Introduction to Music (mus3)

I often teach MUS 3 as a large lecture course in the regular academic year (400 students), and in a smaller class format during summer (35 students). This course is for non-music majors and does not require any previous experience with music.

Course Description

The goal of this course is to introduce ideas and listening strategies to deepen your relationship with music. Music is everywhere in our society, but more often than not, we experience it through media and contexts that emphasize the visual. This course will heighten your attention to the sonic dimensions of music, and to the rich variety of meanings and functions that are implicated in musical sounds. You will not learn to read music, but we will explore some technical aspects of musical craft as well as broader cultural questions, drawing on numerous examples and some mini-case studies. We will listen to music from a range of traditions, Western and non-Western, ancient and contemporary. Most of the topics we will study will probably be new to you, though some will be common sounds from mass media. Coursework involves weekly reading and listening assignments, in-class iClicker responses, online quizzes of short answer questions, and several assignments in which you will work with digital audio.

Course websites/syllabi

Summer 2015 course website:

Older syllabi:
Spring 2014 course website docs


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