The Writing Portfolio is a revision of writing you’ve completed and received feedback on over the course of the term. The complete instructions are available on the handout you received on the first day of class, which is available here.

Kinds of writing

  • Reflection, memoir, (auto)biography
  • Articles / News
  • Op/Ed
  • Gossip page or gossip blog
  • Horoscope
  • True crime
  • Story
  • Diary or journal
  • Kinds of fiction: science fiction, YA novel, fantasy, ghost, mystery, romance
  • Religious, mythology, folk tales
  • Poetry
  • Lyrics
  • Directions
  • Letters
  • Scripts
  • Texts
  • Social media: Facebook, Instagram, snaps, tweets
  • Advertisement, Slogans

Examples of writing


Humor/story telling and observation

Examples of blog writing

Examples of think-piece essays

These are good examples of ways that authors connect music and musical analysis to broader issues in society.

Examples of past Student Blog Posts

Students from previous semesters have submitted some really great blog posts — informative, well-written, entertaining, thoughtful, and personable. As you read these, think about what each author does well, how their personality comes through in the post, and various aspects of blog presentation: what makes for a catchy title, layout, headings, inclusion of images or videos throughout the post, etc.

In-class writing prompts

You may choose to revisit and expand any of these as a piece for your Writing Portfolio, using the prompt as a starting point for your ideas.

  • When has a piece of music, something you either created or heard, made a significant impact on your life? What qualities or context made that piece so significant?
  • What’s something that surprised you in today’s class?
  • What was the most interesting or surprising thing you learned from an assigned reading?
  • What can you learn from an in-person discussion that you can’t learn any other way?
  • How is thinking like a musicologist different from how you typically listen to music?
  • Why bother thinking like a musicologist?
  • Explain to someone how to listen for a musical element (e.g. rhythm, harmony, texture, form, melody) or how to understand a concept we’ve studied in Mu 101 (soundscape, music history, etc.).
  • What kind of skills do you think you would to be a member of a string quartet or a member of an orchestra? What kinds of challenges do you think you would face as a member of one of those groups?
  • What’s the most important factor in determining what a piece of music means? (the musical sounds, the listener’s past experience/knowledge, how a listener listens, the musician’s identity/choices/skill)?
  • Is it necessary to know who a musician is (as a person) when listening to a piece of music?
  • Design an opera.