MUSIC 2116: SURVEY OF MUSIC FROM c. 1750 TO c. 2010
CRN #15012--Spring Semester 2012--Prof. John R. Howell


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WRITING ASSIGNMENTS

This page has been updated for Spring, 2012.

Contents:

 


General Information: Every student is required to attend a minimum of one concert that includes classical ("art") music and to turn in a review of that concert. Note carefully the system of Due Dates for these reviews (below). This assignment is worth up to 10% of your final grade, or one full letter grade. Reviews turned in by the "Very Early" or "Early" deadlines will earn extra credit bonuses. Students who choose Grading Option 3 are required to turn in two additional written assignments. These may be one or two additional concert reviews (subject to the same deadlines and capable of earning the same extra credit bonuses). Or, they may be Research Papers on one or two of the specific subjects given below, which have very specific Due Dates. Please note that these subjects are keyed to what is being covered in the readings and lectures, and that there are different and very specific deadlines for each of these papers (and no extra credit opportunities).

Papers whose writing falls below acceptable standards will be returned without being graded and the student referred to the university's Writing Center for help with that paper. No penalty will be assessed for this, and the paper should be turned in again for grading after working with the Writing Center.

All writing assignments should be done individually. Papers which appear to be identical to other papers will be turned in to the Honor System as possible plagiarism. All material that is taken from print, web, or other sources must be acknowledged using quotation marks and/or parenthetical citations, and a list of references provided. No other bibliography is required except for Research Papers. When extensive borrowed material is used, and this includes program notes from the individual concerts, the student is expected to also provide analysis putting the quoted material into context and comparing or constrasting as may be appropriate. Papers with all borrowed and no original material will not be acceptable and will be considered plagiarism.


Pre-Review Assignment: During the first 2 weeks of class, access professional concert reviews in the Arts or Entertainment section of the Sunday edition or Web edition of a major newspaper like the New York Times, Washington Post, Chicago Tribune or Los Angeles Times in the Library or on the Internet to get an idea of what can be done in a good review. A 2-paragraph report summarizing such a review and giving your ideas on what a good review should be like is due on Monday, January 30, and must be submitted as an e-mail attachment using Word or another program the can be opened in Word. This report will not be graded, but will earn an automatic 2% extra credit on your final grade when it is turned in on time and follows these instructions. Late submissions will not be accepted.


Concert Reviews: One Concert Review is required for everyone. Additional Concert Reviews will be accepted from students on Grading Option 3 only. They should be written as if for publication. Your "audience" is not me, but the general reading public. Your "voice" is a person who attends concerts for pleasure. Spelling, grammar and punctuation count!

Early Submission: Note that extra credit points are given for Reviews submitted "very early" (2 weeks before your Due Date) or "early" (1 week before your Due Date). See below for details.

Format: Reviews must be turned in as an email attachment so I will have an electronic copy. They should be formatted to be printed out, double-spaced (not 1 1/2 spaced), with a 1-inch margin on the sides, top and bottom. Use conventional type faces and sizes (12-point Times, for example). Do not format your review as if it actually were in a newspaper. Treat it as the copy you would turn in for editing and publication. Unless there are problems, everything will be done electronically rather than on paper. Staple the pages together in the upper-left corner if you need to turn in paper copies. (Do not use binders.) Put a 4-line heading with your name, the last 4 of your student number, MUSIC 2116, and the date you turn it in at the top of the first page. Invent a newspaper-type headline as a title. Place a running header on the following pages with your last name and the page number (Howell/14). Title pages and bibliographies are not appropriate, except as noted above for Research Papers. Turn in a copy of the program for the event in class, with your name on it. If there was no program, turn in a note of explanation.) IMPORTANT: If your computer is set to print to A4 paper, please change it to print to U.S. letter size.)

E-Mail Submission: For e-mail submission transmit your file as an attachment to an e-mail message. (E-mail itself will not always transmit formating or special characters, including accent marks and italics.) For email attachments use a standard word processing file like Microsoft Word or WordPerfect. Some file formats cannot be opened, and may even crash the instructor's computer. Because of the prevalence of viruses, a file that does not show a standard word processing icon will not be opened and will not be read or graded. In case of doubt, save your file in RTF format before sending. ALWAYS include your last name as part of the filename, and ALWAYS include a heading including your full name in the body of the paper itself.

