You are on page 1of 9

James Burns

University of California Santa Barbara

Writing 2
Zack De Piero
November 2, 2015
The Benefits of Music
I love music. Whether im listening to it or playing it myself, its prevalent in my every-

Zack De Piero 11/11/2015 1:34 PM

Comment [1]:
What's this, Jimmy B? If/when it's not
something that's obvious, it might be worth
explaining -- even if it's super-brief.

Zack De Piero 11/11/2015 1:34 PM

day life. So, I decided to analyze two scholarly publications, one discussing the benefits of music

Comment [2]:
OK, I'll take. This is a short'n'sweet Intro,
but it worked.

from a psychological standpoint and the other from a sociological standpoint, as well as a non-

The train rolls on.

scholarly article from collective-evolution discussing musical benefits in general, and compare
their rhetorical features to understand how they are similar and different. By comparing the three
different sources on the benefits of music, it is clear that they vary in structure, content, and
moves, which signifies differences in the intended audience, rhetoric, and the authors purpose.
The pieces I chose [discussing the benefits of music] possessed conventions that were
rather different with respect to content. They all began with an introduction, but the tone and
type of language used in each piece were very different. The publication with the psychological
discipline began with a story from the authors childhood and had a more-casual tone as well as
the non-scholarly article. The publication from the sociological discipline began with presenting

Zack De Piero 11/11/2015 1:35 PM

Comment [3]:
Brackets are only used to "massage"
quotes. I think you wanted to use
parentheses here, but I'm not they'd really
do anything for you here.
Zack De Piero 11/11/2015 1:36 PM
Comment [4]:
I'm looking for a mini-road map in your
topic sentence -- where will I be traveling
in this paragraph? Gimme some more
Zack De Piero 11/11/2015 1:37 PM
Comment [5]:
I don't know too much about this
publication, JB -- the title, the author, what
they were interested in...
Don't you think it'd help to know this stuff
from the get-go? That way I can make
more sense of the finer points of your

typically have a more formal tone(Navigating Genres), so the psychological publication didnt

Zack De Piero 11/11/2015 1:39 PM

Comment [6]:
Example/evidence for this? Help me *see*

conform to the convention as precisely. The non-scholarly article, however, did conform to the

Also, I think you're jumping around a bit.

the reader with research facts and possessed a more formal tone. These scholarly publications

conventions of its genre with a more casual tone.

In addition to tone, the content of these pieces varied. The psychological publication
provided proven facts about the benefits of music and presented the reader with a try-it-yourself
list of methods that increase your levels of memorization, interest, and creativity. In contrast, the

Zack De Piero 11/11/2015 1:40 PM

Comment [7]:
Well, what were they? This sounds
interesting and important!
Zack De Piero 11/11/2015 1:41 PM
Comment [8]:
Is this try-it-yourself "move" they made
consequential? Does that rhetorical
device signify anything about them as
writers/researchers? Can you weave that
into your argument in any meaningful

sociological publication presented an experiment with methods and results in order to prove its
validity. It included the surveyed responses of test victims, and furthermore discussed how music
can positively impact people personally and socially. The non-scholarly piece simply discussed

Zack De Piero 11/11/2015 1:41 PM

Comment [9]:
Victims? Of what?

the many benefits of music without a specific discipline. Here, the scholarly articles conform to
the convention of presenting detailed, factual data in a way that supports their clams. The nonscholarly article conforms to the convention of being more broad and providing evidence that
isnt explained through visuals and raw data[the evidence is more-so in the form of alreadyproven facts and statements]. Therefore, these conventions clearly distinguish differences
between scholarly and non-scholarly texts.
Aside from the conventions regarding content, each piece possessed structural
conventions that were both similar and different. The sociological publication was structured
with different sections and included charts and diagrams in order to exemplify the evidence and
findings from the experiment. Similarly, the psychological publication was structured with
various sections and included charts. It also included scales of practice techniques in order to

Zack De Piero 11/11/2015 1:42 PM

Comment [10]:
I like how you're dividing this up by idea
instead of source 1, source 2, source 3...
but I want/need a lot more textual
evidence, JB. I want you to get into the
specifics. *Teach me* about what's
happening in these articles and how these
folks have researched this stuff.
Zack De Piero 11/11/2015 1:43 PM
Comment [11]:
Again, more direction would be helpful to
me as a reader.

