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PSY 250 – Music, Mind and Message

2017 – S1 Day

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff
Bill Thompson
Lecturer
Patrick O'Grady
Contact via patrick.ogrady@mq.edu.au
Credit points Credit points
3
Prerequisites Prerequisites
24cp at 100 level or above
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description
The music industry is among the largest worldwide, and music is a pervasive part of our lives. We turn on music while driving, we listen to music at parties, bars and restaurants. We dance to music, shop to music, sing in the shower, and attend concerts. Yet the psychological and social significance of this aspect of our lives is not widely understood. The goal of this unit is to expose students to the psychological and semiotic dimensions of music in everyday experience. The unit examines current psychological research on music, and explores the social significance of music using a semiotic approach. By the end of the unit, students have an understanding of the cognitive and emotional implications of music, and have the semiotic skills to critically analyse the layers of significance associated with a range of musical genres, from hip-hop and heavy metal, to opera and chamber music.

Important Academic Dates

Information about important academic dates including deadlines for withdrawing from units are available at http://students.mq.edu.au/student_admin/enrolmentguide/academicdates/

Learning Outcomes

  1. Develop understanding of how humans think, feel and communicate with each other
  2. Understanding of music as a multimodal communicative (semiotic) practice
  3. Understanding of human capacities of perception, memory, affect, mutual understanding and co-operation, which underpin musical expression and appreciation
  4. Have a general understanding of how music from different cultures and different historical periods has varied, and how this variation forms part of the changing cultural and psychological context of human societies
  5. Be able to use key concepts from linguistics and psychology to describe different kinds of music in terms of the symbolic resources that are drawn on to achieve each piece/song’s purpose as a communicative event
  6. For text-based music, explain how key features of the language (in lyrics) reflect or resonate with – or sometimes set up oppositions with – key features of the music itself

Assessment Tasks

Name Weighting Due
Early low risk test 20% 23/03/2017
Group project 30% TBA
Written assignment 10% TBA
Final exam 40% Exam period

Early low risk test

Due: 23/03/2017
Weighting: 20%

The early low-risk test is a 45-minute multiple-choice examination that will be held on Dec 14. The test assesses your understanding of the first three lecture topics and reading materials, providing a low-risk means of evaluating your potential early in the course.


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Develop understanding of how humans think, feel and communicate with each other
  • Understanding of human capacities of perception, memory, affect, mutual understanding and co-operation, which underpin musical expression and appreciation
  • Have a general understanding of how music from different cultures and different historical periods has varied, and how this variation forms part of the changing cultural and psychological context of human societies
  • Be able to use key concepts from linguistics and psychology to describe different kinds of music in terms of the symbolic resources that are drawn on to achieve each piece/song’s purpose as a communicative event

Group project

Due: TBA
Weighting: 30%

The Group Audio-Visual Project provides students with an opportunity to apply skills and knowledge they have gained in the unit in a creative group task. Each student is assigned a particular role within the group and is marked for their contribution in that role. The project is due in the last tutorial session. If there is a problem with your group that may affect your project, it is your responsibility to report the problem in writing to the tutor as soon as you are aware of the issue, and before the due date.


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Develop understanding of how humans think, feel and communicate with each other
  • Understanding of music as a multimodal communicative (semiotic) practice
  • Have a general understanding of how music from different cultures and different historical periods has varied, and how this variation forms part of the changing cultural and psychological context of human societies
  • Be able to use key concepts from linguistics and psychology to describe different kinds of music in terms of the symbolic resources that are drawn on to achieve each piece/song’s purpose as a communicative event
  • For text-based music, explain how key features of the language (in lyrics) reflect or resonate with – or sometimes set up oppositions with – key features of the music itself

Written assignment

Due: TBA
Weighting: 10%

This 1000 word assessment task provides students with the opportunity to reflect on their group project, to identify strengths and weakness of group members. Although the audio-visual project is completed in groups, the write up must be your own individual work. The final completed write-up is due at the final tutorial (or as indicated by the tutor) but you are expected to make some contributions to the write-up each week.


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Develop understanding of how humans think, feel and communicate with each other
  • Understanding of music as a multimodal communicative (semiotic) practice
  • Have a general understanding of how music from different cultures and different historical periods has varied, and how this variation forms part of the changing cultural and psychological context of human societies
  • Be able to use key concepts from linguistics and psychology to describe different kinds of music in terms of the symbolic resources that are drawn on to achieve each piece/song’s purpose as a communicative event
  • For text-based music, explain how key features of the language (in lyrics) reflect or resonate with – or sometimes set up oppositions with – key features of the music itself

Final exam

Due: Exam period
Weighting: 40%

This exam will consist of multiple choice and short answer questions and will cover the course content (lectures and readings) for lectures 4-13. It will not cover material covered in the early low-risk test.


