The mission of the performing arts major is to offer a liberal arts curriculum in music, theatre, and dance that will enable each student the opportunity to fully develop his or her talents and abilities in the arts. This curriculum preserves tradition, welcomes innovation, and allows a flexible personalized course of study grounded in experiential learning. It is also designed to foster an understanding of the interdisciplinary connections among the three component disciplines of the major, and will prepare majors for further study in graduate school, or for entry level positions in the performing arts. The major provides study and practice in the areas of performance, history and literature, theory and criticism. In addition, opportunities are provided to gain experience in arts management, marketing, technology and design.
The mission of the music concentration within the performing arts major is to enable individual students to develop their talents as musicians and scholars to the fullest possible extent. To that end, students will be taught to cultivate musical taste and judgment; to be critical in their thinking and performing; to acquire and develop problem-solving skills; and to learn and to value the importance of cooperative efforts in performance, with the intention that these values will become a part of their ongoing personal and professional lives.
II. Program Goals: The
Implementation of the
The foundation for the music concentration is the acquisition of a working knowledge of music history, music theory, and music performing techniques, with the ability to apply this knowledge, and communicate it effectively through speaking and writing, as well as through performance. To this end, students will be required to complete prescribed course work in:
Music Theory and Analysis
Music History and Literature, and
Private Instrumental Instruction and Ensembles
In addition, students concentrating in music will develop an understanding of the relationship between music, dance, and theatre through taking fundamental courses in the latter two disciplines, and through actively participating in dance and theatre performances.
III. The Study of Music History and Literature
Concentration’s Music History requirements offer the student a concentrated
study of the histories, literatures, performance practices and cultural
contexts of music from Europe, the
These courses will provide the student with a basic knowledge of the stylistic elements of the music in the various periods of Western music history, and a broad knowledge of the representative repertoire in each of these periods.
In addition to acquiring this basic knowledge of Music History and Literature, students will achieve an understanding of the cultural and aesthetic aspects of this material, as well as an understanding of the cultural contexts and significance of the music of non-western cultures.
Also, they will develop research, analytical, and critical skills in order to achieve a better understanding of the music which they study and perform.
C. Criteria for Assessing Achievement of the Learning Objectives and Outcomes
1. Students studying Music History and Literature are expected to demonstrate their understanding of the materials and the acquisition of the knowledge contained therein through the following methods of assessment:
a. Students are to have completed any reading, listening or other assignments, prior to each class meeting. Students will be graded on their daily preparation, and on their class participation.
b. Acquisition, retention and understanding of the knowledge contained within the assigned materials will be assessed through periodic written tests, including comprehensive midterm and final examinations.
c. The student’s research, analytical and critical skills will be assessed through the above exams as well, but the primary method of assessing these skills will be through the term papers to be written about topics either assigned by the professor or chosen by the student with the professor’s approval.
“A” - Excellent. Outstanding work, evidenced by active participation in discussion, and the ability to correctly answer questions related to the daily assignments. The student’s performance demonstrates an exemplary sense of discipline and preparation. Assigned work is completed with consistency, effort, and enthusiasm. Performance on exams is of excellent quality (well-prepared, thoughtful, and correct answers). Research for term papers is thorough, with the use of a variety of source types. Writing is grammatically correct and stylistically appropriate, including citation style. The “A” student shows obvious evidence of having studied consistently. Few or no excuses are made for not completing assignments.
“B” - Good. Generally good work. The student demonstrates good preparation for classes and examinations, and that assigned material is generally understood. However, progress may sometimes be inconsistent, indicating possible inadequate study habits or lack of follow-through on instructor’s suggestions. Assignments are generally completed, but not always in a timely manner. The “B” student has a generally good attitude, but class participation is somewhat inconsistent, and the student is occasionally under-prepared for classes. Papers are adequately researched and style, organization and grammatical usage are good. Since grades are not determined by study and performance alone, but also by behavior, the “B” student could possibly be an “A” student who is not working up to potential.
