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  • Thomas Wolff
    Thomas Wolff
    Carthage College

Thomas Wolff

Visiting Associate Professor of Education

Lentz Hall 332A

  • Biography
  • Education
  • Courses
  • Research

Thomas Wolff brings to Carthage more than 45 years of diverse experience in teaching, educational leadership, music performance and therapy, geriatrics, business, sociology and psychology.

He has performed on trumpet with the Henry Mancini Show, the Johnny Mathis Show, Holiday on Ice, the New York City Ballet Road Company, the Bach Chamber Orchestra & Chorus of Milwaukee, Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons Road Show, and the Charleston, W. Va., Symphony Orchestra. He served for 24 years as an exemplary judge for the Wisconsin School Music Association, officiating throughout Wisconsin as clinician and adjudicator for district and state school music festivals, in addition to serving with the National Teacher Corps in Appalachia.

In addition to formerly holding three church choir directorships, Prof. Wolff also held the position of music director of the Kiwanis Youth Symphony Orchestra of Racine, headlining with that orchestra at three international Kiwanis Conventions in Minneapolis, Toronto and Orlando, with additional performances at Disney World in Florida.

Accompanying his music endeavors, Prof. Wolff also held teaching positions in the Ashland, Ky., public schools; South Milwaukee Public Schools; Milwaukee Area Technical College; Gateway Technical College; Alverno College, Milwaukee; Northeastern Illinois University-Chicago; the University of Wisconsin-Parkside; and Carthage College. Holding department and division chairmanships, along with building leadership positions in public schools, he also taught graduate and undergraduate courses in music, sociology, history, economics, philosophy of education, and psychology at the above-named colleges and universities.

Upon retirement from the South Milwaukee Public Schools, Prof. Wolff joined the Carthage faculty in 2006 as a member of the Education Department, where his principal responsibilities include teaching courses in history and philosophy of education, educational psychology, advising students, and making supervisory visitations for student teachers in the public schools.

Prof. Wolff earned a Ph.D. degree with high honors in psychology and behavioral science at California Coast University. He also holds an M.S. degree in educational psychology and a B.S. degree in music and music education, both from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Additional graduate studies were done at Northwestern University and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Clinical work in music therapy also was conducted with Professor Leo Muskatevic at UW-Milwaukee.

He has earned the Consortium for School Assessment and Design Award through the Milwaukee Area Suburban Public Schools; the Collegial Award for in-Service Presentations and Staff Leadership through the South Milwaukee Public Schools; the National Arion Award for Music Leadership in the Community from the Lion’s Club; the Brass Bell Award for Youth Leadership and Community Service Award, both from the Kiwanis International; the University Honors Award for Education Thesis Mentoring and the Distinguished Service Award from the College of Arts and Sciences Education Program at Northeastern Illinois University; the Bishop’s Award for composing and performing an original work, titled “Seven Choral Acts of Worship,” for the United Methodist Church District of Southeastern Wisconsin; and was inducted into Delta Epsilon Tau, the national honor society for extraordinary high academic achievements and leadership. In addition, he has served on the board of directors of the Racine-Kenosha chapter of Phi Kappa Delta International Education Foundation.

Prof. Wolff is also a member of Division 15 (Educational Psychology) of the American Psychological Association and Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, the national music honorary fraternity. His research interests include the application of Howard Gardner’s Theory of Multiple Intelligences in a model middle school music education curriculum; motivation and attribution theory issues among reluctant learners; the socio-psychological effects of popular music in adolescent development; cognitive processing differences among gifted and talented populations; the neurological “grammar” in music processing; pre-frontal cerebral immaturity in adolescents and its relationship to risk-taking behaviors; and excuse-making, lying, and cheating in high stakes engagements.

His topical presentations to school district faculties have included “Oppositional Defiant Disorders in School Children,” “Attribution Theory and Explanatory Styles in Success and Failure Situations,” and “Applications of Emotional Intelligence in Adolescent Peer Relations.”

