Paper Session 1 (Friday 10:15-11:15) Salon A
Moderator: Bruce Ronkin

Student Laptops in the Entertainment Management Classroom: A Follow-up to the 2012 Pilot Study

Armen Shaomian
Assistant Professor, University of South Carolina

Does the addition of more technology in the entertainment classroom help create an optimal learning environment or simply distract the students?

This is a follow up to a pilot study presented at the 2013 MEIEA conference, examining the impact of allowing technology in classroom teaching. The study methodology requires students to decide during their first week of classes whether or not they will be using laptops in the classroom, and have to adhere to the decision they make for the entire semester. During the course of the semesters, all students have been given the same teaching materials and instruction. At the end of each semester, the results of the two groups have been compared based on those using laptops vs. those not using laptops.

Now in its fourth semester with a pool of almost 300 students, the study has continued to show that a majority of students (N=179) choose not to use laptops when given the option. Those who opt for laptop use (N=119) are seated in two “laptop rows” in the classroom in order to not distract those students who would not be using laptops. The results suggest that there is only a slight negative impact on the performance of those students who use laptops. However, further comparisons were based on sex, major, and participation in class discussions and those breakdowns show some surprising results that will be presented at the conference, further assisting educators in the most effective way of using technology in classroom teaching, as well as allowing students to use laptops and tablets more effectively in the entertainment classroom. In one comparison, minors who tend to be juniors and seniors, fare better with laptop use vs. majors who tend to be incoming freshmen who choose to use laptops.

This study will be continued through the end of the 2013-2014 school year, adding an additional 70 students, extending the pool with a total of approximately 360 participants.

The intent is to compare technology use versus grades and also a comparison on majors vs. minors in the entertainment management classroom.

Reflections on the Music Industrial Complex: Toward a Model of Grassroots Production and Marketing

Shawn David Young
Assistant Professor of Music
Clayton State University

Modernity and industrial models of production are two parts of the same coin. Despite its attention on progress, Modernity has to a certain extent yielded to the reflexivity of what is often sheepishly referred to as “postmodern.” Although we are all well aware of the debates that seem to divide the academy over these terms, most agree that categories and identities have undergone (at the very least) a remapping, a paradigm that is morphing in response to new technologies. Indeed, the most truculent form of the shift to “postmodernity” can been seen in how language is treated and, more importantly, how “representation” affects meaning.

While it is true that “postmodern theory” (nebulous as it may be) has for a number of years chipped away at stable categories of meaning, the more salient categorical shifts can (I argue) be seen in power relations; specifically, top-down versus bottom-up. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the changes now occurring in media and entertainment. It is no secret that the music industry is changing into something quite different. The corporate model of production (what I will call the “music industrial complex”) is collapsing; giving way to a model of production that celebrates decentralized power. But what will this mean for the future of popular music? How will it be funded? And how will musicians fare in the new music economy?