Re: web teaching?

Subject: Re: web teaching?
From: Dennis Bathory-Kitsz (
Date: Tue Aug 03 1999 - 21:27:29 EDT

At 06:08 PM 8/3/99 -0300, Steven Naylor wrote:
>So far we seem to have a few specifics (web-posted assignments, internet
>research/cultural exposure, discussion groups), but nothing too adventurous.
>Anyone dealing with sonic examples (and related copyright issues) on a
>class site?
>Anyone use a class-specific discussion group in lieu of meetings
>(scary.......)? I've reached the 'required supplement' stage, but anything
>further seems quite impractical).
>Anyone doing formal one-on-one teaching via the internet, private www sites?

Let me jump in briefly here with some experiences -- both individually and
with the K&D site.

First the K&D site. We did a composer mentoring project from 1997-1998,
engaging 14 composers from the US and Europe to work on-line with
elementary school students. It was real-time exchange of both conversation
and music (in Midi format). It was a great success, and the program has
continued locally and with an extensive intranet site for student composers
to work both one-on-one and in groups with regular composer participants.
The remaining public website can still be found at ... the Internet portion of the program
was closed because the teachers feared that students might be harmed by
criticism from 'outsiders'. I don't agree, but K&D had completed its role
in founding this program by the time the decisions were made to make it

I have privately mentored quite a few students on-line (none of whom I've
yet met in person), exchanging Midi and .wav files as well as scores. Some
of the teaching was quite formal, involving tasks and expectations and
research. Other teaching was not formal. In both cases, the 'lazy'
interaction took the pressure off and made it possible for the music to
grow very richly over a time period set by the students. Since there was no
physical meeting place, no schedules were tied up. Only the real-time
discussions needed coordination. The reflective discussions were conducted
via email and the interactive ones via ICQ, with files exchanged as we
spoke. Because I have access to my FTP site, I was able to
post suggestions and receive revisions quickly.

Also, my stepdaughter is in school on line, in her second year of a program
exclusively developed for working students. Discussions are held in real
time on a virtual campus in the late evening, and work is posted on an
intranet. She has been very happy with it. She embarked on the program
because she is on the road (equestrian training) and can't attend a
bricks-and-mortar school. Occasional physical materials are exchanged via
UPS, and the groups meet twice a semester for initial and final projects.

Finally, I have to say that the Internet 'laboratory' itself has been a
great learning tool for me. I don't mean research, but rather the exchange
with colleagues on this list and others, EAM and other composer community
websites, and of course the riches on the sites that have music to hear. I
am more than happy to listen 'past' the weaknesses of RealAudio merely so I
can hear some of the music. (I wish more of the participants in this list
would make their work public that way -- despite the resistance to
compressing and stereo- (or even mono-) izing their work.)

Frankly I wouldn't be too quick to put it all down as "nothing too
adventurous". Just remember how it was in 1990!


The Transitive Empire
Kalvos & Damian's New Music Bazaar
Erzsebet The Vampire Opera
The Middle-Aged Hiker

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