“C” - Satisfactory. Student is not always well-prepared for classes and examinations. The “C” student has a nonchalant attitude toward the course, and offers frequent excuses for lack of preparation and progress. There is a recurrent pattern of under-prepared classes and exams. It is apparent that the “C” student does not always study consistently, and may be attempting to learn the materials assigned during the class, rather than having prepared in advance. Papers are not thoroughly researched. Style, organization and grammar are marginal.
“D” - Marginal. The student demonstrates inadequate class preparation, failure to complete assignments, an excessive number of missed classes, and insufficient performance on exams. Under-prepared classes and excuses are the norm. The “D” student may have a negative attitude toward the course, or exhibit multiple and persistent unproductive behaviors in class. Papers are inadequately researched. Style, organization and grammar are poor.
“F” - Failure. Lack of progress. totally inadequate preparation for classes failure to complete assignments, and failing performance on a majority of graded exercises such as tests and papers.
IV. The Study of Music Theory and Analysis
A. Written Theory and Analysis
1. Learning Objectives of Music Theory Instruction:
a. To understand and read musical notation.
b. To gain skills in relating the aural and visual components of music through performance.
c. To understand the scalar and harmonic structures of music and to be able to identify their various forms.
d. To understand rhythmic function and its complexities.
e . To be able to identify and understand overall musical forms.
f. To gain experience in score reading.
g. To gain skills in keyboard technique using harmonic accompaniment with a melody.
h. To gain skills in aurally perceiving intervals, chords, and rhythms.
i. To gain an understanding of range and timbre of musical instruments
2. Learning Outcomes of Music Theory Instruction:
a. The student will demonstrate the ability to read music on a keyboard.
b. The student will demonstrate the ability to identify scales and chords both written and heard.
c. The student will demonstrate the ability to read and perform simple and complex rhythms.
d. The student will demonstrate the ability to analyze chord progressions, modulations, and part writing in musical works.
e. The student will demonstrate the ability to analyze musical forms.
f. The student will demonstrate the ability to read and understand a score.
g. The student will demonstrate the ability to play a harmonic accompaniment to a melody.
h. The student will demonstrate the ability to aurally identify intervals, chords, and rhythms.
i. The student will demonstrate a knowledge of the range, timbre and characteristics of the various musical instruments.
3. Criteria for Assessing the Achievement of the Learning Objectives and Outcomes
a. The students’ progress in reading music on a keyboard will be assessed regularly in the classroom. Suggestions will be made to improve any problem areas. There will be several formal evaluations of this skill during the class.
b. The students’ ability to identify scales and chords, both visually and aurally, will be assessed regularly in class, in assignments, and in formal quizzes and exams.
c. The assessment of the students’ ability to read and perform simple and complex rhythms will take place through the demonstration of this skill in class and on formal exams.
d. The assessment of the students’ ability to analyze chord progressions, modulations, and part-writing will be accomplished through the demonstration of analytical competency in formal assignments, quizzes and exams.
e. The assessment of the students’ ability to analyze musical form will be accomplished through demonstration of this ability in formal assignments, quizzes and exams.
f. The students’ ability to read a score will be assessed by demonstrating this skill in class and in formal assignments.
g. The students’ ability to provide a harmonic accompaniment to a melody will be assessed by the performance of this skill on a keyboard in class and on a formal exam.
h. The student will be assessed on the ability to aurally identify intervals, chords and rhythms both in class and on formal quizzes and exams.
i. The student will be assessed on the ability to demonstrate knowledge of the timbre, range and characteristics of musical instruments in class and on formal exams.
B. Computer-Based Recording, Composition and Synthesis (Songcraft)
1. Learning Objectives
a. To enable selected students to develop their song writing and composing skills.
b. Students learn to arrange and record their own music, and to mix and master their music to produce their own demo recording.
c. Students gain a competent knowledge of available recording technology and its operation, including microphone techniques and the operation of hard disk-based digital recording software and hardware.
d. Students develop the ability to conceive and arrange a piece of original music. The student should be able to communicate effectively his or her vision of form, instrumentation and texture for the work which is produced.
