2115: Survey of Music from Antiquity to c. 1750
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These are the laws of the Music
This page has been updated for Fall 2012.
- Please use one form of your name consistently for all work handed in and
all e-mail messages (not "Arthur Paul Snodgrass III" one time and "Boomer"
the next, or Youngsung Kim one time and Charlie Kim the next). I always prefer
first name first unless a specific form (like an opscan form) asks for last
- Sign your email messages with your full name
and email address. In fact it's a good idea to go ahead and set up an automatic
signature that will appear on all your emails. And if you send a message from
someone else's computer, identify yourself very clearly.
- Asian students, you may use either the Asian form <familyname givenname>
or the American form <givenname familyname>, but please use the same
form consistently for all work, and it would be easier for me if you
used the form used by the Registrar for gradesheets so I can find your name
- Please print your name clearly on all work
turned in, do not sign it in an unintelligible scribble.
- Use the same form of your name when you sign up for the on line website, so I will not confuse you with someone else.
Your student number:
- Please give me your full student number, printed clearly, on the Student Information Form
so I can check it against my class roll. If the Registrar assigns you a new
number, it will take effect immediately, as will any name change (for marriage, for example). Memorize your student number, because you'll need it
for every class. There may be changes in the rules for using student numbers
during the semester.
- Please use your full student number on all Opscan forms used for Quizzes,
and double check because if it isn't correct, the computer won't recognize you and
may think you are someone else. Make sure the numbers are bubbled in correctly.
The most common errors are mixing up zero and one.
- Please use only the last
4 digits of your student number (along with your printed
name) on all other work that is turned in.
- If I e-mail the scores of Quizzes to the class, they will be identified
only by the last 4 of your student number, but they will be listed in alphabetical
order. It should not take long to learn how many screens down you need to
go to find your scores. On rare occasions two students will have the same
last 4; contact me to make sure you are checking the right entry. I will also send out individual personalized grade reports from time to time, but my MailMerge does not always work when I want it to.
- Please note: I am quite aware that the Registrar does not want any part
of your student number used for identification. However, the Registrar has
not provided anything to take its place for identifying you as a unique individual,
and the university DOES intend your student number to identify you as a unique
individual. If anyone knows more than I do, I'd be delighted to learn more!
I may experiment with assigning you each a unique Class Number, but I probably
won't because that's the Registrar's job!
- Activate your university e-mail account immediately (it's probably already
active), and give me your e-mail address printed clearly on the Student Information Form.
If you can't do that, e-mail me at John.Howell@vt.edu
and give me your e-mail address no later than Monday of the second week of
the semester. Check the address Tech has assigned to you every day, because emails must be sent through Scholar and that's the addresses that it has.
- Always put " 2115 " (without the quotes) and
nothing else on the "Subject" line so I can find class messages and answer
them as quickly as possible. I will put 2115 and a short description on messages
I send to the class, to help you sort them out. Most days I get well over
100 emails, some of it junk mail. I will answer as quickly as possible, but
may not see your message before a class you are asking about.
- Always include your full name either as part
of your e-mail address or as a signature. If you don't have a signature block
set up for your email, do it now. If I can't identify you, you've flunked
Communication 101! And cute or obscure email addresses can't be identified without having
your full name in them.
- Please send e-mail messages as plain text only,
not as html code, if you have a choice. HTML was not designed as a universal email format, and I'm not interested in getting pictures.
- I prefer to be called "John" if you can manage it. The two years I worked
for Disney convinced me that a first-name basis is desirable. "Mr. Howell"
was my father, and "Dr. Howell" is inaccurate because while I finished
the Ph.D. courses I did not finish the degree. In fact "Dr. Howell"
are my two daughters-in-law, both M.Ds, and my older daughter, who just completed her Ph.D in Math Education.
- You can e-mail questions or problems to me 24 hours a day, but
be aware that I may not be able to read late night, early morning
or last-minute posts until after the class you're asking
- I deliberately do not have posted office hours, which never fit studetts' schedules, but will arrange to meet
with anyone who needs to see me in person at a mutually agreeable time. E-mail
me and we'll work it out. Ninety percent of questions can be dealt with quickly
and completely by email. And no, I do not Tweet, Text, or do Facebook!