  • Ph.D. — psychology and behavioral science, California Coast University
  • M.S. — educational psychology, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
  • B.S. — music and music education, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
  • Additional graduate studies at Northwestern University, University of Wisconsin Madison
  • EDU 1010 Education and Society
  • EDU 2010 Educational Psychology and Assessment

Prof. Wolff’s research interests include:

    • The application of Howard Gardner’s Theory of Multiple Intelligences in a model middle school music education curriculum
    • Motivation and attribution theory issues among reluctant learners
    • The socio-psychological effects of popular music in adolescent development
    • Cognitive processing differences among gifted and talented populations
    • Pre-frontal cerebral immaturity in adolescents and its relationship to risk-taking behaviors
    • Lying, cheating, and excuse-making in high-stakes engagements.

Prof. Wolff’s topical presentations to school district faculties have included “Oppositional Defiant Disorders in School Children,” “Attribution Theory and Explanatory Styles in Success and Failure Situations,” and “Applications of Emotional Intelligence in Adolescent Peer Relations.”

  • Thomas Wolff
    Thomas Wolff
    Carthage College

Thomas Wolff

Thomas Wolff brings to Carthage more than 45 years of diverse experience in teaching, educational leadership, music performance and therapy, geriatrics, business, sociology and psychology.

He has performed on trumpet with the Henry Mancini Show, the Johnny Mathis Show, Holiday on Ice, the New York City Ballet Road Company, the Bach Chamber Orchestra & Chorus of Milwaukee, Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons Road Show, and the Charleston, W. Va., Symphony Orchestra. He served for 24 years as an exemplary judge for the Wisconsin School Music Association, officiating throughout Wisconsin as clinician and adjudicator for district and state school music festivals, in addition to serving with the National Teacher Corps in Appalachia.

In addition to formerly holding three church choir directorships, Prof. Wolff also held the position of music director of the Kiwanis Youth Symphony Orchestra of Racine, headlining with that orchestra at three international Kiwanis Conventions in Minneapolis, Toronto and Orlando, with additional performances at Disney World in Florida.

Accompanying his music endeavors, Prof. Wolff also held teaching positions in the Ashland, Ky., public schools; South Milwaukee Public Schools; Milwaukee Area Technical College; Gateway Technical College; Alverno College, Milwaukee; Northeastern Illinois University-Chicago; the University of Wisconsin-Parkside; and Carthage College. Holding department and division chairmanships, along with building leadership positions in public schools, he also taught graduate and undergraduate courses in music, sociology, history, economics, philosophy of education, and psychology at the above-named colleges and universities.

Upon retirement from the South Milwaukee Public Schools, Prof. Wolff joined the Carthage faculty in 2006 as a member of the Education Department, where his principal responsibilities include teaching courses in history and philosophy of education, educational psychology, advising students, and making supervisory visitations for student teachers in the public schools.

Prof. Wolff earned a Ph.D. degree with high honors in psychology and behavioral science at California Coast University. He also holds an M.S. degree in educational psychology and a B.S. degree in music and music education, both from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Additional graduate studies were done at Northwestern University and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Clinical work in music therapy also was conducted with Professor Leo Muskatevic at UW-Milwaukee.

He has earned the Consortium for School Assessment and Design Award through the Milwaukee Area Suburban Public Schools; the Collegial Award for in-Service Presentations and Staff Leadership through the South Milwaukee Public Schools; the National Arion Award for Music Leadership in the Community from the Lion’s Club; the Brass Bell Award for Youth Leadership and Community Service Award, both from the Kiwanis International; the University Honors Award for Education Thesis Mentoring and the Distinguished Service Award from the College of Arts and Sciences Education Program at Northeastern Illinois University; the Bishop’s Award for composing and performing an original work, titled “Seven Choral Acts of Worship,” for the United Methodist Church District of Southeastern Wisconsin; and was inducted into Delta Epsilon Tau, the national honor society for extraordinary high academic achievements and leadership. In addition, he has served on the board of directors of the Racine-Kenosha chapter of Phi Kappa Delta International Education Foundation.

