Assessment of undergraduate students' music compositions

Chi Cheung Lawrence LEUNG, Yu Ying WAN, Yick Pang Anthony LEE

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4 Citations (Scopus)


This study aims to investigate and identify the criteria and parameters for assessing compositions, and how assessment can help students' learning. Participants in the study include three composer-assessors and six undergraduate music students. An assessment framework for music composition based on both the macro and micro philosophies of assessing music compositions was established. Assessment results, written comments and interview data from the composer-assessors and the student-composers were collected and analysed. A Rasch measurement model was the main tool for calibrating a stable and unified assessment scale based on subjectively rated data, and it provided a solution for standardizing ratings of assessors with different levels of severity in their ratings. The study revealed that both macro and micro aspects of assessing composition were important but assessors weighted heavier on the micro skills; supportive feedback and comments served to facilitate students to improve their works; and the framework was proven to be an effective tool in assessing music composition. Copyright © 2009 International Society for Music Education.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)250-268
JournalInternational Journal of Music Education
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2009


Leung, C. C., Wan, Y. Y., & Lee, Y. P. A. (2009). Assessment of undergraduate students' music compositions. International Journal of Music Education, 27(3), 250-268.


  • Assessment
  • Hong Kong
  • Music composition
  • Music creativity
  • Rasch measurement model


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