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Jennifer Sutton McDonel

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Jennifer Sutton McDonel

Biography

Jennifer Sutton McDonel,( b. 1970) is an American composer and educator.

Dr. McDonel holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree, summa cum laude, from The Ohio State University, a Master of Arts in Music Education degree from the Eastman School of Music, and a Ph.D. from the University at Buffalo. She holds GIML Certifications: Early Childhood Levels 1 and 2, Elementary Levels 1 and 2, and Instrumental Level 1; ECMMA Certification Level 3; and Orff Certification Level 1.

Dr. McDonel’s teaching experience includes early childhood music, elementary general music, 5th – 12th grade instrumental music, and undergraduate and graduate level classes in musicianship, early childhood, elementary general and instrumental music, and foundations of music education.

Dr. McDonel is a music learning theory specialist and has presented clinics on music learning theory and its applications in several states, regionally at MENC’s Eastern Division Conference, nationally at AOSA, JEN, NAfME National In-service and Teacher Education and Research Conferences, and CMS 61st National Conference, and internationally at five International Conferences on Music Learning Theory, the 2nd International Symposium on Assessment in Music Education, and to music teacher associations in Spain and Nepal.

Dr. McDonel’s research interests include measurement of music achievement, achievement and impact of early childhood music learning on children’s overall development, and impact of professional development initiatives on Nepali music teacher’s perceptions of self-efficacy and student learning. Her service is focused on bringing quality music education to all children in Nepal through teacher professional development and advocacy efforts

She was awarded the Distinguished Teacher-Educator Award in the Department of Learning and Instruction of the Graduate School of Education at the University at Buffalo in 2010.

McDonel is also is a composer of music for young band, choir, and songs for early childhood music classes, including A Joyful Noise (2004) and Appalachian Whisper (2006).

A commissioned work, Nittany Valley Sunrise, was premiered by the combined CCMEA Band and Choir in February 2011. She also collaborated with Richard Victor to compose Swingin’ from the Start (2012) and Chasin' My Blues Away (2015), a series of pieces written to provide young instrumentalists opportunity to learn swing style jazz interpretation and develop confidence improvising in a concert band setting.

Dr. McDonel is associate professor of music and director of music education at Radford University. She also is a faculty member and former executive director of the Gordon Institute for Music Learning (GIML).


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