Music Humanities

Jan 2020

Professor Fogg is a quirky and knowledgeable music teacher. His class was pretty well planned out and he knew what he was doing in touching on all the terms needed for the midterm/final. While the class itself wasn't full of enthusiasm, it was still interesting enough and Fogg would occasionally show really cool breakdowns of the pieces he made. The midterm/final are entirely listening based (identifying known pieces or the period of unknown ones) so this can be better or worse for some people. The two papers were relatively leniently graded. Overall a solid professor.

Apr 2019

Avoid her. If she doesn't like you, you probably won't get a good grade.

Apr 2019

She's not bad but she's not that good either. Nothing special... If you can find another professor, I recommend you change sections. If you stay in this class just try to talk a lot....

Sep 2018

Matthew is a fairly good teacher who means well. He teaches the class such that it is accessible to students with no musical background whatsoever, but I found that he was not the best at describing more technical concepts without jargon. He can come across as very formal and reserved, but he is good-natured and really wants all of his students to leave with a greater appreciation of music regardless of background. Most of the assessments rely very little on technical knowledge. His midterm and final were structured the same way: multiple choice/fill in the blank, listening ID based on an abbreviated list of pieces (~10 for the midterm and ~17 for the final, and IDs were not cumulative), mystery ID (a piece we had not heard before where we identified features rather than composer and time period), short essay, and short answer (on the final only). You could rely a lot on historical context and musical trends for the exams, although some of the multiple choice questions featured historical details or vocab words that were only briefly mentioned in class. He gives almost no direction on how to study for exams aside from the format of the questions, but if you review your class notes very thoroughly and review the main points of the Cook readings you'll be okay. You need to have the listening IDs down pat as there is no way to get around knowing composer and time period (not exact date), especially for the final where the works were less dramatically distinct from one another. However, he is not trying to trick you on the IDs. He is also a stringent grader. That does not mean he is unreasonable, but for example he gives you a percent grade on participation (so don't expect an automatic 100% freebie like other core classes). Take him up on reviewing drafts for writing assignments, and be creative/have an argument so you're not just regurgitating the Cook ("Music: A Very Short Introduction"). Most people got feedback on their first writing assignment that there was too much summary.

Jun 2018

Sure yes, this class is demanding and you may feel frustrated with the workload and start resenting the professor, but this class is doable, and Mailman is very passionate about music and teaching. For a 3 credit class you are going to have a workload more akin to a 5 credit class, and whilst there is a lot of preparation--reading the textbook, watching videos, doing the Mediathread assignments, there is also a lot of flexibility. Prof Mailman gives opportunities for extra credit both on homework and the exams. We had to write two papers, one on the opera which we went to together as a class and the other for a concert of our own choosing. He gave us ample time for both papers(several weeks) and provided detailed feedback. The final exam did literally take the whole 3 hours and was very content filled, yet there were many opportunities for extra points in one area if you may have struggled in another. I would say don't take this class if you are simply just looking to fulfil the core requirement and want to drift, but if you really want to learn about music, and are prepared for all the work that will come with truly developing a skill that you may have otherwise not pursued I would recommend this class.

Dec 2017

I didn't know squat about music, so inherently suffered when trying to memorize terminology, but Paula really made the class fun and encouraged any opinions on the musical pieces. Would HIGHLY recommend taking Music Hum with her, especially in the summer (for us non-music folk). Plus, she brings cookies!

Dec 2014

Paula taught music humanities for the first time this fall and was absolutely incredible. She understands that the core forces us to do things with breadth over depth but to make everything more interesting she only goes through one or two pieces of music each class to allow for enough depth to have fun with each topic. Her enthusiasm was what made the class the easiest to deal with, and when she wasn't particularly enthusiastic about a specific topic she made sure to bring in one of her musically inclined friends that was (she couldn't play the piano for our Romatic Piano class, so she brought in a friend who was obsessed with and could play Debussy beautifully, for example). It was also great that she was able to combine her enthusiasm for the music with some critical discussion about why we study the Western Canon and old white men in general, which I don't think can be ignored when you're teaching a class like this.

Jun 2013

This was a great class! Prof. Robb was always organized, helpful and enthusiastic. Taking Music Humanities with her was a pleasure. The course load wasn't too heavy but thanks to her the class felt together rigorous and entertaining. The textbook covered five musical "first nights" and it was well written and interesting; we needed to read about 30 pages a week. We also had live performances three times! You also pick one of the five musical works and lead the discussion at the end of that chapter together with other students. Again, really a good class.