Scale Your Way To Music Assessment: Book Review

At first glance the title of this text may lead a person to believe that this book is devoted solely to using scales as a means to assess student performance in a music class. This could not be farther from the truth.  This book provides far more useful and far reaching information than simply discussing scales.

In essence Scale Your Way To Music Assessment walks the reader through steps to get all members of music department on the same page and set up a sequential system for developing a curriculum that will turn students into independent musicians. Although focused mainly on high school level music programs, many of the ideas and concepts can be applied toward junior high and elementary school music classrooms as well.

An Eight Step Process To Creating Independent Musicians

One of the big buzz words in music education over the last decade has been the concept of teaching students to be comprehensive, independent musicians rather than simply using class as a preparation for the next big concert. Scale Your Way takes this concept to heart, focusing the sequence of curriculum development around a central goal of having Independent Musicians Creating Quality Performances (IMCQP). This theme is repeated throughout the text and is the guiding principle behind the various steps in the process, allowing teachers to develop quality assessment tools while also using statistics and analysis of student responses to more clearly determine what parts of the curriculum are working and which need to be revised further.

Special Features of Scale Your Way To Music Assessment

{mosimage}At over 170 pages Scale Your Way is packed with useful information on each step of the curriculum development process. The book includes a section devoted to test making and assessment software although the list is far from complete and focuses only on the most well known programs.  Music assessment software such as SmartMusic or EarMaster Pro are not even mentioned. The book also includes a fairly detailed appendix with sample tests and other documents. These documents are also provided in both PDF and Sibelius formats on a provided CD-ROM. Teachers are encouraged to adapt and use these materials in their classrooms.

This text does what it sets out to do, in that it helps a teacher or group of teachers focus their efforts and develop quality paths toward educational goals. To this reviewer the title seems sadly misleading in that only one page of the entire text is devoted to "scales ", but the content contained inside is still of great value. For any music education faculty preparing to rewrite their curriculum or simply improve an existing plan, Scale Your Way To Music Assessment is a must-have text whose overall value far exceeds the purchase price.  Scale Your Way To Music Assessment is written by Paul Kimpton and Delwyn Harnisch and is published by GIA Publications, Inc.

 

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  • Guest - Chad Criswell

    This text does what it sets out to do, in that it helps a teacher or group of teachers focus their efforts and develop quality paths toward educational goals. To this reviewer the title seems sadly misleading in that only one page of the entire text is devoted to "scales ", but the content contained inside is still of great value. For any music education faculty preparing to rewrite their curriculum or simply improve an existing plan, Scale Your Way To Music Assessment is a must-have text whose overall value far exceeds the purchase price. Scale Your Way To Music Assessment is written by Paul Kimpton and Delwyn Harnisch and is published by GIA Publications, Inc.

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