- It is always my intention to start class on time and end it on time. I don't
want to waste your time and I don't want to waste mine. Announcements will
always be the first thing in every class, and you're responsible for anything
announced even if you're late to class.
- If you have a personal or family emergency and need to go home, go!
You're excused. (A note from a doctor or other official-type person when you
come back would be nice.) Try to let me know what's happening by e-mail or
voicemail as soon as you can, but don't worry about it until you can. We'll
worry about making up missed work later. I can be very flexible when people have REAL problems.
- If you have to take someone else from the class along for physical or emotional
support, do it! They're excused too.
- This class is taught under the provisions of the University Honor Code and
Honor Court System.
- Cheating, plagiarism, or any other violation of the Honor Code is unacceptable.
That includes the use of PDAs, cellphones, text messaging or computers
during quizzes or exams.
- Violations of the Honor Code will be reported through the Honor System.
- If you are not familiar with the Honor Code, you can find it online at <http://www.vt.edu/honorsystem/UgradHonor.html>.
- Students observing cheating or other Honor Code violiations are responsible
under the Honor Code for reporting those violations. However, first please
speak with the student or students involved and tell them what you
have observed. If you observe a repeat of the violation you should
e-mail me privately. You do not need to identify yourself if you do not wish
to, but should identify the individuals cheating. You may also report violations
directly to the Honor Code office on the 3rd floor of Squires, without informing
me. Look after one another, but don't accept cheating.
- For all students, but especially for students who grew up in other cultures,
there is a link on the 2115 Homepage to a site that explains what is considered
plagiarism and cheating in written work in North American universities. I strongly
recommend that you read it. Ignorance of these definitions of plagiarism will
not be accepted as an excuse for anyone.
- Excused absenses (which allow you to make up
- Personal or family emergencies (supported by a note or other document)
- Official trips by a Music Department ensemble (if I am informed in advance)
- Trips for official University business (if I am informed in advance)
- Job interviews or other professional activities (if I am informed in
- Official trips by University varsity or club sports teams (if I am informed
in advance and receive a memo from your coach)
- Specific religious holidays (if I am informed in advance)
- Unexcused absenses (don't even ask!):
- My ride is leaving early
- I overslept
- I had to study for another class
- My ride is leaving early
- I had to make up a test in another class
- My plane to Cancun is leaving early
- My ride is leaving early
- I didn't know we had a Quiz today
- The cat ate my CDs
- My CDs are on the plane to Cancun with my cat
- Students with disabilities should speak with
me about any special accomodations that might be needed. I will do everything
I can to make this class user-friendly for you. Be sure to contact the Dean
of Students' Office for official recognition of disabilities and special support
- Scores and grades will be e-mailed to the class
in this form if possible, although at present it is not possible (subject to announced changes):
- Column 1: Student numbers (the last 4 digits, but in alphabetical order)
- Column 2: Your running grade as of that moment in time, as a grade percentage
(scale of 0-100%), weighted according to the Grading Option you have chosen.
Please note that everyone starts the semester with a grade of 70%. I'll
- Columns 3 ... n: Your score, as a grade percentage, for the Quiz or
assignment being reported on
- Note that this may change during the semester. You will be informed.
- Note also that last year I developed the ability to send out individualized
score and Estimated Running Grade reports, and I will use those whenever
- Grading Options
- Find the list of Options under Evaluation and Grading on the Syllabus
- Choose the Option that best fits your strengths and schedule
- Your choice is a contract between you, the University, the Department of Music, and
me as your Instructor
- Email your choice to me by the second Monday of the semester, by 11:59:59
- Anyone who does not otherwise inform me will be placed under Option
- You will have one opportunity to change your Option, within one week
after the Unit Quiz 1 is taken. Email me if you want to make a change.
No changes are permitted before or after that.
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