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. 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 music theory and musicianship, I believe it is crucial to strike a balance among many various genres and styles, insofar as all feature elements of music–pitch, rhythm, scale, meter, timbre, embodiment, gesture, dance, ritual, improvisation, among others–that are crucial to the study of music theory. Therefore, in addition to classical works I use rock, jazz, blues, or hiphop examples to introduce certain musical techniques: the students enjoy it and willingly learn the material. I firmly believe in challenging music theory’s historic whiteness and maleness, and I therefore strive to include composers, performers, and theorists who are not both white and male, though I hasten to add that I most certainly include musical figures who were, in fact, white men as well, all of which creates a rich and varied musical backdrop for my classes. Also, musicianship plays a prominent role in these classes. Through singing and playing music in a hands-on environment, I believe that students 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

2010-present
The Graduate Center, City University of New York. Duties/services include: advising doctoral dissertations; conducting Independent Studies; sitting on comprehensive-exam juries; teaching doctoral seminars; performing in faculty recitals; interviewing prospective PhD candidates in Music Theory; serving on the Executive Committee of the PhD/DMA in Music programs; 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. Duties/services include: Serving as Director of Graduate Studies; serving on the governing body for music, the Personnel and Budget Committee; teaching core music-theory classes; coordinating the Music-Theory Fundamentals track (which runs roughly six sections per semester); serving on departmental and college-wide committees; developing the music-theory curriculum; 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.
2. MUS 725, Advanced Music Theory.
3. MUS 779, Musical Analysis for Performance (at Queens College).
4. MUSHL 361, Rap Music in Hip-Hop Culture (Macaulay Honors Class).
5. MUSTH 331, Musicianship 4.
6. MUSTH 321, Music Theory 4.
7. MUSTH 330, Musicianship 3.
8. MUSTH 320, Music Theory 3.
9. MUSTH 231, Musicianship 2.
10. MUSTH 221, Music Theory 2.
11. MUSTH 230, Musicianship 1.
12. MUSTH 220, Music Theory 1.
13. MUSTH 101, Music Theory Fundamentals (also course coordinator).

2007-2009
North Central College, Naperville, Illinois. 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. 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).