Date of Award

Fall 1984

Document Type

Dissertation - Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Ivanoff, John

Second Advisor

Siderits, Mary Anne

Third Advisor

Dupius, A.


The Vernon-Zander Harmonic Discrimination Test (1974) included seventy-two sets of musical stimuli and a twenty item questionnaire designed for college populations. The present study is a revision of the 1974 test to make it appropriate for use with a secondary school population. The questionnaire was changed to reflect the grade levels of the present population sample. The test was professionally recorded with appropriately changed directions and was administered to 1,289 subjects in grades 7-12 in selected Milwaukee urban and suburban schools. The groups tested included identified musicians and non-musicians. Also included was a select group of outstanding school musicians from the Greater Milwaukee Youth Wind Ensemble. 1,257 usable protocols were collected. Item analyses were run with the result that the questionnaire was kept intact and the number of musical stimuli was reduced to sixty items. The test (HDT-R) then consisted of eighty-four items of which eighty-one were scored. Internal consistency was reported as .68. Reliability was established by split-half, parallel forms and by the coefficient alpha technics which were consistent and estimated to be .82. Validity was reported in several forms including face validity, construct validity and empirical or statistical validity. Two and three-way ANOVA's and Newman-Keuls Post Hoc tests were used to analyze the HDT (musical stimuli), the questionnaire and the HDT-R (total test). The sample included groups identified as musicians and non-musicians; students in grade levels 7-12; urban or suburban students; white and non-white racially identified students; and a select musical group. Main effects and interactions were studied resulting in identification of statistically significant differences within and between groups. Analysis comparing interest/exposure with experience/achievement items on the questionnaire to the results on the HDT and the HDT-R was accomplished. Norms tables were established. Results include: 1--Musicians scored significantly higher than non-musicians; 2--There was a significant increase in scores from lower to higher grade levels; 3--There was no significant difference found between urban and suburban students; 4--White musicians scored significantly higher than non-white musicians; 5--The select group of outstanding school musicians scored significantly higher than any other group; 6--The HDT score could be more accurately predicted from achievement/experience than from exposure/interest. Recommendations were made for further research.



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