Andrew Haringer

This professor has earned a CULPA gold nugget

May 2011

I was lucky to end up blindly in Andrew's class. The core can be such a toss-up depending on whose class you're in, and I'm glad I was in this one. Here's what you should know about Andrew's class: You WILL get as much out of a survey course as can be expected, and you most likely WILL enjoy class. Andrew makes jokes like it’s SNL, and when he’s talking passionately about composers (as he’s also known to do) he’ll still be interesting and engaging. You WON’T be able to breeze through this class without cracking a book or coming to class. Andrew’s expectations go above and beyond the bare core requirements (in a good way, it’s worth it). Especially if you have a limited background in music, you’ll notice other students effortlessly acing the listening part of the quizzes, but everyone has to have come to class or done the reading to get the multiple choice questions. You’re expected to go on a number of class field trips (in addition to the required opera trip, a heavily emphasized “optional” trip to Carnegie Hall and other concerts). It’s worth it, and enjoyable, but I recommend not going to Havana’s senior night before a 9:00 a.m. quiz, thinking you’ll breeze through it. You won’t. That 50% looks bad on courseworks, too.

Jul 2010

Andrew needs a gold star! This was one of my favorite classes at Columbia, and I came in with little musical background. He really went above and beyond in this course - he'd make color-coded listening guides for our listening assignments, he'd break down pieces into understandable chunks on the piano (he's really good!), he made an effort to assign interesting and creative papers, he was always e-mailing us Youtube videos of noteworthy performances, and he had his friend come in and sing a Schubert lied for the class. It's obvious how passionate he is about what he teaches, but he still encourages students to disagree with him. I thought his grading was on the generous side of fair. Consider yourself lucky if you get into his Music Hum section!

Apr 2009

Give this guy a gold star! Good instructors are often very passionate about either their subject or their students. Andrew Haringer was the best (and rarest!) kind of instructor -- clearly passionate about both. The syllabus couldn't have been easier to parse, the trajectory of the course in general was clear, the level of class discussion was high. He seemed to genuinely care that we grow to love and appreciate music the way he does -- he would often send out e-mails telling us he'd be "remiss in not recommending" a forthcoming performance. He responded to student concerns quickly and thoroughly. With another one, I might have blown the class off and done the minimum amount of work required to get by (it is, after all, required), but Andrew made music important enough to me that I actually wanted to study and understand all the concepts. Andrew's liberal use of the "syllabus" option on Courseworks to post all of our listening and reading assignments and explain the general themes we'd be discussing for each class. It kept everything very organized and centrally located, which I appreciated. The listening guides Andrew often provided to go along with our listening assignments were also really helpful, especially at the beginning when I didn't really know what to listen for when closely listening to a piece of music. My only complaint is that he posted quizzes on Courseworks (four times through the semester on Thursdays), which we then had a 24-hour to complete -- they took about an hour each on non-class days, which was pretty convenient for me. Otherwise, awesome (and very understanding!) instructor.

Jan 2008

Okay, so he's over-eager. You can tell that he wants badly to affect all of his students' lives, to make them know music more in-depth than the average Music Hum class. He's just the right amount of awkward that it's endearing, and I have a feeling that a lot of the girls in the class had at least little crushes on him. The work load is a bit more demanding than the average music hum work load (our final paper was a research paper that had to have something like 10 outside sources), but he's also a wonderful person, eager to talk to the students, and a very good teacher. If you want to coast along then he might not be your man, but there were many times when we all laughed together and learned a lot, and I think I'm not alone in my admiration for him.

Dec 2007

Andrew is awesome. he openly admits to wanting to be awkward like the son on Arrested Development, and makes many corny jokes. On the other hand, he knows his shit so throughly and is very enthusiastic, to the point that even I began to love classical music. Really engaging, really fun. I'll miss him.

Nov 2007

I think the first word I would use to describe Andrew is awkward. But he's also hilarious, unpretentious, down-to-earth, and really, really enthusiastic about music. He genuinely wants his all of his students to enjoy the class, enjoy the subject, and form their own opinions about western music (unless you say the music sounds like something you'd hear in Nordstrom's - someone said that about a piano piece (Chopin, I think) and Andrew almost had a stroke). Andrew tries to use a lot of different media to discuss music: besides audio clips, he brings in clips from shows/concerts, movie clips, and he plays the piano. Twice we've also had live performances of what we're studying by other music students. It makes the class more interesting, and the fact that he can play the piano (and he's good at it) means he can break down different elements of music. I'm not really sure where the second review came from. His jokes aren't inappropriate, and his grading is very fair. And Andrew doesn't expect his students to know really technical aspects of music. He might mention some more technical terms and concepts while he's explaining a piece, but it's always as a side note, and never anything he actually expects his students to know for an exam. He does expect you to become familiar with basic technical concepts (major, minor, rhythm, structures of different kinds of orchestral works...), but it is, after all, a music class, and it's only information that you need to get a basic understanding of the pieces you study. All in all, this is probably one of the best classes I've taken so far at Columbia. Andrew's enthusiasm for music is infectious. Music I previously thought was boring I now enjoy listening to, or, at the very least, appreciate. You should definitely do what you can to get in to this class.

Sep 2007

I don't understand how the below person could give him such a good review. For one, I expected Music Hum to be a survey course to introduce us to the masterpieces of Western music. Instead, Andrew expected us to understand the technical aspects of music, even at points trying to instruct us on music theory. I have played an instrument for over eight years and sometimes I didn't even know what this man was talking about! In addition to making inappropriate jokes, he is a unnecessarily difficult grader. I implore you, please stay away from this one.

May 2007

Andrew is the reason I came to Columbia. Obviously, I didn't know he was going to be here, that's not what I mean. But, if you want a young, talented, hysterical, bright, enthusiastic and caring teacher for the Core, pick Andrew. He is simply a fantastic teacher. I didn't know the first thing about classical music a few months ago. Now, I spend my nights listening to Haydn symphonies or dissecting Wagner leitmotivs (for fun!). Andrew is a really nice guy, he learned everyone's name and something about them by the end of the first class. He's the funniest professor I've ever had. (And he's really tall.) Every class he plays the piano for at least a few minutes. This was one of my Columbia favorites. Email Andrew and ask him which section he's teaching and try to get in to it. He's so cool.