2. Learning Outcomes
The assignment for each semester is for the student to learn as much as he or she can about the techniques required to use the available recording equipment, and to compose, arrange, and record at least one piece of music. Each student is in charge of the production of his or her own song. Collaborative projects are encouraged, but it is very important that in such projects no one student ends up “running the show.” The guidelines for projects are as follows:
a. Each student is to write at least one song.
b. That student then becomes both the composer and producer; he or she is “in charge” of that song’s creation.
c. Other students may be brought in to record specific parts. For instance, if the student wants a guitar solo in his or her song, but the student doesn’t play guitar well enough to record one, he or she may have someone else play that part. Working with other students in the class in encouraged whenever possible.
d. When students are playing or singing on one of their classmate’s songs, they must respect that classmate’s vision and “authority” as the producer. Feedback and criticism are important, but only when asked for.
e. The final product should consist of at least one completed song or other piece of music burned to CD.
Students who are selected to participate in this course are expected to demonstrate progress appropriate to their individual levels of skill during semi-weekly classes in which they are taught a systematic approach to recording and song-writing technique, introduced to a variety of musical styles and genres, and coached as a group in appropriate studio practice.
Students will present their works in progress at each class and receive oral critiques from the instructor and their peers, based on the objectives outlined above, as appropriate. Student grades for each semester of study will be assigned from “A” to “F” based on the following criteria or grading rubrics:
“A.” Excellent. Outstanding work, evidenced by consistent progress in technical development, expression, and general engineering, production, and composing quality. The students’ performance demonstrates an exemplary sense of discipline and preparation. Assigned work is completed with consistency effort, and enthusiasm. Improvements are made and maintained, and musical and technical errors are systematically detected and corrected. Compositions and production are of excellent quality (well-prepared and well-performed). The “A” student shows obvious evidence of having prepared consistently. Few or no excuses are made for not completing assignments.
“B.” Good. The student demonstrates good preparation for classes. Compositions are of a relatively high quality, and the student has generally made good technical and musical progress. However, progress may sometimes be inconsistent, indicating possible inadequate work habits or lack of follow-through on instructor’s suggestions. Assignments generally completed, but not always in a timely manner. The “B” student has a generally good attitude, but error correction is somewhat inconsistent, and student is occasionally under-prepared for class. Since grades are not determined by talent alone, but also by behavior, the “B” student could possibly be an “A” student who is not working up to potential.
“C.” Satisfactory. The student has made adequate to minimal progress in technical and musical development. Student is not always well-prepared for class. Musical and technical errors sometimes are uncorrected from class to class. The “C” student has a nonchalant attitude toward the course, and offers frequent excuses for lack of preparation and progress. It is apparent that the “C” student does always work on his or her projects consistently, and may be attempting to learn the materials or skills assigned during the classes, rather than in their outside preparation time.
“D.” Marginal. The student demonstrates inadequate technical and musical progress, failure to complete assignments, and excessive number of missed classes, and insufficient preparation for the classes that are attended. Errors are frequently not noticed or corrected. Poor preparation for classes and excuses are the norm. The “D” student may have a negative attitude toward the course, or exhibit multiple and persistent unproductive behaviors in class or during other work sessions. The “D” student will not be permitted to continue taking Songcraft.
“F.” Failure. Lack of progress, totally inadequate preparation for classes and failure to complete assignments. The “F” student will not be permitted to continue taking Songcraft.
V. The Study of Performance Skills Through Private and Ensemble Instruction
A. Private Instruction
The goal of vocal and instrumental music instruction is the acquisition of technical facility on a musical instrument and the understanding and application of musical interpretation while performing.
1. Learning Objectives of Vocal and Instrumental Private Instruction
a. To learn how to sing or play an instrument as musically as possible within the range of the student’s ability.
b. To develop technical facility on the instrument, such as good articulation, refined sense of pitch, range of the instrument, good tone, and dynamic range.
c. To develop productive means of practicing with the highest concentration level in an efficient manner.
d. To gain efficient music reading skills with an understanding of musical terms and symbols.
e. To gain knowledge and mastery of all scales, arpeggios, and other musical patterns, as well as etudes, solos, and ensemble literature of various musical periods.
f. To demonstrate the significance of the expressive nature of music and understand that one must pay attention to its expressive value at all times.
g. To develop listening skills with attention to greater focus, refinement, and details through the study of recordings and attendance at live performances.
