Vincennes University

Case Studies

Vincennes University

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THE CLIENT:

Vincennes University Vincennes, Indiana Founded 1801

OnMusic Appreciation PROVIDES:

  • An online textbook with sound files and definitions of musical terms included in the text
  • Virtual note-taking
  • Pre-designed tests and quizzes
  • Customized grading features
  • TestYourself questions at the end of every chapter
  • Mobile access

TECHNICAL SUPPORT:

  • Free
  • Available to students and professors
  • Prompt callbacks
  • Friendly, patient, and approachable

TEACHING TIPS:

  • Review features like note-taking and the glossary with students early in the term
  • A professor should become familiar with the tests and quizzes before teaching the course
  • Advance planning is helpful for determining learning objectives, selecting materials, and creating assignments

With OnMusic Appreciation, Dr. Lisa Miller solidified musical comprehension,
increased retention rate and grades, and fostered active discussion.

“Connect4Education products and services are the best. We have used several of their
products in both our online courses and hybrid offerings.” — Professor Dan Miller, Vincennes University – Rated C4E “exceptional” for quality, design, and service.

INSTITUTIONAL PROFILE:

Vincennes University is a four-year and transfer college in Indiana focusing on majors in teaching and industry. Many students take “hybrid “ courses, which include online lectures as well as face-toface meetings.

SUMMARY:

The Department of Music at Vincennes University piloted OnMusic Appreciation in Spring 2011 in classes taught by Dr. Lisa Miller. Its goals were to increase retention, move course materials online, and encourage student engagement.

Results were compared across two traditional sections, 2 hybrid sections, and 8 distance learning sections. Hybrid class enrollments were 24 and 25 students; traditional classes each had 23 students.

IMPLEMENTATION:

OnMusic Appreciation includes an online textbook, listening guides, access to live YouTube performances, and auto-graded tests. The online textbook is divided into sections on sounds and instruments, compositional structure, and historical periods. While students read, they are able to: 1) click on a bolded musical term and see its definition; 2) listen to examples of music mentioned in the text and 3) take virtual notes. Professors can access and assign pre-designed tests and quizzes, as well as incorporate additional written homework. They can also set customized grading policies for quizzes, exams, and assignments.

For Dr. Miller’s hybrid course, she used all of OnMusic Appreciation’s quizzes and exams, and uploaded additional assignments. Once weekly, students met to discuss a piece from the Listening Guide. The Listening Guide features examples of compositions from the Medieval Period to the present, and contains written annotations describing the different musical elements present in each work. Afterwards, students completed written question/answer assignments, which asked them to make comparisons to other compositions. Dr. Miller saw that OnMusic Appreciation helped her students become more discriminating listeners. Regarding student assessment and grading, Professor Cole said that OnMusic Appreciation helped him to be much more efficient. He assigned all of the courses’ thirty quizzes, as well as a mid-term, final, and four written assignments. With OnMusic Appreciation’s automatic grading feature, grading was much less burdensome that in his traditional course.

According to Dr. Miller, “I really enjoy using the program. I don’t think I’d ever want to teach a traditional course again.” “Nothing out there offers flexibility as this does.”

RESULTS:

Dr. Miller found that OnMusic Appreciation increased student comprehension and retention. The more academically challenged students in the course reported that the Listening Guides aided their
recognition of challenging musical concepts.

Dr. Miller’s hybrid class had a very strong retention rate. Retention was 87%, while in her traditional class it was only 74%. The hybrid class also boasted higher grades than a traditional course (Fig. 1). In the hybrid class, 79% of the students received a grade of C or higher;
compared to only 56% in her traditional class.