Spring 2024 MECA
Continuing Education Courses
American Music History
This course is a survey of the broad American musical landscape from the colonial period until the present day. This course will focus on the history and development of both classical and vernacular musical traditions in America. Course topics will include music in colonial New England, early American folk and popular songs, African-American music, Band music, Ragtime, Blues, Jazz, American art songs, and minimalism.
* This course is offered at two course levels. Students enrolled in the MMEd program at VanderCook are eligible to enroll for the 500 course number. Students not enrolled in the MMEd program who wish to earn graduate credit as a MECA Continuing Education student should register for the four digit course number. The difference in credits earned and tuition cost is attributed to the difference in tuition rates for the MMEd and MECA Continuing Education programs. If you are unsure which section is best for you, please contact us directly at [email protected].
Jean Ferris. America’s Musical Landscape. (8th edition, 2019). McGraw Hill.
Useful, but not required:
Harold Gleason and Warren Becker. Early American Music: Music in America from 1620-1920, Music Literature Outlines – Series III. (2nd edition, 1986). Frangipani Press.
Harold Gleason and Warren Becker. 20th-Century American Composers, Music Literature Outlines – Series IV. (2nd edition, 1980). Frangipani Press.
Learning Platform Information (Online Courses Only)
Schoology is a learning management system that allows you to interact directly with your instructors, fellow students, and members of the greater VanderCook community.
The evening before your class begins, be on the lookout for an email from Schoology with log-in instructions. Once you receive credentials, visit www.online.vandercook.edu to login.
Some courses have specific online chat meeting times (please see course descriptions), while others have a flexible meeting schedule. You can expect all courses to meet together in a live online chat. If a live meeting time doesn’t work, you can work with your instructor to make other arrangements.
More information about Schoology can be found at www.schoology.com
Please see specific software/hardware requirements in the course description.
Online course grades are available within two weeks of the course(s) completion. If you need a transcript, please CLICK HERE to access the online transcript request form. For a faster turnaround time, please submit the transcript request to the registrar prior to the end of your course(s).
Michael Becker received his Bachelor of Arts degree in music from North Park University, and a Master of Music degree in musicology from Roosevelt University.
At VanderCook, Becker teaches undergraduate and graduate music history and world music courses, and is co-facilitator of the community drum circles. He also teaches world music courses at Waubonsee Community College and Saint Xavier University.
An active performer, Becker is a member of Digitally Correct Meta-Troubadours, a group dedicated to exploratory performance of improvised and semi-improvised music, combining world music instruments with digital sound processing. He is also a co-founder of the Home Street Recorder Ensemble, a trio that performs recorder repertoire of the 13th-20th centuries. Becker collects and plays a variety of instruments, including Native American flutes, and sells instruments from around the world through his business Native Sounds.