professor
Kristy Riggs

This professor has earned a CULPA gold nugget

Apr 2014

I loved coming to this class. I learned a lot, and the work was completely manageable. She really tries to engage her students in class. She even had the class learn some dances that would go with the music being discussed. The tests are easy to study for because she gives out detailed study guides. Still, the memorization and listening involved for studying can take a long time. So, start studying more than a few hours before a test. Her grading is pretty fair although I think her comments on essays could be more thorough.

Jun 2013

You can tell Prof. Riggs cares that her students learn and think about music. I didn't know much about this kind of music before taking this class but I feel like I learned a lot. She made the class interesting by talking about the music canon and women composers. I also liked when she played her flute or when we had musicians come to class. I had to study a lot for the exams but they were straightforward and she sticks to the study guide. Some of the music wasn't my favorite, for example, I didn't like minimalism. But I still found it interesting and it made me think about listening to music in new ways. I would recommend this class.

Jun 2013

Professor Riggs' course was one of the best I have had the privilege to take during my Columbia career. I even took the second semester just because I couldn't get enough of her. She is a tremendous professor, and her passion for the subject is absolutely evident in her teaching style. Don't be fooled, this is no easy class. I had to work hard, especially before exams. The course goes through all of music history, from madrigals to plainchants, symphonies to quintets, jazz standard to minimalist compositions. Professor Riggs produces a thorough review sheet before each exam. The review indicates the 20+ pieces to be memorized and learnt and the 40+ terms one must study. The first section of the exam was a listening examination. Professor Riggs would play a section of a piece we had learnt, and we would write down the name, date, composer, and genre. The second section was an unseen listening, we would have to guess at the composer, year and genre, based on what we already knew of the composers works. The body of the exam was defining terms, followed by matching the composers with their personal musical concepts or ideas, and finally a fill in the blank section. If you study, there is no reason you should do poorly. During the semester there are three papers. One paper was a concert review, another had us listen to two different recordings of a piece and compare them, and the last paper was a review of a concert and lecture we received from the composer afterwards. Professor Riggs, is by no means an easy grader. For those reviewers below who complains that she takes off points here and there for minuscule details in your papers, I apologize, but your in college...edit your papers! I encourage all to take this course. I am now able to turn on the radio to WQXR and tell you exactly what year the piece was composed, and most of the time who the composer was! Kristy made music history interesting and painless. Yes, I worked hard, but I got so much out of the course.

Jun 2013

I really enjoyed this class. Kristy tends to get very excited about talking about music and composers and you can tell she is passionate about this stuff. I learned a lot and appreciated that she tried to make class interesting and varied. For example, she had everyone in the class dance when we were talking about ballet and we had lots of guest performers. If you want a really easy class or you don't want to learn about classical music, then this isn't the class for you. But if you are interested in learning and willing to put in some effort, this is a great class to take.

Jun 2013

Kristy is great! I took Intro to Music I in the fall and enjoyed it so much I took the second semester in the spring. She is very energetic and excited about music, it was hard not to get excited about the music too. She also tries to make the material relevant by bringing in guest musicians, showing videos, news articles, composer interviews. She is always sending announcements about concerts and links to relevant articles and videos about topics from class. Work load consists of readings and listening assignments and there are 3 written assignments throughout the semester. In the first semester we had a debate, concert review, recording review and in the spring we had a recording review and 2 concert reviews, 1 of our choice and the other of a concert at Miller Theater where we got to meet the composer. There is a midterm and final. You definitely have to study for them but she gives a really helpful study guide with all the terms and music. You can also do an extra credit assignment by attending another concert and writing a short summary of it. I learned so much about music and composers and I'm still listening to some of the music on my ipod.

May 2013

Kristy was horrible. Course reminded me of high-school. She would take down essay points for using "it's" instead of "it is". She was nervous and shaking during class, not really accesible afterwords. It was an awkward experience altogether. I wish school will not save money by letting inexperienced sub-par junior professors and graduate students learn to teach over our backs. In Riggs' case – even that will not help. Again, reminded me of my (bad) public high-school. Didn't learn anything of value.

May 2013

This class is great for students who enjoy discussing their thoughts and opinions, people who like classical music and enjoy memorizing information. However, if you just need to fulfill your visualizing arts, I suggest you do not take this class. It is very boring if you do not enjoy classical music and tedious when trying to learn the music for the midterm and the final. She is a lovely teacher and does always have a smile on her face, however she does have favorites and it is very clear who she likes and who she doesn't like. Again, it is a great class if you enjoy the material. For me, I did not enjoy this class. Riggs is very nice and I did enjoy her as a professor.

