Publication Productivity of Music Education Faculty from 1989 to 2003

Productivity cover


The purpose of this study was to determine author productivity by faculty rank (e.g., assistant, associate, full professor) and assess author output in terms of single or co-authorship.

We examined author productivity from three prominent national journals within the eld of music education across a 15-year period, 1989 through 2003, and determined faculty rank at the time of publication.

A total of 725 articles were identified over this period.

Data analysis revealed expected outcomes regarding publication frequency and instructor rank. Data results and analysis discussed.

Need Statement

There is a need to determine professional publication practice in music education to encourage the formation of guidelines in colleges and universities that are fair and consistent across disciplines.

A comparison of academic rank and publication success is needed within the eld of music education.

An examination of the extant music education literature did not reveal articles investigating publication success as a research variable. However, music researchers have examined related areas.

LeBlanc and McCrary (1990) asked 55 music researchers to write a sentence explaining why they conducted research.

The researchers found intellectual curiosity, enjoyment, self-improvement, and perceived duty as the four general categories that guided music researchers’ publication efforts.

Along with these reasons, the authors also reported that music researchers perceived a variety of rewards for their efforts including tenure, promotion, salary increases, publication, and personal satisfaction.

Considering the important role that publication plays in the promotion and tenure decision-making process coupled with the paucity of extant literature on faculty publication within the eld of music education, there seems to be a need for more research in this area.

We pursued this study to better understand the nature of music faculty publication.

Purpose Statement

Therefore, the purpose of this investigation was to determine author productivity by faculty rank (e.g., assistant, associate, full professor) and assess author output in terms of single or co-authorship during the time period 1989 – 2003.


Of the 725 articles reviewed in the three journals, a total of 1007 authors were involved in producing the articles. Author totals by category and involvement, either as a single author or a member of a co-authored effort, were as follows:

Assistant Professors (356 authors, 35% of the total number (N = 1007) of authors involved in producing single and coauthored articles),

Associate Professors (204 authors; 20% of the Total Author Involvement or TAI), Full Professors (189 authors; 19% of TAI), Lecturer/Adjunct/Part-Time Instructor (32 authors; 3% of TAI),

Public/Private School Instructor (33 authors; 3% of TAI), Researcher not Affiliated with a Music School or System (39 authors; 4% of TAI), Students (98 authors; 10% of TAI), and Not Identi ed (56 authors; 6% of TAI) (see Table 1).

From the analysis of data, we found the most productive faculty members, at least proportionally, to be Assistant Professors during the 15-year period examined. While assistant professors only constituted 35% of the authorship efforts, they produced 47% of the published single-author articles.

Comparatively, Associate and Full Professors had approximately the same number of authors involved in research publications (n = 204 and n = 189, respectively), but Associate Professors were more active in writing single authored articles.

Perhaps, the greater author activity among Assistant versus Associate and Full Professors could be attributed to the importance of publication in the tenure and promotion process.

The results found about Assistant Professor research efforts were not surprising. However, the results uncovered surrounding Associate and Full Professors were not expected and encourage new investigations to reinforce or better understand those reported here.

We anticipated that with more experience conducting and publishing research there would be more single authorship. This result should be interpreted cautiously because this study considered only three periodicals.


One thought on “Publication Productivity of Music Education Faculty from 1989 to 2003

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s