The teaching of music involves highly technical and theoretical elements, but it also concerns philosophical and sociocultural awareness. Professor Eggert has taught in a wide variety of venues, including college, secondary and primary schools, individualized lessons, and ensemble collaborations. The following sampling of Scott’s teaching range demonstrates his unusual mix of technical expertise and thematic cultural understanding in both traditional Western and non-traditional, non-Western canons. Sample syllabi include Just Intonation, Native American Music, and Music Theory for Nonmajors. Scott’s statement of teaching philosophy follows the sample syllabi, and visitors can likewise view a sample lecture/lesson plan and short video of him teaching theory at the University of Georgia. With experience founding a charter school and teaching a wide range of levels in music, Scott uses interactive, participatory elements for students to advance technically as well as intellectually.
To read Scott’s research statement, click here.
Course Objectives: This class will give the student a clear and nuanced understanding of the philosophy and history of Just Intonation (JI) tuning theory, and to acquaint them with the composers and theorists responsible for the JI movement (as well as those working to continue the movement in the present day), that began in the United States in the 20th century with the groundbreaking work of American composer Harry Partch. By the end of this class, students should be able to:
- understand pitch relationships within the context of JI—as ratios, indicating a mathematical relationship to a central pitch, based on the harmonic series.
- discuss the origins of tuning theory, and the theorists responsible for the revival of Pythgoreanism in music in the 20th century.
- listen to music in JI, and describe it analytically and critically.
- differentiate between the styles and works of various JI composers.
To download the full syllabus, click here.
Survey of Native American Music
Course Objectives: The purpose of this class is to acquaint the student with the diverse world of Native American music, showing a line of descent from ancient musical forms to the modern music of a living community. The class shall be divided into three distinct units. The first shall focus on ancient forms and tribe-specific genres of social and ceremonial music (Cherokee social dances, Sun Dance songs, Lakota ceremonial songs). The second unit will be an examination of the intertribal tradition of powwow music, and the dances associated with the various song-forms. The third unit will focus on contemporary Native American musicians and the new hybrid forms emerging from indigenous communities of the present day. The class shall have some interactive elements to it, giving the students the opportunity to experience the communal music-making associated in particular with the powwow tradition, as well as to gain an understanding of this music as a unique cultural expression.
To download the full syllabus, click here.
Music Theory for Nonmajors
Course Objectives: This course is an introduction to music theory (i.e., the grammar and syntax of the musical language) with no prior knowledge or musical experience assumed. Emphasis will be on learning the theoretical aspects of music important to performers and composers. Upon completion of this course, the successful student will be able to:
- Identify visually and write scales, keys, triads, intervals, and chords.
- Notate rhythm correctly, beaming according to the meter.
- Write melodies and simple accompaniments in a given key.
- Analyze simple harmonies and formal structures.
To download the full syllabus click here.
Statement of Teaching Philosophy
Overview: Scott’s statement of teaching philosophy, which can be downloaded below, advances his belief in the necessity for a musician to understand the natural properties and the physiological effect of tone. The harmonic series must be examined in origin and in the laws of nature, through which the twelve tone system can be measured against the inherent rules of tonality. It is important for music students to understand, along with the phenomenon of resonance—the manner in which the vibrations of tone interact with the world around them. Education should train us to think critically as well as assimilate information; therefore we need to encourage experimentation and a questioning spirit among our students. Effective teaching of aural skills includes:
- A good variety of activities and teaching techniques.
- Sensitivity to individual student needs and learning styles.
- Plenty of class time devoted to rhythmic fluency.
- Improvisational exercises to cultivate musical intelligence.
- Participatory learning.
- A focus on skills that will be assets in the “real world” of professional music.
Each of these points is discussed in turn in the longer statement below. The primary goal of a music teacher should be to inspire students to become active seekers, not merely competent professionals. The treasures of musical study are inexhaustible, and can lead to incredible discoveries about the world, people, culture, philosophy, and our inner selves. It is not just a vocation by which musicians earn a living.
Download Professor Eggert’s full teaching philosophy statement here.
Music Theory for Nonmajors, September 2016, University of Georgia. Lesson in rhythm, keyboard fluency, and enharmonic equivalence.