Public Practice Concentration

Public practice concentration

An in-house faculty committee consisting of professors from Folklore and Ethnomusicology, working with the student services assistant, will oversee all aspects of the concentration and advise you on courses, signing off on the practicum and electives used to fulfill this requirement.

You should seek the advice and signature of a member of the in-house committee during the period of advising, prior to signing up for classes. A sheet for the required classes, with the appropriate signatures, will be created and maintained in your file.

Upon successful completion of this program of courses, a member of the committee will add a letter to your permanent file indicating successful completion of the concentration. This letter will describe the concentration’s scope and purpose and a copy of this letter will be provided to you for inclusion in portfolios, internship and job application packets, and for similar purposes.

This concentration consists of 4 classes, for a total of 12 credits.

  • F532 Public Practice in Folklore and Ethnomusicology
  • One of our Practicum or laboratory courses - F802 TAI Practicum, F803 Practicum, F805 Laboratory in Public Practice, or F806 Museum Practicum in Folklore (Must be taken for 3 credits)
  • Two approved elective courses offered in the department

Explores the breadth of professional practice in Folklore and Ethnomusicology outside of college and university settings. Emphasis is placed on the development of conceptual knowledge central to publicly engaged scholarship, irrespective of the particular contexts in which scholars might be employed.

Designed as a practicum for students to work collaboratively in applying the methods and approaches of folklore studies to public needs and public programs. Students will engage in a variety of outreach projects linking the university to the larger community in the areas of public arts and culture and cultural documentation.

Individualized, supervised work in publicly oriented programs in folklore or ethnomusicology, such as public arts agencies, museums, historical commissions, and archives. Relevant readings and written report required.

Covers the research, design, creation, presentation, and assessment of public folklore projects. The learning laboratory provides students with experience in the public sector and critical perspectives on the theories, methods, and models employed in this field. The course includes weekly meetings to review readings and resources and discuss project progress.

Folklore-oriented practicum at the Mathers Museum of World Cultures or another museum. Relevant readings, participation, and a capstone event are required. For detailed information on practicum, see the Museum Practicum Guide available for the Mathers Museum of World Cultures.

Approved public practice electives

Prepares students to work as mediators between vernacular and institutional discourses and agendas; apply folkloristic skills to social problem-solving; trace the history of applied folklore; provide training in cultural mediation, rapid ethnography, needs analysis, other applied skills; survey work of folklorists in important applied areas including law, medicine, education.

Investigates histories and trajectories of applied ethnomusicology while preparing students to conceptualize and develop their own work in the subfield. Will map definitions of applied, advocacy, activist, engaged, and public sector work and trace connections to other disciplines. Discussions focus on research approaches, tools, and methodologies within applied ethnomusicology circles.

Explores the use of multimedia technology in five basic areas of ethnographic activity: field research, laboratory research (transcription and analysis), preservation, presentation, and publication. Knowledge of technological concepts and skill development in the use of various technologies are pursued through a project-based approach, which emphasizes learning by doing.

An in-depth investigation into the field of critical ethnography. Explores the theoretical, methodological, and applied aspects of qualitative research, seeking a better understanding of how ethnographic approaches may be mobilized for policy change, the creation of emancipatory knowledge, and the pursuit of social justice.

This class analyzes the complex relationship between human beings and the material world they inhabit and create to better comprehend the institution of the museum. An understanding of material culture helps us view how makers, users, and viewers relate to objects in homes, commercial establishments and eventually, in museums.

The course presents basic skills for research and professional practice in social science and humanities museums. In addition to curatorial skills, the course explores how theoretical, ethical, and methodological problems are addressed in day-to-day museum work. Taught in campus museums, the course includes hands-on activities, seminar discussion, and collections research.

Drawing on methods and theories in folklore studies and allied fields (ethnomusicology, cultural anthropology), this graduate seminar examines cultural heritage and cultural property practices and contests through particular cases considered ethnographically, widespread phenomena viewed comparatively, and key concepts engaged theoretically. Illustrative themes include appropriation, tourism, repatriation, traditional knowledge, and copyright.

Considers critical discourses surrounding intertwined notions of tourism, authenticity, and nostalgia. Explores tourism from cultural, symbolic, and social perspectives, paying particular attention to the tourist gaze and the relationship of the visitor to the people/culture being visited. Examines notions of authenticity and the way such notions are commodified and configured.

Explores filmmaking as ethnography and envisions cinema as a mode of scholarship. Combines discussion of emerging theories, consideration of contemporary and classic efforts at ethnographic documentation through film (i.e., film viewing), and workshops putting together short documentaries during the course.