Struktur Subjektiver Theorien über Musikalität und Validierung eines Messinstruments
Structure of Theory of Musicality and Validation of a Measuring Instrument

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Miriam Eisinger


Musicians are born, not made. This belief is held by a majority of the general population, musicians and music teachers. In the framework of this belief musicality is seen as stable and inherent. This entity view of the Implicit Theory of Musicality contrasts with the incremental view in which musical abilities are seen as malleable and learnable. However, an incremental Implicit Theory of Musicality is an important prerequisite for the development of individual musical potentials. In order to be able to asses these Implicit Theories of Musicality, the aim of the present study was to validate the structure of Implicit Theories in the domain of music with an English and German version of a standardised measurement instrument. Therefore English (n = 595, 71.6% female, M = 13.49, SD = 1.74) and German (n = 385, 53.2% female, M = 10.51, SD = 0.71) students completed a self-report inventory, which was adapted for the music domain. The results of the reliability analysis and the confirmatory factor analysis suggest a multidimensional, hierarchical construct, which contains two second-order-factors (Entity and Incremental) and distinguishes between the origin and the stability of musicality with four first-order-factors (Learning vs. Gift and Improvement vs. Stable). The new measurement instrument allows to quantify individual differences in the attitudes towards one own’s musical ability and determine the importance of Implicit Theories of Musicality for the general development of musical abilities.

implicit theories; musicality; students; questionnaire; validation; motivation; attitude

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