Linda Thornton was appointed assistant professor of music education at Penn State in 2002, having previously served in a similar position at the State University of New York, College at Fredonia. Her research interests include perception and cognition by elementary and middle school instrumentalists, creativity discovery and development for instrumentalists, and teacher recruitment and training.
She holds Ph.D. and master's degrees from the University of Missouri at Columbia and an undergraduate degree from Northwestern University. Her public school experience includes teaching beginning, middle, and high school instrumental music in Illinois, as well as fourteen years of private saxophone and clarinet lesson instruction.
Currently, Thornton is an active conductor, clinician, and adjudicator throughout the United States. Her professional affiliations include the Music Educators National Conference (MENC), Pennsylvania Music Educators Association (PMEA), College Music Society (CMS), and the International Association of Jazz Educators (IAJE).