May 2013

Professor Riggs is excited about the material she is teaching, encourages participation, and is interested in what her students have to say. She makes you feel like your opinion is important. And she comes to class extremely well prepared. Throughout the semester she sticks to the syllabus, and hands back tests and assignments within a reasonable amount of time. During the semester we had numerous visits from musicians/bands, which was super fun! They were great, and really drove home what we learned about in class. Professor Riggs also often plays different video clips or pieces of music or taped interviews to reach out to visual learners, auditory learners etc. You will learn about the development of music styles. I've learned to see music on a timeline, as it progresses through different time periods. Very all-encompassing. The class is worth taking! Highly recommended! You will love Professor Riggs!

Jul 2010

Itook a lot of music in HS so I thought I already new a lot about music (more than a lot of music majors I know), but Kristy really challenged me to learn a lot! She was totally into the material, kept things moving, and brought a lot of energy. She would ask a lot of questions in class and expect us to do the readings before class, but this wasn't a problem if you kept up. What I really liked was how she tried to bring in current events or make it relevant, even when the topic was 200 yrs old. I figured I was going to get an easy A since I studied music, but I had to work for it. She really wanted all of us to learn, and she was already ready to answer any questions we had. Her tests weren't too hard as long as you studied all of the material on the study guides that she gave. I liked that she didn't make us guess about what was on the exam, because we covered so much material that would have been impossible. She was very fair in her grading too. She had a ton of guest players come to the classes and play or sing examples of the music that we were studying that day. All in all, Kristy was a great professor - funny, prepared, energetic, fair - Take this class with her if you can!

Jul 2010

I really don't know what the first reviewer (from June 23, 2010) was talking about! I loved Kristy as a prof. She came to class very well-prepared, with notes that she seemed to know by heart because she barely needed them when she gave the lectures. She brought in a lot of guest performers for each period of music that we studied and found interesting youtube videos with interviews with composers. the one requirement in the class to attend an opera (La traviata) was awesome! The tickets were cheap ($10) and the opera was great. I had never been to the MET before, but Kristy really prepared us well for the experience and brought out some interesting details that I would not have noticed. She even arranged a backstage tour of the MET for students. I thought that the workload for the class was fair, and she gave us review study guides before the midterm and final so that we knew the basics of what would be on the exams, but it was up to us to know a lot of material. Kristy really cared about the students, you could tell because she tried to get lots of people involved in the class discussions and she was really passionate about classical music. She even played the flute in class several times to explain a concept. I used to email her a lot with questions and she always got back to me within an hour, which is more than I can say for a lot of CU professors. Overall, I really liked her class and I think you will too!

Jul 2010

I totally disagree with the first reviewer, Kristy was one of the best professors I have had at CU in ANY subject! She was energetic, extremely knowledgeable about the subject matter, and managed to make classical music fun and interesting. We had multiple guest performances in-class, which really made the material come alive and Kristy worked very hard to keep everyone in the class alert and involved by asking many thought-provoking questions throughout each session. She also would incorporate video and music clips into each class. I may not have liked medieval music, but she managed to make even masses and chants come alive! On top of being an engaging lecturer, she went above and beyond the call of duty by giving us thorough study guides for both exams, so that we could adequately prepare for the tests. What more can you ask for in a professor? She was always conscientious about returning emails quickly or meeting with you if requested. You will need to work hard in her class, but with the comprehensive study guides that she provided you can do very well. Anyone at CU would be lucky to take a class with her!

Jul 2010

I couldn't disagree more with the review above. Kristy truly cares deeply about making this class interesting and relevant. She brings in a lot of outside performers and guests to perform live music and talk about the pieces. She also incorporates relevant video clips of films and interviews of composers. Her exams are fair and the course load is pretty reasonable, 2 concert reviews, a midterm, final in addition to class readings and listening assignments. SHe also gives a study guide that was extremely helpful for the exams. It is obvious that Kristy loves the music she is teaching about, especially the nineteenth century, and really wants everyone in the class to learn something too. I highly recommend her class for Music Hum.

Jun 2010

Worthless. Kristy could not have cared less about this class. There was, in fact, one class in which she stated some information (covered in the reading) that was incorrect. When corrected, her response was something along the lines of "Oh. Really? OK." The most emotion she ever showed in class was prompted by malfunctioning A/V equipment. Our section was, admittedly, pretty pathetic in terms of student interest; however, I think the fact that the final only included material covered after the midterm demonstrates that there is clearly something wrong with how Kristy conducts the class. Avoid at all costs unless you're a senior jock and you think you may actually care less than her.