Report on Assessment of F/Core within the Music Department

Submitted by: Amy Stanley, Associate Professor of Music and Assessment Coordinator for Music

 Geneseo’s Learning Outcomes for Fine Arts

1)    Students will demonstrate the ability to interpret works of art by analyzing appropriate social, cultural, psychological, and environmental aspects of the works;

2)    Students will demonstrate the ability to analyze and interpret works of art using the language of art criticism relevant to the art form under study;

3)    Students in courses that treat the history of an art form will understand the cultural dimensions and contributions of the arts;

4)    Students in courses that treat the history of an art form will appreciate the personal and cultural forces that shape the arts and how the arts in turn shape the diverse cultures of past and present society;

5)    Students in studio courses will demonstrate an understanding of the principles and elements used in the art form under study, and demonstrate sensitivity to, and creativity with, the medium.


 Method of Assessment

Due to high numbers in the F/Core classes, our department decided to assess students in ensembles during the fall semester of 2012 and students in academic classes during the spring of 2013, with the exception of one academic class (Musc 110) being assessed both semesters. 


I. The following music ensembles were assessed:

  1. Choral ensembles: Musc 160 01 (Chamber Singers, with 39 students enrolled and assessed) and 160 02 (Spectrum, with 32 students enrolled and assessed).

     2. Instrumental ensembles: Musc 165 01 (Orchestra, with 53 students enrolled and 36 assessed), Musc 165 02 (Wind Ensemble, with 36 students enrolled and 12 assessed), Musc          165 04 (Jazz Ensemble, with 4 students enrolled and assessed).


Ensemble directors, faculty section leaders or student section leaders recorded the assessment data, through value-added assessment.  A preliminary test was given at the beginning of the semester, with a follow-up exam near a final performance to measure the learning outcomes. 

The numbers below, though not reflective of full participation, represent those students who were assessed in performance exams.  The rubrics used for assessment fall under the “umbrella” of learning outcome No. 5 (e.g. Students in studio courses will demonstrate an understanding of the principles and elements used in the art form under study, and demonstrate sensitivity to, and creativity with, the medium):


Instrumental Ensembles:                                 Choral Ensembles:                  Total:

4 (exceeds expectations):         15                                58                                73                   

3 (meets expectations):             28                               13                                41

2 (approaches expectations):      9                               0                                  9

1 (does not meet expectations): 0                                0                                   0

                                                -----                             -----                             -----

                                                52                                71                                123




II. The following academic classes in the music department were assessed:

1) Fall semester 2012:

Musc 110 (40 students enrolled and assessed)

2) Spring semester 2013:

Musc 110 (sections 01 and 03 reported results, with 61 students enrolled in these two sections and assessed),

Musc 227 (14 students enrolled and assessed)

Musc 222 (31 students enrolled and assessed)


(Though requested, no results were submitted for Musc 123 sections 01 and 02, or Musc 110 section 02)

The total results are as follows:

4 (exceeding expectations): 74

3 (meeting expectations): 49

2 (approaching expectations): 14

1 (not meeting expectations): 9


total number of students assessed in academic classes: 146


Summary/Closing the Loop:

The total number of students assessed in the department:  269

The break down of the total number in terms of “exceeding, meeting, approaching or not meeting expectations” is as follows:

4’s (exceeding expectations): 147

3’s (meeting expectations): 90

2’s (approaching expectations): 23

1’s (not meeting expectations): 9

With regard to the applied areas, participation was highest within the choral organizations, even though the professor for those groups has no faculty assistance to gather the data and had to rely heavily on peer evaluations to complete the last value added assessment.

It is suggested that the applied instrumental areas, in the next round, gather data from all students, not just a small, random sampling.  It is also suggested that all groups participate in the assessment processes so that a clearer picture of student learning be presented.  In the future, the assessment coordinator will work more assertively toward encouraging stronger faculty involvement in obtaining data from all groups and make sure that the Percussion Ensemble, Musc 165 03, and String Band, Musc 165 05 are included.  Though the process is a rather onerous task, full participation is possible, as evinced in the 2009-2010 round of assessment.  Nonetheless, the instrumental area could afford more faculty assistance in collecting the data, as well as release time to review the results with the coordinator.

Within the academic area of the department, some professors were very helpful in collecting and reviewing assessment data.  However, faculty “buy-in” is still a challenge for the department.  Again, release time could be very useful in encouraging a higher level of participation.

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