Exploring Western Music

Meet Marc McAneny, instructor for the MUS1A Exploring Western Music course in Summer Session II.

Marc’s background:

I’ve been teaching music to college students for over 20 years, including at Northwestern University, the Boston Conservatory, and here at the Brandeis music department. This is the second year I’ll be offering a course through the Brandeis Summer School.

Why he’s passionate about music:

Listening to music is a skill, and this course begins and ends with a single question: what do you listen for when encountering music in any style? We all have habits and tendencies that shape our interaction with music, and acknowledging them is a step to expanding our own musical experience. Exploring Western Music uses the history of western classical music as a way to explore our own hearing processes and our relationships with music in general. The course will offer a historical overview of the general trends in western classical music from the Renaissance through the present, and this becomes the portal through which we consider how we listen and how we might develop our listening skills. The focus on classical music in particular is based in part on its general unfamiliarity for many listeners. Encountering music we haven’t experienced before offers the most direct access to our own listening tendencies. Exploring changing styles of classical music through western European history will also allow a broader consideration of musical style itself and the different challenges to listening they pose.

Why you should take this class:

My hope is that students might take the approach offered in this course and apply it to any musical style, including popular genres. I find that this type of inquiry can keep our passion for music alive and growing by engaging our senses, our imagination, and our curiosity. Exploring Western Music will cover many things, but ultimately, it’s about discovering how and why we listen to music.

Enroll today!

Summer Activities – Ice Cream Truck!

On campus for a summer of learning? Please join us as we welcome an Ice Cream Truck to campus. Students will receive one free ice cream.

The truck will arrive at 3pm to the Fellows Garden. today, June 10!

ice cream

If you’re interested in knowing what other activities are being offered this summer, check out the Summer Activities schedule here.


Intermediate German

If you’re interested in being challenged in your language acquisition pursuits, GER 30A: Intermediate German might be the perfect course for you.
Teaching Innovation Award recipient,  Kathrin Seidl-Gomez, shares some insight into her work, her course, and what your experience in GER 30A could look like this summer. 
Kathrin Seidel Gomez

Instructor background: Native German, I have studied and taught at different US Universities, including Vanderbilt University where I received my PhD in German literature with a thesis on the cultural role of German exiles in Colombia, South America, and the College of William & Mary before joining Brandeis University in 2012 as a full-time faculty member and Director of the German Program.
Brandeis Summer School Involvement:
I am very excited to teach this year for the first time a course at the Brandeis Summer School, which offers students a fast-track towards fulfilling the University’s language requirement as well as to get a head start for taking more advanced language and literature courses.
What makes your course unique?
German 30 is designed based on experiential-learning principles and allows for a far greater immersion into German language and culture during four weeks of intensive studies than any language course during the semester. The student’s exclusive focus on German, twelve contact hours each week, and a small class size that allows for creative group work, daily instructor feedback and detailed responses on written assignments create a stimulating learning environment and augment the long-term retention of the material.
What draws you to this subject area?
A life-long passion for teaching but also and most importantly my first-hand experience of discovering new worlds through proficiency in foreign languages. Ranging from my studies in Germany, Italy and the US, to research I conducted in South America and Spain, the languages I speak came to fundamentally shape and enrich my life more than any other factors (e.g., compared to socio-economic, ethnic or religious belongings).
What do you hope students will learn from your course?
I hope my students will take away an appreciation of German culture, the confidence to engage in conversations with native speakers and the desire to travel and explore German-speaking areas. As an aside: We offer at Brandeis and through our Center for German and European Studies amazing study abroad programs in Germany and Austria, internships in these countries, as well as travel grants and stipends.

GER 30 is offered in Summer Session II, July 11- August 12, 2016. You can register for this course until July 1!

First Day of Summer Classes!

Today is the day we’ve all been looking forward to – the first day of Summer 2016 classes!

Students enrolled in Summer Session I and Extended Session Courses are starting their courses today – meeting instructors, connecting with classmates, and beginning their academic journey for the summer.

We are really looking forward to meeting many of our students and getting to see them excel in the classroom.

If you’re feeling left out, there’s still time to enroll in Summer Session II! Registration for the second session is open until July 1! There are also a few seats left in Summer Session I courses, and time to register late! Don’t miss out! 

Introduction to Macroeconomics

Learn about Andrew Tsai,  instructor for Econ-20A-1 Introduction to Macroeconomics in Summer Session II.

I am a PhD student at Brandeis University.  My research interests are in macroeconomics and finance.

This is my second time teaching this class in the summer.




What makes your course unique?

I try to bring in relevant world news into my course materials.  Last summer I used the Greek debt crisis as an example to illustrate topics and ideas for the course.

What draws you to this subject area?

I’m interested in understanding the impact of policy decisions on our everyday life.

What do you hope students will learn from your course?

This course is mostly about intuition that will help students analyze economics policies.

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