Faculty of Arts

Monash University

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2015 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.

FacultyFaculty of Arts
Organisational UnitSir Zelman Cowen School of Music
OfferedClayton First semester 2015 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr Jonathan McIntosh


This unit surveys the history of popular music as mediated through selected musical trends from the late nineteenth century to the present day, for example, jazz, blues, rhythm and blues, rock 'n' roll, punk and hip-hop. Focusing on influential performers, composers and producers, the unit also examines how popular music styles emerged and how they have influenced each other. The unit is open to all students with an interest in music. No prior musical experience required.


Upon successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate knowledge of primary musical terminology and its function in describing various popular music styles.
  2. Demonstrate knowledge of selected major styles and stylistic trends in popular music, with an emphasis on the specific musical characteristics which define each tradition.
  3. Understand how to write about music through critical observation and analysis.


Within semester assessment: 100%

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload to achieve the learning outcomes for this unit is 144 hours per semester typically comprising a mixture of scheduled learning activities and independent study. A unit requires on average three/four hours of scheduled activities per week. Scheduled activities may include a combination of teacher directed learning, peer directed learning and online engagement.

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study