A Content Analysis of ACDA National Conference Interest Sessions: 1960 – 2013


  • Donna T. Ferretti University of Alabama
  • Marvin E. Latimer Jr. University of Alabama


Since its inception in 1959, the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) has hosted national conferences (N = 28) designed to serve professional choral conductors and choral educators. Previous studies indicated that such conferences primarily were comprised of live choral performances by invited choirs. That research also reported, however, that over 30% of conference events were educationally focused interest sessions (Price & Orman, 2007). The present study categorized and analyzed interest sessions (N = 458) by subject area, topic, presentation format, and ensemble/voice type listed in ACDA National Conference programs, 1960 – 2013. Results indicated that choral conducting and choral techniques was the most frequent subject area represented, followed by choral literature and performance practice, style, and interpretation. Vocal technique, vocal production and tone was the most frequent topic presented followed by multicultural music. Folk, pop, jazz, and rock was the stylistic topic most frequently present in performance practice, style, and interpretation. Like previous studies, choral literature sessions were found to be a high interest topic. However, unlike previous studies, the sessions about technology, assessment, and standards tended to be of low interest to ACDA.

Author Biography

Marvin E. Latimer Jr., University of Alabama

Associate Professor; Music Education Department Head