Transfer students account for growing numbers in four-year music education programs. To better understand this increasing population of students, researchers employed parallel method design. One strand investigated music education faculty members’ (n = 83) perceptions of transfer student preparedness, procedures, and expectations to understand admissions processes (e.g., curricula, assessments) employed to evaluate incoming transfer students. The other strand examined music education transfer students’ (n = 12) academic, social, and personal preparedness to study music education in a comprehensive four-year music education program. The following research questions served as a guide for data collection and analysis: (a) What themes emerged for students throughout the investigation of the transfer process? (b) What are transfer students’ perceptions of academic and musical preparedness once making the transition to four-year institutions? and (c) What are college professors’ perceptions of transfer students’ academic and musical preparedness upon arrival at four-year institutions?

Findings from both student and faculty perspectives suggest that transfer students exhibit three common concerns throughout the transfer process. These concerns were academic, social, and personal. Further, transfer students’ preparedness also emerged as a theme mentioned by music faculty as an obstacle for incoming students. Themes also included performance on departmental diagnostic assessments, various modes of communication among music faculty (i.e., applied, classroom), students, and university/college administrative personnel. Researchers provide an analysis and suggestions for addressing these concerns from multiple perspectives as well as suggestions for future research.



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