Theses Doctoral

The Effect of Self-Talk Training on Rhythm-Only Sight-Reading Performance Skills in Wind Instrument Students

Parkes, Kelly A.

Contemporary K-12 music educators use a variety of methods for delivering instruction. Comprehensive musicianship is at the forefront of their consciousness. Rhythmic literacy is part of many music curriculums and is an important facet of sight-reading. Some of the rhythm teaching methods and systems available to music educators include the Gordon Method (2012), Hoffman, Paletto & White’s Takadimi (1996), Harr’s 1e&a, McHose and Tibbs’(1972) Eastman Method, and Kodály. Each with their own literature dedicated to how musicians develop rhythmic literacy.

This researcher’s experience teaching wind musicians of all levels has resulted in the creation of a system for teaching rhythmic literacy called metric accounting system with self-talk training (MASST). Accounting is a method that teaches students (a) how to develop the skill of keeping track of musical beats as they occur in real time using an internal monologue; and (b) how to simultaneously place beats where they belong instead of solely deciphering how long each note is. Accounting can be applied to most rhythm teaching systems.

The test/retest experiment in this study explored the effects of MASST on rhythm-only sight-reading performance in 7th- and 8th-grade wind musicians learning in a classroom setting, with an emphasis on the self-talk. Findings of this study observed (a) an improvement in post test scores in the intervention group; (b) no improvement in the control group; (c) a lack of significant difference between the differences of the two groups; (d) a marginal gain in the average number of lines attempted in the intervention group. While low in statistical power due to sample size, these results show promise suggesting that self-talk training has some positive effect on rhythm-only sight-reading and perhaps student confidence. The limitations of this study would require further research conducted on a larger sample over a longer period to produce clearer and more generalizable results.


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Arts and Humanities
Thesis Advisors
Parkes, Kelly A.
Custodero, Lori
Ed.D.C.T., Teachers College, Columbia University
Published Here
February 15, 2023