bonus Question, that asks students what their favorite part of choir was. As long as they answered the question, they received an extra point for their answer. I decided against multiple choice questions on the post-assessment, because I wanted to know what knowledge students had gained, without simply guessing the correct answer. The test was graded out of 14 points. (Question 11 was worth 3 points). Each question has equal weight. The following tables display the scores of each of the 18 students. It is also broken down into male and female. The table also displays the scores from the pre-assessment, demonstrating each students growth. Keep in mind that the pre-assessment is out of 13 and the post-assessment is out of 14.

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Post-Assessment Analysis The average score for the post-assessment was 77%. The average score for the 5 male students was 67% and the average score for the 13 female students was 81%. Unlike the pre-assessment, the female students averaged higher on the post-assessment than the male students. However, this data may not be significant due to the significantly larger number of female students. The following table displays students percentages on the pre and post assessment, and the gain scores for each of the students. Student M/F 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 M F F M F M M F F M F F F F F F F F Pre-Assessment Score 15% 8% 8% 31% 31% 0% 31% 31% 23% 69% 46% 46% 23% 46% 23% 46% 38% 38% Post-Assessment Score 14% 43% 93% 93% 71% 50% 86% 57% 86% 93% 86% 93% 93% 86% 64% 100% 100% 86% Percentage Increased (-1%) 35% 85% 62% 40% 50% 55% 26% 63% 24% 40% 47% 70% 40% 41% 54% 62% 48%

This table was extremely helpful for me to analyze the growth of my students. Only one student had a lower score in the post-assessment than the pre-assessment. This student was a student with low motivation and low attention. This student was relatively quiet during all of the classes, and I believe is a daydreamer. His focus is rarely on the subject at hand. Aside from this one score, every student showed incredible growth in their scores. Where-as only one student had a passing grade in the pre-assessment, with a 69%, 14 out of the 18 students had passing grades on the post-assessment. In terms of letter grades, I was incredibly impressed with results of the postassessment: A (90+) 7 students B (80-89) 5 students C (70-79) 1 student D (60-69) 1 student F (59 and below) 4 students

The average percentage increased for all of the students was 48%. Male students increased on an average of 38%, and female students increased on an average of 50%. The difference between the male and female can be analyzed several ways. A male student had the highest score on the pre-assessment, therefore his percentage increase was lower than the majority of the other students, male and female. One of the male students also decreased by one percent on the postassessment. The following table breaks down the test results for the post-assessment by question, and shows the number of students who answered each question correctly. Question # Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q5 Q6 Q7 Q8 Q9 Q10 Q11 a) Q11 b) Q11 c) Q12 Bonus Correct out of 18 Students 16/18 18/18 15/18 16/18 15/18 13/18 12/18 14/18 9/18 15/18 14/18 6/18 5/18 10/18 17/18 Percentage Correct 89% 100% 83% 89% 83% 72% 67% 78% 50% 83% 78% 33% 28% 56% 94%

While creating the post-assessment, I grouped questions in a more logical sequence and format than I had in the pre-assessment. Questions 1-5 have students match symbols and signs to their definition. All students did well on these questions. Over 80% got each question correct. I am confident that these concepts were taught well during the unit. Question 6 asked students to identify the time signature of a piece, and question 7 followed up by asking how many beats there are in the measure. We took an entire class period discussing time signatures, and I had students answer questions exactly like these as tickets out the door. While I would like to think that students learned the information well, I do acknowledge that this concept is difficult to learn in a short few weeks. Only 11% answered this question correctly on the pre-assessment, so there was a definite improvement in understanding. Students have been discussing dominant and tonic pitches for many years, so I was not at all surprised that 78% answered number 8 correctly. Question 9 had the students identify their starting pitch. I was surprised that only 50% answered correctly. Pitches and notes on the staff is a concept we have been working on not only in choir, but in regular music class as well. However, in all of the note reading activities in their music class, students typically see and identify only one note at a time. Question number 9 required students to identify their starting pitch. They had to be able to locate the correct measure that they begin to sing, and know which pitch is theirs. There were two different voice parts, and a piano accompaniment. Students had to isolate the pitch I was asking for on their own. Questions

10-12 asked students to identify measure numbers. Students did well on question 10 and 11a, and struggled a bit on the others. Question 11 asked students to identify three different measure numbers. I pointed this out during the instructions, yet many only replied with one answer. I am going to blame myself for the confusion here. I needed to relay this information and instruction in a clearer way, that eliminated any confusion. Perhaps if I had left three blank spaces instead of one blank space, students would have answered all three. Overall, I am very pleased with the post-assessment scores. I knew from the beginning of the unit that students knowledge was very small and limited. When students start knowing very little about a subject, it is easier for their improvement to increase. The information they learned throughout the unit wasnt necessarily new. A majority of the concepts had been taught in their general music classes, and simply had to be synthesized into a larger framework, reading music.