Teaching Statement

 

I believe my mandate as a music teacher is to help my students become better musicians. To this end, my goal in the classroom is to maximize my students’ learning potential. Over the years I have developed many successful strategies to do just this. In my courses, fun and relaxed yet rigorous and challenging, I strive to make students think profoundly and critically about music. I run a tight ship in the classroom, and I make sure to include all students in the learning process. By putting all the compositions and music-theoretical concepts I discuss into a historical context, I expect my students to be able to grasp not only the notes on the page, but also the broader cultural trends that may have led to the creation of those notes. When teaching core classes in music theory and musicianship, I believe it is crucial to strike a balance between the time-honored works of the Western canon and those of more contemporary popular genres, insofar as they often feature similar compositional devices. Therefore, in addition to classical works by composers such as Bach, Mozart, or Beethoven, I often use rock, jazz, blues, or hiphop examples to introduce certain musical techniques: the students enjoy it and willingly learn the material. Also, musicianship plays a prominent role in such classes. Through singing and playing music in a hands-on environment, I believe that students will have a much more enjoyable journey in music theory and, consequently, become better musicians. Finally, I am a firm believer that technology in the classroom, in proper proportions, can help music students immeasurably, especially with ear-training and notational skills. For this reason I continually seek to harness the pedagogical benefits of the latest technological advances in the classroom.

Teaching Experience

 

Spring 2015
Aaron Copland School of Music, Queens College, CUNY. Adjunct Assistant Professor. Taught one course, MUS 779, “Musical Analysis for Performance,” to MM students.

2010-present
City University of New York Graduate Center. Assistant Professor of Music Theory. Duties/services include: advising doctoral dissertations as primary or secondary advisor; conducting Independent Studies; sitting on comprehensive-exam juries; teaching seminars; performing in faculty recitals; interviewing prospective Ph.D. candidates in Music Theory; adjudicating DMA degree recitals.

Courses Taught at the Graduate Center:
1. Music 741, Introduction to the Analysis of Post-Tonal Music.

2009-present
Hunter College CUNY, New York, New York. Assistant Professor of Music Theory. Duties/services include: teaching core music-theory classes; coordinating the Music-Theory Fundamentals track (which runs roughly six sections per semester); ordering and taking decisions on core music-theory textbooks; serving on departmental and college-wide committees; developing the music-theory curriculum; taking minutes of departmental meetings as secretary; advising masters theses as primary or secondary advisor; teaching honors seminars; performing on faculty recitals; interviewing prospective MA candidates in Music Theory; adjudicating degree recitals; adjudicating end-of-semester juries; coordinating local conferences; bringing in outside artists to the Hunter community.

Courses Taught at Hunter College:
1. MUS 742, Russian Opera (Spring 2017).
2. MUS 725, Advanced Music Theory 2.
3. MUSHL 361, Rap Music in Hip-Hop Culture (Macaulay Honors Class).
4. MUSTH 331, Musicianship 4.
5. MUSTH 321, Music Theory 4.
6. MUSTH 330, Musicianship 3.
7. MUSTH 320, Music Theory 3.
8. MUSTH 231, Musicianship 2.
9. MUSTH 221, Music Theory 2.
10. MUSTH 230, Musicianship 1.
11. MUSTH 220, Music Theory 1.
12. MUSTH 101, Music Theory Fundamentals (course coordinator).

2007-2009
North Central College, Naperville, Illinois. Assistant Professor of Music. Duties/services include: overseeing and running the music-technology lab; student advising; restructuring of theory and aural-skills curriculum; taking part in overall music department program review; taking minutes at music-department meetings as secretary; and playing on faculty recitals.

Music Technology and Teaching: Planned, coordinated, and setup an 11-station new Music Mac Lab for the new Fine Arts Center at North Central College. One station is setup as an administrator station. Hardware includes iMac computers, M-Audio Keyboard Controllers (10 25-key and 1 88-key), Yamaha headphones and microphones, and laser printer. Software includes Sibelius, Finale, Auralia, Practica Musica, Microsoft Office, Logic Studio, and Pro Tools, among others.

Courses Taught at North Central College:
1. Music 343, Advanced Musicianship (aural skills for majors).
2. Music 342, Arranging and Orchestration (for majors).
3. Music 341, Advanced Music Theory (for majors).
4. Music 251, Music Literature (music history for majors).
5. Music 209, Intermediate Musicianship II (aural skills for majors).
6. Music 208, Intermediate Musicianship I (aural skills for majors).
7. Music 202, Intermediate Music Theory II (for majors).
8. Music 201, Intermediate Music Theory I (for majors).
9. Music 156, Music in Our World (world music for nonmajors).
10. Music 150, Listening to Music (music appreciation for nonmajors).
11. Music 109, Basic Musicianship II (aural skills for majors).
12. Music 108, Basic Musicianship I (aural skills for majors).

2002-2007
University of Tennessee School of Music, Knoxville, Tennessee. Assistant Professor. Duties/services include: senior and graduate-student thesis supervision; student advising; teaching independent studies; sitting on comprehensive-exam juries; serving on the School of Music curriculum committee; overseeing research seminars and colloquia; playing on faculty recitals; coaching chamber music and leading cello sectionals; and restructuring of theory and aural skills curriculum.

Courses Taught at the University of Tennessee:
1. Music 520, Analytical Techniques (for grad theory/composition majors).
2. Music 420, Orchestration (for grad/undergrad composition majors).
3. Music 320, Instrumentation (for undergrad music majors).
4. Music 220, Theory IV (20th Century, for majors).
5. Music 210, Theory III (19th Century, for majors).
6. Music 120, Theory II (18th-19th Century, for majors).
7. Music 110, Theory I (First semester Theory for music majors).

1996-1999
Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut. Part-time Acting Instructor at Yale College.

Courses Taught at Yale University:
1. Music Theory II (Second semester theory for music majors).
2. Music Theory I (First semester theory for music majors).
3. Aural Skills II (Second semester ear training for music majors).
4. Aural Skills I (First semester ear training for music majors).
4. Music 145, “Jazz, America’s Music” (for nonmajors).
5. Music 110, “Introduction to the Elements of Music” (for nonmajors).

1996-1999
Fairfield University, Fairfield, Connecticut. Instructor of Cello and Chamber Music; principal cello, Fairfield University Symphony Orchestra.