give the reader [if theyre a musician] an example of the method to apply. Consistent with these,
the non-scholarly article was split into sections too, but didnt include diagrams or charts.
Instead, it provided the reader with a video at the bottom of the page explaining facts and
research behind musical benefits. What all of these factual conventions have in common is that

Zack De Piero 11/11/2015 1:44 PM

Comment [12]:
Could this be connected with an aspect of
visual literacy/rhetoric?

they are used to provide the reader with evidence in order to prove the argument's validity [music
has many benefits].
Each of these pieces about the benefits of music have moves made by the author that
affect the rhetoric behind them immensely, build credibility, and reveal intentions as well as
audience. To start, the psychological publication uses color. It has a big picture of a clock and a

Zack De Piero 11/11/2015 1:44 PM

Comment [13]:
Worth defining/describing this?

person playing a violin which is used to draw the reader in. Normally, these scholarly
publications are black, white, and boring, so the authors use of color makes the piece look
interesting and not so insipid. The sub-headings are also colored in non-academic, differently-

Zack De Piero 11/11/2015 1:45 PM

Comment [14]:
Super boring.

sized font which parallels the style and tone of the article and reveals the broader audience that it
conforms to. It makes it less formal and more exciting, so both young and old readers will pay
interest. Furthermore, the authors first paragraph begins with, I started figure skating at the age
of ten. This move[beginning with a story] functions as a hook for the reader, but also develops a
sense of personality from the author. This makes the authors claims more credible and develops
a sense of ethos.
The authors moves in the sociological publication differ from those of the psychological,
but function similarly. Instead of telling a story to develop a sense of personality and develope
ethos, the author presents the reader with raw facts explaining findings from previous research
and sights them. The article is black and white and uses formal, academic text that parallels the
tone and style of the article and functions to give it a more formal appearance. Here, the author is
presenting research both past and self-conducted so formal, uncolored text is appropriate. It
makes the paper seem more sophisticated, conforming to a more mature audience, and succeeds
in developing ethos. Another move that the author makes in this piece is using charts to present
data. These charts include weighted categories with survey responses [from test subjects] to how
music has benefited them, in order to present clear and concise data that will help the reader
understand the big idea. In the article Spaces for Writing[In the Course Reader], it states,
nineteenth-century books on rhetoric often incorporated illustrations and diagrams to help their
readers become better speakers and writers.(pg. 10). In essence, these diagrams and
illustrations increased readers understanding which evidently improved the way they learned to

Zack De Piero 11/11/2015 1:45 PM

Comment [15]:
Great! This! A lot more of this!

speak and write. This parallels the function of the charts used in the sociological publication, and
proves that they are, indeed, effective.
The non-scholarly article uses moves that serve to develop ethos, like the scholarly
publications, but also to answer the so what? question as to why music is so important (So
What? Who Cares? Saying why it matters). Unlike the other texts, this one leans to persuade
instead of presenting the reader with raw facts to form an opinion on[logos]. The author begins
with explaining her love for music, then presents the reader with a quote from the lead singer of
the band Green Day, Billy Joel, exemplifying his passionate feelings on music: I think music in
itself is healing. Its an explosive expression of humanity. Its something we are all touched by.
No matter what culture were from, everyone loves music.. The authors purpose here is to
establish credibility in her claim, but to also persuade the reader that music is important and
support the answer to the So What? question. Theres also a video at the bottom which
includes a discussion of research findings and the many benefits derived from music in order to

Zack De Piero 11/11/2015 1:46 PM

Comment [16]:
Credibility is a consistent theme in your
paper thus far -- I think you might want to
more explicitly and continuously tie this
back to your central argument.

further establish credibility and persuade the reader. Another effective move used in this text is
the use of sub-categories that discuss the benefits of music. They separate the types of benefits
derived from playing/listening to music [health, mood, intellect] in order to organize the
information presented and provide the reader with a clear, meaningful read. This article uses
moderate language that could fit a more general audience, but because the content discusses
health benefits derived from music, it seems to be focussed toward a more mature audience who

Zack De Piero 11/11/2015 1:46 PM

Comment [17]:
Such as?

could apply these findings to both themselves and their kids.

