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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The Effects of Music-Infused Instruction on Student Achievement in Secondary School Spanish
by LeBrun, Chad, Ed.D., University of South Dakota, 2019, 126; 13863627
Abstract (Summary)

Learning a second language (L2) benefits students personally, academically, and career-wise (American Academy of Arts and Sciences, 2016; Auburn University, 2017; Cutshall, 2017). According to the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL), the average U.S. student studies an L2 for two years (2017a). To become proficient at an intermediate level, a student needs to study an L2 for more than four years (ACTFL, 2012b). The problem is that the majority of students who are studying an L2 are only reaching a novice level of proficiency (ACTFL, 2012b). Failure to have a large percentage of citizens who are proficient in an L2 may also negatively impact our economy and national security (CIA, 2010; Cutshall, 2017).

The purpose of this study was to determine if the infusion of music videos into a traditional secondary school Spanish I curriculum could improve vocabulary, grammar, reading, and listening skills more effectively than the traditional curriculum without music. One hundred and twenty-seven students had their pre-test and post-test scores analyzed to determine how much Spanish knowledge was gained in a 15-lesson thematic unit of instruction. The control and experimental groups each had three class sections of students.

Analyses of covariance (ANCOVA) were used to determine if a significant difference existed between the two groups, while controlling for pre-test differences.

A statistically significant difference was detected for the vocabulary section at the junior high level favoring the music treatment. A significant difference was detected for the grammar section favoring the combined high school and junior high groups with the control treatment. No differences were detected for listening or reading comprehension or the composite post-test scores.

In addition, students were surveyed with five questions about their preferences for learning and their plans to continue studying Spanish. Students most frequently answered that they listened to music for enjoyment on a daily basis, they chose to study Spanish to be prepared for university requirements, they preferred learning Spanish though studying vocabulary lists and flashcards, and they liked learning Spanish. Junior high students planned to study Spanish for four years or more, while high school students planned to study for a total of two years. There was a statistically significant correlation between enjoyment of Spanish and plans to study it longer.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Reins, Kevin J.
Commitee: Card, Karen, Kindle, Karen, Turner, Robert
School: University of South Dakota
Department: Curriculum and Instruction
School Location: United States -- South Dakota
Source: DAI-A 80/11(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Foreign language education, Secondary education, Reading instruction, Language
Keywords: Listening comprehension, Reading comprehension, Second language acquisition, Spanish music, Spanish songs, Vocabulary aquisition
Publication Number: 13863627
ISBN: 978-1-392-26025-8
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