The effects of teacher-directed versus self-regulated practice routines on undergraduate group piano students performing four-part chordal music
Hooper, Terrell Blake
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The purposes of this study were 1) to determine whether teacher-directed practice routines or self-regulated practice routines are more effective for students learning to play four-part chordal piano music; and 2) to investigate self-regulated practice behaviors of group piano students. Forty-five students enrolled in a third-semester piano class at a large university in the southeastern United States volunteered to participate in the study. Students were randomly assigned to either a self-regulated practice routine (control group, N = 24) or a teacher-directed (experimental group, N = 21) 12-step sequential practice routine. The study took place over eight class sessions. Pre- and post-tests were recorded during sessions 1 and 8. During sessions 2–7 students in both groups practiced the same four-part chorale; a different chorale was used in each session. Over the treatment period both groups made significant gains, but no significant difference (p > 0.05) was found between groups. Practice behaviors of group piano students enrolled in the study were examined using a questionnaire with five sub-scales: Self-Efficacy, Behavior, Motive, Time Management, and Social Influence. Each of the sub-scales was compared to performance gain and the following demographic factors: Gender, Major, Primary Instrument, and Years of Piano Experience. Within the constraints of the study, higher Time Management scores were found to be positively related to performance gains (p < 0.05). Significant relationships also appeared between Self-Efficacy and Years of Piano Experience and between Behavior and Primary Instrument.