To complement the authors moves embedded in each of these pieces, the way they are
constructed plays a key role in their effectiveness. The text presenting the benefits of music from
a psychological standpoint intends to prove how music can improve memory, creativity and

Zack De Piero 11/11/2015 1:47 PM

Comment [18]:
What do you mean by "they" here? The
moves? Or the pieces?
Whenever you use pronouns -- it, they,
them -- try to make sure it's clear what
you're referring to.

learning ability. It begins with an intro and then goes into the topic of avoiding the habitual
effect. It lays out the broad aspects of it and explains how to go beyond repetition while
practicing. After explaining the broad aspects of these techniques, it goes into detail about them
in a sub-section titled Bar By Bar The Random Practice Schedule On a Micro Level. The
construction of this text makes it easier to understand because it builds on itself and gives the
reader general knowledge of the material before going into detail that could be a bit more
difficult. This is very effective because it makes the difference between understanding a text
fully and deriving only partial meaning.
The construction of the sociological text builds on itself too. It presents copious amounts
of evidence initially, explaining research that was previously done on the topic, which gives the
reader a general idea of the experiments done as well as the topic in general. The author then
explains their own experiment and how they conducted it, and follows with charts and diagrams
exemplifying the benefits of music. The purpose of presenting the information in such a way that
it builds upon itself is to increase the easiness of understanding for the reader. By introducing the
nature of the experiment in layers and including visual diagrams that reinforce the findings, the
reader already has a general understanding before being introduced details, which makes the
material more comprehensive.
To counter, the non-scholarly piece is a bit different in the way its constructed. It begins
with the question who doesnt love music? and then goes on to talk about its touching abilities
with respect to culture and history. It provides an introduction that gives the reader an overview
of the topic and then goes into the seven ways music benefits your heart, brain, and health.
Instead of having multiple layers that continue to build upon themselves, it takes the form of two

Zack De Piero 11/11/2015 1:47 PM

Comment [19]:
For sure.

layers more so. It gives the reader the big picture as background, and then goes into the facts that
are easier understood from the provided background.
Each of these texts possess similarities and differences within their moves, intentions, and
purposes. By analyzing the rhetorical features and identifying hidden aspects, they become more
evident and can tell us a lot about the piece as a whole. Doing so can benefit the way we read and
write and enable us to incorporate these findings in the way we approach texts of all shapes and

1) Christine Carter, Practicing Shouldnt Feel Boring, December 2012, The Strad,
2) Dimitra Kokotsakia * and Susan Hallamb, The perceived benefits of participative music
making for non-music university students: a comparison with music students, June 2011, Music
Education Research Vol. 13, No. 2,

3) Joe Martino, 7 Ways Music Benefits Your Heart, Brain, & Health, MArch 13, 2014,
4) Birkenstein & Graff, So What? Who Cares? Saying Why it Matters, Writing 2 Course
Reader, pg. 70

5)Kerry Dirk, Navigating Genres, Writing 2 Course Reader, Pg 19

6)Losh & Alexander, Writing Spaces, Writing 2 Course Reader, Pg 9

Writing 2 Feedback Matrix for WP2

Table of Textual Features

Did Not Meet

Met Expectations

Thesis Statement
Use of Textual Evidence


from Genres
Use of Course Readings






Attention to

Genre/Conventions and
Rhetorical Factors
Sentence-level Clarity,

Mechanics, Flow

Other Comments


Nice work here. To take this to the next level, here are some ideas:

- I need more of an argument here. Move past describing and get to evaluating -- try to pinpoint
the so what? of this assignment as much as possible.
-Include a lot more analysis of the kinds of data/evidence these different sources are using and
what kinds of RQs theyre asking. Consider some of the big pictures questions here that get at
how do these different disciplines approach this topic from different perspectives? What was
the study about? What questions did they ask? What data did they gather? How do the ways in
which these researchers went about studying this topic differ from the other authors/researchers,
and what does it suggest in terms of the importance they're placing on their methods?

-Think about what kind of structure/organization would be best suited for your argument

-Consider working in moves earlier on and adding in more of them -- I thought that your
section on moves was very good. Give them a name too, just like you did in PB2B.

-Work in the course readings a bit more. Use them to help you use the language of the course
and to develop your argument.