OSU Course Info
Ohio State University
School of Music

Music 829C: Research Approaches in Systematic Musicology

Course Description

Course Description:

This course teaches students how to do systematic research in music. The principal goal is to develop the students' independence, confidence, and appropriate skepticism in pursuing research activities.

The course material will trace two parallel branches: theoretical and practical. The theoretical branch will survey classic writings pertaining to the philosophy of knowledge, including philosophical works on empiricism as well as post-modernist and anti-foundationalist critiques of science. The practical branch will emphasize practical research skills in systematic music scholarship -- including experimental, correlational, and field methods.

Much of the course will involve identifying the many things that can go wrong in research (both conceptual and practical), and providing tips for recognizing such problems and avoiding them.

The course will emphasize the linkage between practical research procedures and philosophical sophistication in interpreting the process and results of research.


The course objectives are pursued through weekly readings, seminar discussions, student presentations and assignments.


The course has no formal pre-requisites. Graduate standing is required.

Meeting Times:

This course is scheduled for the Spring Quarter of 2000. Class times have yet to be arranged. Classes are held on the Ohio State University Campus in Columbus, Ohio.

Registration Number:

The registration call number for the Spring 2000 offering of this course is 18539-6.


The course content is built around four core readings:

Alan F. Chalmers, What is This Thing Called Science? St. Lucia, Australia: University of Queensland Press, 3rd edition, 1999 (266 pages) ISBN: 0-87220-452-9. [cost ~$12.95]

Paul C. Cozby, Methods in Behavioral Research. Mountain View, CA: Mayfield Publishing Co. 6th edition, 1996 (302 pages) ISBN: 1-559346590. [cost ~$39.95]

David Huron Methodology at the Intersection of the Humanities and Sciences From the 1999 Bloch Lectures, University of California, Berkeley (38 pages). [cost ~$3.80]

Joseph Natoli, A Primer to Postmodernity. Oxford: Blackwell Publishers Ltd., 1997 (209 pages) ISBN: 1-57718-060-7 (hardcover) or 1-57718-061-5 (softcover). [cost ~$22.95]

Supplementary reserve readings will be made available through the Music/Dance Library.


The workload for Music 829C entails three hours of seminar participation each week, plus approximately ten hours of reading (roughly 80 pages) per week, as well as one hour of lab/assignment activities per week.

Method of Evaluation:

The final course grade will be based on the following:

Class participation and presentation30%
Assignments (5)50%


Dr. David Huron
Mershon Auditorium, Room 502
Telephone: 688-4753 (Wk.)
E-mail: hüron.1@osü.edü [Please ignore the umlauts; they are present to foil web crawlers.]

Meeting with the Instructor:

Students are encouraged to arrange to discuss any aspect of their course work. No appointments are necessary, however meeting times can be assured by telephoning Prof. Huron to make an appointment. If you are unable to reach the instructor by telephone, remember to leave a message giving your name and telephone number.

This document is available at http://dactyl.som.ohio-state.edu/Music829C/descript.C.html