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Develop understanding of how humans think, feel and communicate with each other
  • Understanding of human capacities of perception, memory, affect, mutual understanding and co-operation, which underpin musical expression and appreciation
  • Have a general understanding of how music from different cultures and different historical periods has varied, and how this variation forms part of the changing cultural and psychological context of human societies
  • Be able to use key concepts from linguistics and psychology to describe different kinds of music in terms of the symbolic resources that are drawn on to achieve each piece/song’s purpose as a communicative event

Delivery and Resources

Weekly lectures recorded by iLearn. 

Tutorials involve specialized equipment and software that is already in place in the tutorial room, Y3A 223.

Policies and Procedures

Macquarie University policies and procedures are accessible from Policy Central. Students should be aware of the following policies in particular with regard to Learning and Teaching:

Academic Honesty Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/academic_honesty/policy.html

Assessment Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/assessment/policy_2016.html

Grade Appeal Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/gradeappeal/policy.html

Complaint Management Procedure for Students and Members of the Public http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/complaint_management/procedure.html​

Disruption to Studies Policy http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/disruption_studies/policy.html The Disruption to Studies Policy is effective from March 3 2014 and replaces the Special Consideration Policy.

In addition, a number of other policies can be found in the Learning and Teaching Category of Policy Central.

Student Code of Conduct

Macquarie University students have a responsibility to be familiar with the Student Code of Conduct: https://students.mq.edu.au/support/student_conduct/

Results

Results shown in iLearn, or released directly by your Unit Convenor, are not confirmed as they are subject to final approval by the University. Once approved, final results will be sent to your student email address and will be made available in eStudent. For more information visit ask.mq.edu.au.

Student Support

Macquarie University provides a range of support services for students. For details, visit http://students.mq.edu.au/support/

Learning Skills

Learning Skills (mq.edu.au/learningskills) provides academic writing resources and study strategies to improve your marks and take control of your study.

Student Enquiry Service

For all student enquiries, visit Student Connect at ask.mq.edu.au

Equity Support

Students with a disability are encouraged to contact the Disability Service who can provide appropriate help with any issues that arise during their studies.

IT Help

For help with University computer systems and technology, visit http://www.mq.edu.au/about_us/offices_and_units/information_technology/help/

When using the University's IT, you must adhere to the Acceptable Use of IT Resources Policy. The policy applies to all who connect to the MQ network including students.

Graduate Capabilities

Discipline Specific Knowledge and Skills

Our graduates will take with them the intellectual development, depth and breadth of knowledge, scholarly understanding, and specific subject content in their chosen fields to make them competent and confident in their subject or profession. They will be able to demonstrate, where relevant, professional technical competence and meet professional standards. They will be able to articulate the structure of knowledge of their discipline, be able to adapt discipline-specific knowledge to novel situations, and be able to contribute from their discipline to inter-disciplinary solutions to problems.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Understanding of human capacities of perception, memory, affect, mutual understanding and co-operation, which underpin musical expression and appreciation
  • Have a general understanding of how music from different cultures and different historical periods has varied, and how this variation forms part of the changing cultural and psychological context of human societies
  • Be able to use key concepts from linguistics and psychology to describe different kinds of music in terms of the symbolic resources that are drawn on to achieve each piece/song’s purpose as a communicative event
  • For text-based music, explain how key features of the language (in lyrics) reflect or resonate with – or sometimes set up oppositions with – key features of the music itself

Assessment tasks

  • Early low risk test
  • Final exam

Critical, Analytical and Integrative Thinking

We want our graduates to be capable of reasoning, questioning and analysing, and to integrate and synthesise learning and knowledge from a range of sources and environments; to be able to critique constraints, assumptions and limitations; to be able to think independently and systemically in relation to scholarly activity, in the workplace, and in the world. We want them to have a level of scientific and information technology literacy.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Develop understanding of how humans think, feel and communicate with each other
  • Understanding of music as a multimodal communicative (semiotic) practice
  • Understanding of human capacities of perception, memory, affect, mutual understanding and co-operation, which underpin musical expression and appreciation
  • Have a general understanding of how music from different cultures and different historical periods has varied, and how this variation forms part of the changing cultural and psychological context of human societies
  • Be able to use key concepts from linguistics and psychology to describe different kinds of music in terms of the symbolic resources that are drawn on to achieve each piece/song’s purpose as a communicative event

