A Comparative Content Analysis of Music Educators Journal and Philosophy of Music Education Review (1993–2012)

Document Type


Publication Date


Publication Title

Journal of Research in Music Education






Two journals reflecting the interests and concerns of music educators are Music Educators Journal (MEJ) and Philosophy of Music Education Review (PMER). The purpose of this study was to explore the interests of P–12 music teachers and university faculty as represented by the topics of articles in MEJ and PMER from 1993 to 2012. After identifying the primary topic of articles at least two pages in length (N = 889), we determined the number of articles and pages published in each topic area within each journal. A chi-square analysis indicated topics within journals did not occur with equal probability (p < .001). The most frequently occurring topics in MEJ were curriculum (21.15%), performance (15.86%), and fieldwork (9.02%). The most frequently occurring topics in PMER were interview (15.45%), philosophy to school (11.79%), and performance (10.57%). Performance was the only topic common to both journals for their five most frequently occurring topics. Topics also were examined in 5-year increments, showing topic frequency was more consistent across time for MEJ than for PMER. In MEJ, the topics creativity and technology appeared less frequently over time, while performance and social justice increased. In PMER, marginalization articles decreased, while creativity, research/critical inquiry, and performance increased.