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Research Project Outline Example

Project Objective:

The student will learn about the life, times, and work of an individual composer in the western art music tradition. The student will:

  • Select a composer from a list provided by the instructor
  • Find reliable information about that composer through research
  • Report their findings through a properly formatted and properly documented essay.


  • All components of the research project will be submitted to “TURNITIN.COM” in order to be evaluated for originality and/or plagiarism. Any material that (in the judgement of the instructor) contains excessive “borrowed” or plagiarized material will receive NO CREDIT. If you are unsure of the rules of plagiarism, please
    • consult the online materials
    • consult the instructor
    • consult with a research librarian
    • consult with a writing tutor
General Guidelines: (failure to follow any of these will affect your grade)
  • All material should follow MLA guidelines: https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/747/01/
  • Each component of the project must be submitted directly to TURNITIN.COM.
  • The bibliography in steps two and three must follow standard MLA formatting guidelines (see above)
    • NOTE for all internet sources I require the MLA citation AND the web address
  • The in-text citations in step three must follow standard MLA formatting guidelines (see above)
  • Late submissions will not be accepted. Any work may be submitted early, but each component must be received by 11:59 PM of the posted due date. A grade of zero will be automatically assigned for work not received on time.

Process and Timeline:

  • Step one: Topic choice (due October 15) FIVE POINTS
    • Student must choose their topic from the list supplied by the instructor (see below)
    • Student must inform the instructor of their choice in a document submitted to TURNITIN.COM (KEEP YOUR RECEIPT AS PROOF)
    • The body of the document must state which topic you have chosen, and why you think it might be interesting. Two or three paragraphs should be sufficient.
  • Step two: Annotated list of sources (Due November 5) TWENTY FIVE POINTS
    • Student is expected to find and evaluate a minimum of five sources of information about the assigned topic. Sources may be online or print. The class textbook is NOT to be listed, although you may certainly use it in Step Three.
    • Student will prepare an annotated bibliography of their sources.
      • Each source must be listed using standard MLA formatting.
        • NOTE: all internet sources must have both the correctly formatted citation AND the web address
      • Each item listed must be followed by a 2-3 paragraph description answering the following questions
        • What kind of information is included in the source?
        • Why should this information be considered authoritative and trustworthy?
      • The bibliography must be submitted to TURNITIN.COM before the deadline KEEP YOUR RECEIPT AS PROOF
      • Consult the resources provided in Blackboard for guidelines on preparing and formatting your bibliography.
  • Step three: Final report (Due Dec 3) TWENTY POINTS
    • Final report must contain:
      • Brief summary of the life of the composer (minimum one page) *
      • Brief description/discussion of the music that the composer created (minimum one page)*
        • REQUIRED: at least one link to an online audio or video sample of the composer’s music
      • Description of how this composer’s music compares to specific musical works that were presented in the class (minimum one page)
      • Properly formatted (use MLA guidelines) bibliography of sources (NOT annotated)
    • The report must be submitted to TURNITIN.COM before the deadline KEEP YOUR RECEIPT AS PROOF

*NOTE that section i and ii MUST include citations of sources for all your factual information following MLA guidelines. All sources cited must also appear in the bibliography. Consult the resources provided in Blackboard for guidelines on preparing and formatting your bibliography and your citations.

List of Available Topics:

Choose One of The Following Composers For Your Project

    • Bernart de Ventadorn
    • Adam de la Halle
    • Beatritz de Dia (sometimes called Comtessa de Dia)
    • Francesco Landini
    • Gilles Binchois
    • Guillaume Dufay
    • John Dunstable (sometimes spelled Dunstaple)
    • Heinrich Isaac
    • John Taverner
    • Thomas Tallis
    • Tomas Luis de Victoria
    • John Dowland
    • Heinrich Schutz
    • Francesca Caccini
    • Dieterich Buxtehude
    • Barbara Strozzi
    • Johann Pachelbel
    • Georg PhilipTelemann
    • William Boyce
    • Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach
    • Johann Christian Bach
    • Michael Haydn
    • Antonio Salieri
    • Gioachino Rossini
    • Gaetano Donizetti
    • John Field
    • Clara Schumann
    • Franz Liszt
    • Max Bruch
    • Anton Bruckner
  • 20th CENTURY COMPOSERS (some also active in the late 19th century)
    • Gabriel Faure
    • Edward Elgar
    • Erik Satie
    • Amy Beach (sometimes called Amy Marcy Cheney Beach)
    • Sergei Rachmaninoff
    • Edgard Varese
    • Sergei Prokofiev
    • Paul Hindemith
    • Ruth Crawford Seeger
    • David Diamond
    • Milton Babbitt
    • Joan Tower
    • Ellen Taaffe Zwillich

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