Assessment tasks

  • Early low risk test
  • Group project
  • Written assignment
  • Final exam

Problem Solving and Research Capability

Our graduates should be capable of researching; of analysing, and interpreting and assessing data and information in various forms; of drawing connections across fields of knowledge; and they should be able to relate their knowledge to complex situations at work or in the world, in order to diagnose and solve problems. We want them to have the confidence to take the initiative in doing so, within an awareness of their own limitations.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Understanding of human capacities of perception, memory, affect, mutual understanding and co-operation, which underpin musical expression and appreciation
  • For text-based music, explain how key features of the language (in lyrics) reflect or resonate with – or sometimes set up oppositions with – key features of the music itself

Assessment tasks

  • Early low risk test
  • Final exam

Creative and Innovative

Our graduates will also be capable of creative thinking and of creating knowledge. They will be imaginative and open to experience and capable of innovation at work and in the community. We want them to be engaged in applying their critical, creative thinking.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Develop understanding of how humans think, feel and communicate with each other
  • Understanding of music as a multimodal communicative (semiotic) practice
  • For text-based music, explain how key features of the language (in lyrics) reflect or resonate with – or sometimes set up oppositions with – key features of the music itself

Assessment tasks

  • Early low risk test
  • Group project
  • Written assignment
  • Final exam

Effective Communication

We want to develop in our students the ability to communicate and convey their views in forms effective with different audiences. We want our graduates to take with them the capability to read, listen, question, gather and evaluate information resources in a variety of formats, assess, write clearly, speak effectively, and to use visual communication and communication technologies as appropriate.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Understanding of music as a multimodal communicative (semiotic) practice
  • Have a general understanding of how music from different cultures and different historical periods has varied, and how this variation forms part of the changing cultural and psychological context of human societies
  • For text-based music, explain how key features of the language (in lyrics) reflect or resonate with – or sometimes set up oppositions with – key features of the music itself

Assessment tasks

  • Group project
  • Written assignment
  • Final exam

Engaged and Ethical Local and Global citizens

As local citizens our graduates will be aware of indigenous perspectives and of the nation's historical context. They will be engaged with the challenges of contemporary society and with knowledge and ideas. We want our graduates to have respect for diversity, to be open-minded, sensitive to others and inclusive, and to be open to other cultures and perspectives: they should have a level of cultural literacy. Our graduates should be aware of disadvantage and social justice, and be willing to participate to help create a wiser and better society.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Understanding of music as a multimodal communicative (semiotic) practice
  • Understanding of human capacities of perception, memory, affect, mutual understanding and co-operation, which underpin musical expression and appreciation
  • Have a general understanding of how music from different cultures and different historical periods has varied, and how this variation forms part of the changing cultural and psychological context of human societies

Assessment tasks

  • Early low risk test
  • Group project
  • Written assignment
  • Final exam

Socially and Environmentally Active and Responsible

We want our graduates to be aware of and have respect for self and others; to be able to work with others as a leader and a team player; to have a sense of connectedness with others and country; and to have a sense of mutual obligation. Our graduates should be informed and active participants in moving society towards sustainability.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Develop understanding of how humans think, feel and communicate with each other
  • Have a general understanding of how music from different cultures and different historical periods has varied, and how this variation forms part of the changing cultural and psychological context of human societies

Assessment tasks

  • Early low risk test
  • Group project
  • Written assignment
  • Final exam

Capable of Professional and Personal Judgement and Initiative

We want our graduates to have emotional intelligence and sound interpersonal skills and to demonstrate discernment and common sense in their professional and personal judgement. They will exercise initiative as needed. They will be capable of risk assessment, and be able to handle ambiguity and complexity, enabling them to be adaptable in diverse and changing environments.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Understanding of music as a multimodal communicative (semiotic) practice
  • Have a general understanding of how music from different cultures and different historical periods has varied, and how this variation forms part of the changing cultural and psychological context of human societies

Assessment tasks

  • Group project
  • Written assignment

Commitment to Continuous Learning

Our graduates will have enquiring minds and a literate curiosity which will lead them to pursue knowledge for its own sake. They will continue to pursue learning in their careers and as they participate in the world. They will be capable of reflecting on their experiences and relationships with others and the environment, learning from them, and growing - personally, professionally and socially.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Develop understanding of how humans think, feel and communicate with each other
  • Understanding of music as a multimodal communicative (semiotic) practice
  • Be able to use key concepts from linguistics and psychology to describe different kinds of music in terms of the symbolic resources that are drawn on to achieve each piece/song’s purpose as a communicative event

Assessment tasks

  • Early low risk test
  • Group project
  • Written assignment
  • Final exam