Master of Arts in Higher Education (MAHE) Theses

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

First Advisor

Todd Ream

Second Advisor

Scott Gaier

Third Advisor

Tim Herrmann


Music is one of the most fundamentally human forms of art and communication in existence. Since Ancient Greece, music has served as a central component of a liberal arts education, a practice that continues today. In the modern higher education context, students are often required to take an art or music course as part of the liberal arts curriculum. Despite the importance of the study of music, general music courses face many challenges in regard to student learning. Some of the most prominent challenges include increased musical illiteracy and the increasingly saturated and diverse musical preferences of the modern student. This study examined whether general music courses achieve the course-level and institutional-level intended learning outcomes at a specific institution. Through interviews and focus groups with general education committee faculty members, music faculty members, and students, this study revealed specific areas of connection and disconnection among the three groups in regard to the effectiveness of the intended learning outcomes. Based on these areas of connection and disconnection, the study also provides a set of implications for practice and future research.