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Module

MUS1001 : Essentials of Music Theory

  • Offered for Year: 2020/21
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Paul Fleet
  • Owning School: Arts & Cultures
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semesters
Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0

Aims

This module is designed for students new to music theory. The module will enable them to recognise, notate and compose features of music essential to common practice tonality. By the close of the module the student should have achieved a level of attainment equivalent to ABRSM Grade 5 Theory.

Outline Of Syllabus

The module begins with an exploration of written musical materials both by hand and by digital notation software, moving onto nomenclature and terminology, clefs and pitches, key signatures, primary and secondary triads, modulations and key triangles, transposition, time signatures and metric rhythms, four voice (SATB) harmony, Roman numerals and figured bass, and three chord cadences.

Within these scheduled learning and teaching activities, there will be also be Take Away Learning Exercises (TALEs) where students will learn and practice aural skills through embodied learning strategies. The themes of these workshops will begin with intervals, and move onto rhythm, melody, bass, harmony and the short score.

Finally, students will also undertake an E-Learning journey, using the software Musition (with a specifically created online curriculum authored by the module leader) in support of the weekly lectures to enable the students to practice and embed their skills outside of the immediate learning environment, and to monitor their own learning gain through weekly and incremental formative assessments.

Teaching Methods

Please note that module leaders are reviewing the module teaching and assessment methods for Semester 2 modules, in light of the Covid-19 restrictions. There may also be a few further changes to Semester 1 modules. Final information will be available by the end of August 2020 in for Semester 1 modules and the end of October 2020 for Semester 2 modules.

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Structured Guided LearningLecture materials11:001:00Introductory online video/lecture and materials
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion92:0018:00Inbetween sessions - reflect on learning outcomes and skills in relation to the assessment
Structured Guided LearningLecture materials82:0016:00Asynchronous online lecture material with associated tasks.
Structured Guided LearningAcademic skills activities10:300:30Introductory online video by the student introducing themselves to the learning group.
Structured Guided LearningAcademic skills activities92:0018:00Weekly - expected to practice handwritten & digital notation skills
Structured Guided LearningStructured non-synchronous discussion81:008:00Asynchronous online learning using the MUS1001 customised package Musition
Guided Independent StudyReflective learning activity90:304:30Asynchronous. Related to aural training learning exercises demo'd in online lectures
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study126:0026:00Used by student to analyse and evaluated learning & create from skills being explored
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesModule talk81:008:00Synchronous online lecture talk with discussion of the associated tasks.
Total100:00
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

To bring a student up to a level of conversational music theory and literacy and to be able to pass a Grade 5 ABRSM Music Theory paper the lectures, workshops, and on-line delivery of materials targets the students’ different modes of ‘learning and performing’ (following the Eduardo Briceño pedagogical model) inside and outside of the classroom. The curriculum is devised to enable the student at the close of the twelve weeks to be able to communicate, construct and create musical materials with their peers in a professional and/or undergraduate academic environment.

Assessment Methods

Please note that module leaders are reviewing the module teaching and assessment methods for Semester 2 modules, in light of the Covid-19 restrictions. There may also be a few further changes to Semester 1 modules. Final information will be available by the end of August 2020 in for Semester 1 modules and the end of October 2020 for Semester 2 modules.

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Case study1A100This will be a take away paper that will assess the intended knowledge outcomes 1-5, and the intended skill outcomes 1 -7.
Formative Assessments
Description Semester When Set Comment
Computer assessment1AThese will be weekly assessments undertaken on the software package Musition.
Written exercise1MIntended Skill Outcome 8 to 10 explored & demonstrated during synchronous online activity
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The students are being tested on their abilities to write music (by hand and by software), talk about music using the correct terminology, listen and comprehend musical materials, and then close the circle by writing and writing-about the materials to which they have just listened. The rationale is to enable the student to engage with music theory and literacy to a standard that then enables them to work with other literate musicians.

Reading Lists

Timetable