Identifying your work: When you save your file, include your last name in the filename. Always include your full name in the email to which your file is attached. And always include the required heading with your full name in the body of the text. Sounds simple, but you'd be surprised how many people are clueless!

Length: These should not be long papers! A newspaper or magazine has a limited amount of space, and successful writers say quite a lot in a short review. If your review is actually complete in one page (250 words), that's enough. About 2 pages (500 words) should be average, and 3 pages (750 words) the maximum. But be sure to mention all the music played and to give your evaluation of it, even if it is negative.

Specifics:

Required Review: Must be of a full-length opera, recital, or concert that includes classical ("art") music or jazz, by a large or small ensemble or a soloist. For students on Grading Option 3, note that this is a required assignment, and if it is not submitted by deadline none of the other writing assignments will be graded or counted.

Additional Review(s): May be as above or may be of any concert (or full evening of entertainment, but not a fraternity dance) in any musical style, including but not limited to Broadway musical, rock, folk, ethnic, etc.

Deadlines: The specific Due Date you sign up for, or that is randomly assigned to you. You are responsible for knowing and keeping track of your own Due Date.

Grading: Up to 100% each, plus a 15% bonus for " very early" or a 10% bonus for "early" submission. After being weighted, the required review counts as up to 10% of your final grade (one full letter grade) and the additional two papers count 5% of your final grade each for people on Option 3.

 

Due Dates:


•This is a system that is designed to give you more choice in shaping your semester's work, and to give me and my grader time throughout the semester to score your papers and return them to you.


•During the first week of class there will be signup sheets available next to my office (157 Squires) where you can choose the due date for your Concert Review. Only 18 names will be accepted for each due date. This gives first choice to students who are attending class from the first day. Any "extra" names beyond 18 on each sheet will be randomly assigned to other dates, and anyone who does not sign up will also be randomly assigned.


• The last opportunity to sign up will be Wednesday, January 25 at 5:00 p.m. After that, I will assign due dates randomly.


•Papers will always be due on a Tuesday, emailed as an attachment and received before 11:59:59 p.m. on the Due Date.


•The first due date is Tuesday, February 21, approximately a month after school starts. The final due date is Tuesday, April 17.

If you choose Grading Option 3, sign up for 3 separate Due Dates; otherwise all 3 written assignments will be due on the same date!


•Please read the Evaluation section on the Course Syllabus page. You will need to choose one of the three Grading Options and let me know by email by 11:59:59 on Wednesday, January 25.


•Extra Credit is available for turning in papers early: an automatic 10% bonus for one week early, a 15% bonus for two weeks early.


•A 10% penalty will be assessed for turning in papers from one minute to one week late. After one week a paper will not be accepted and you will lose 10% of your Final Grade (most of a full letter grade), not 10% of your Paper score.


Research Essays: Students on Grading Option 3 may select one or two of the following four topics and submit research essays of between 500 and 750 words rather than two additional reviews. The choice is entirely up to you, but a total of three written assignments must be turned in. The topics and deadlines are keyed to the material being covered in class. The purpose is to increase the student's understanding of the societies in which this music is found. The relationship between music and the subject of each essay must be well covered; I am not looking for generic essays that can be downloaded from Net sources!

Please note that these deadlines are the same as the Due Dates for Concert Reviews, and that these papers do carry extra credit for early submission.
Topic 1: Describe late 18th century European society, specifically including the place of music in that society and the influences of the Enlightenment.

Topic 2: Describe European Romanticism during the first half of the 19th century, comparing the musical concepts with those of the poets and novelists of the time.

Topic 3: Describe the influences of Nationalism on music in the last half of the 19th century and the early years of the 20th, including both the major musical influences and the political movements of the time.

Topic 4: Compare and contrast the musical philosophies of the early 20th century 12-tone composers, represented by Schönberg, and Neo-Classical composers, represented by Stravinsky and Hindemith.

Evaluation and Grading of all written work:

Content

40%

Writing Style

20%

Spelling

10%

Punctuation

10%

Grammar

10%

Format

10%

Please note that this is designed to protect the student. No more than 10 errors will be penalized for spelling, punctuation, grammar or format. Note also that errors in English for ESL students are not penalized, although suggestions will often be given.


Some Common Problems (My pet peeves; you have been warned!)


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