Prof. Wolff is also a member of Division 15 (Educational Psychology) of the American Psychological Association and Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, the national music honorary fraternity. His research interests include the application of Howard Gardner’s Theory of Multiple Intelligences in a model middle school music education curriculum; motivation and attribution theory issues among reluctant learners; the socio-psychological effects of popular music in adolescent development; cognitive processing differences among gifted and talented populations; the neurological “grammar” in music processing; pre-frontal cerebral immaturity in adolescents and its relationship to risk-taking behaviors; and excuse-making, lying, and cheating in high stakes engagements.

His topical presentations to school district faculties have included “Oppositional Defiant Disorders in School Children,” “Attribution Theory and Explanatory Styles in Success and Failure Situations,” and “Applications of Emotional Intelligence in Adolescent Peer Relations.”

Brief Bio

Professor Thomas Wolff brings to Carthage more than 45 years of diverse experience in teaching, educational leadership, music performance and therapy, geriatrics, business, sociology, and psychology. He teaches courses in history and philosophy of education, and educational psychology and assessment.

Title

Visiting Associate Professor of Education

Email Address

twolff@carthage.edu

Phone Number

262-551-2378

Office Location

Lentz Hall 332A

Education

  • Ph.D. — psychology and behavioral science, California Coast University
  • M.S. — educational psychology, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
  • B.S. — music and music education, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
  • Additional graduate studies at Northwestern University, University of Wisconsin Madison

Courses

  • EDU 1010 Education and Society
  • EDU 2010 Educational Psychology and Assessment

Research Interests

Prof. Wolff’s research interests include:

    • The application of Howard Gardner’s Theory of Multiple Intelligences in a model middle school music education curriculum
    • Motivation and attribution theory issues among reluctant learners
    • The socio-psychological effects of popular music in adolescent development
    • Cognitive processing differences among gifted and talented populations
    • Pre-frontal cerebral immaturity in adolescents and its relationship to risk-taking behaviors
    • Lying, cheating, and excuse-making in high-stakes engagements.

Prof. Wolff’s topical presentations to school district faculties have included “Oppositional Defiant Disorders in School Children,” “Attribution Theory and Explanatory Styles in Success and Failure Situations,” and “Applications of Emotional Intelligence in Adolescent Peer Relations.”

  • Quick Facts

    • Carthage is named a Best Midwestern College by The Princeton Review (2017), a designation given to only 25 percent of four-year schools.

    • Scheduled to open in fall 2018, a new residential tower will offer suite-style housing and two floors of shared campus spaces for gaming, cooking, group meetings, or quiet studying. Learn more about The Tower

    • You’re going to need brain fuel. Grab a morning coffee and a snack and Starbucks or Einstein Bros. Bagels. Later, meet friends at “The Caf,” where the specials change daily but the staples are constant, or swing through “The Stu” for wins, a burrito, or a sub. A new option, Carthage Cash, even covers some off-campus meals.

    • 96% of Carthage alumni report that they have secured a job or are continuing their studies six months after graduation. Visit Career Services.

    • 91% of employers say critical thinking, communication, and problem-solving skills matter more than your major when it comes to career success. Learn more about how the liberal arts prepare you for a successful career.

    • Lots of schools wear the four-year label. Carthage stands behind it. 95% of Carthage graduates earn their degrees in four years. Learn more

    • Oscars. Emmys. Tonys. Golden Globes. The playwrights we’ve brought in have them. Each year, the Carthage Theatre Department commissions an original script by a renowned playwright for its New Play Initiative. Carthage students then work with the writer to stage it. 

    • Looking to teach? Count on becoming a familiar face in local schools. Carthage students accumulate 135 hours in local classrooms before their student teaching semester. Make that 450+ for those entering our new urban teacher program.

    • As a freshman in the highly selective Honors Program, learn how to gain expertise in anything from music to forest ecology. After that, tackle a contemporary social, economic, or political problem. If you like, you can live on an Honors-only floor of a Carthage residence hall. 

    • In 2016 and 2017, Carthage was named a top producer of Fulbright Scholars by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

    • Things look new at Carthage because they are. Our athletic and recreation center, student union, computer labs, audiovisual production suite, and numerous residence halls have all been constructed or newly renovated in the last 10 years. Our new science center caps it off.

    • Carthage offers majors, minors and concentrations in more than 50 areas of study, from archaeology to athletic training, neuroscience to music theatre.

    • Our Summer Undergraduate Research Experience offers select students a research budget, one-on-one mentoring with a professor, and 10 weeks of analyzing, deciphering — and getting paid.

    • So the lake is kind of a focal point, but there’s a lot more to love about our campus — like the fact that our 80-acre campus is also an arboretum and wildlife sanctuary. Focused on keeping campus lush forever, we plant between 50 and 75 new trees every year from a variety of species.

    • Carthage was founded in 1847. That’s more than 170 years of leaders, makers, and go-getters going out and going forth. Read more about Carthage’s rich history.

    • More than 90 percent of our students receive financial aid, a hefty chunk of which is scholarships and grants — including $1.25 million annually from the Presidential Scholarship Competition and numerous Merit Scholarships. Learn what’s available.

    • Abraham Lincoln was an early Trustee of the College, and U.S. Secretary of State John Hay was a Carthage alum. The two still have a proud place on our campus. Spend some time with them in our Sesquicentennial Plaza. On warm days you’ll find professors leading their classes here.

    • Come to Carthage; hear yourself think — think … think …
      Legend has it that Sesquicentennial Plaza holds a perfect echo. Just stand with both your feet on the “1847,” face Straz, and start talking. “You’re the only one who can hear you, but you’ll be crystal clear,” promises English and theatre alumna Mikaley Osley.

    • Our Great Lake provides Carthage students with some amazing views. Think classes on the beach, lake views from the lab, and sunrises from your dorm room. “I love waking up in the morning with the sun shining off the lake. Nothing compares to the view in the morning,” says biology and neuroscience major Ann O’Leary.

    • Carthage awards up to 30 Presidential Scholarships each year, which range from 75% tuition up to full tuition, room, and board. Learn more.

    • For a full decade, NASA has selected Carthage students to conduct research aboard its zero-gravity aircraft. Lately, the stakes have risen. A team of underclassmen is grinding to prepare a tiny but powerful Earth-imaging satellite for launch to the International Space Station. Learn more about the space sciences at Carthage

    • Carthage is the only college or university in the Midwest where every freshman takes a full-year sequence of foundational texts of the Western intellectual tradition. Learn about the Carthage core.

    • With a student-faculty ratio of 12:1, your professors will know who you are. They will also know who you want to be — and how to get you there. Meet our faculty.

    • There are more than 120 student organizations on campus, from Amnesty International to Chemistry Club, to Frisbee and Latin Belly Dancing. See how easy it is to get involved.

    • True story: There are more than 27 art galleries, a dozen museums, and nine theatres within 25 miles of Carthage. Some highlights: The nationally recognized Racine Art Museum, the world-renowned Art Institute of Chicago, and the Milwaukee Art Museum. Learn more about our location.

    • What’s better than one professor? Two professors. What’s better than two professors? Two professors from totally different fields teaching a single class. There’s debate. Discussion. Differing perspectives. This is where the magic happens. That’s why every student takes a Carthage Symposium.

    • Imagine presenting your original research at an international conference — as an undergraduate. Carthage is dedicated to undergraduate research. Learn more about current opportunities.

    • You can’t hide here — not with only 17 other students in the classroom with you. That’s going to be rough some mornings. But later, when you’re able to argue your point of view thoughtfully, express your opinions succinctly, and meet challenges head-on, without fear … Yep, you’ll thank us.

    • Carthage is ranked No. 11 in the country for student participation in short-term study abroad. Every J-Term, hundreds of students travel all over the world on faculty-led study tours. Imagine a month in Sweden, Rome, Cuba, Senegal, India, Japan …

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