h. To successfully perform on student recitals and concerts with appropriate concert etiquette and demeanor
2. Learning Outcomes for Vocal and Instrumental Private Instruction
a. The student will demonstrate progress in weekly lessons by performing progressively more difficult technical studies, etudes, and repertoire from appropriate musical literature.
b. The student will demonstrate productive practicing habits by coming prepared for each lesson.
c. The student will demonstrate efficient music reading skills in weekly lessons by reading various works from the literature, chosen by the teacher.
d. The student will demonstrate mastery of scales, arpeggios, and perform etudes and solo works of the appropriate literature in weekly lessons.
e. The student will demonstrate an understanding of the expressive qualities of music in weekly lessons by performing etudes and solo works.
f. The student will demonstrate a development of listening skills by including these in performance preparation and discussion during weekly lessons.
g. The student will perform on student recitals, concerts, or master classes with appropriate concert etiquette and demeanor.
3. Criteria For the Assessment of Private Vocal and Instrumental Instruction
a. The student will be assessed at each lesson to determine progress in performing technical studies, etudes, and appropriate repertoire. Additional assignments will be given to address any problem areas.
b. The student will be assessed at each lesson to determine whether sufficient practice has occurred. Suggestions for improved efficiency will occur if necessary.
c. The student’s progress in music reading skills will be assessed on a regular basis. Additional literature will be presented to check the progress of this skill.
d. The student will be assessed on a regular basis to determine mastery of scales, arpeggios, and the ability to perform etudes and solo works from the repertoire. This assessment will result in further assignments to address any problem areas that may be evident.
e. The student‘s ability to demonstrate the expressive qualities of music in etudes and solo works will be assessed on a regular basis. The student will be given additional assignments to address any problem areas.
f. The development of the student’s listening skills will be assessed on a regular basis. Discussion of problem areas will occur and suggestions will be made to address these issues.
g. The student will be assessed on the completion of expected public performances.
B. Ensemble Instruction
The goal of ensemble music instruction is to provide students with the opportunity to acquire technical facility and musical interpretation as a group function.
1. Objectives of Ensemble Instruction
a. To learn how to perform musically in an ensemble and to function successfully as a member of that group.
b. To grow and develop as a musical ensemble demonstrating technical facility, musical understanding, and the ability to communicate musically with others.
c. To develop productive rehearsal techniques and preparation.
d. To gain efficient ensemble music reading skills with an understanding of musical terms and symbols.
e. To gain knowledge of the musical styles of the various historical periods.
f. To perform musically, understanding the significance of expression transcending technique.
g. To develop listening skills with attention to matching pitch, articulation and dynamic of other musicians.
h. To successfully perform on concerts demonstrating appropriate concert etiquette and demeanor.
2. Learning Outcomes of Ensemble Instruction
a. Students will demonstrate in rehearsals their musical progress as an ensemble, which will include such elements as technical facility, ensemble sensitivity, and the ability to follow a conductor or leader.
b. The students will demonstrate productive rehearsal techniques in their progressive increased mastery of assigned literature.
c. The students will demonstrate in each rehearsal their improving ensemble music reading skills through their ability to read increasingly more difficult literature.
d. The students will become increasingly more familiar with various styles and periods of music throughout the rehearsals.
e. The students will demonstrate their increased musical understanding of the expressive quality of music throughout the rehearsals of the literature assigned.
f. The students will demonstrate the improvement in their listening skills through their ability to perform in tune, match articulations, play with rhythmic accuracy, appropriate phrasing, and dynamics, and through their responsiveness to the playing of other members of the ensemble.
g. The students will demonstrate appropriate concert etiquette and demeanor during their formal performances.
3. Criteria for the Assessment of Learning Outcomes for Ensemble Instruction
a. The students, as a group, and individually, will be assessed at each rehearsal on their progress toward performing with technical facility, ensemble sensitivity, and the ability to follow a conductor. Suggestions will be made at each rehearsal to address problem areas.
b. The students will be assessed at each rehearsal to determine their progression in mastering the assigned literature and their ability to demonstrate productive rehearsal techniques. Suggestions will be made to address any problem areas.
c. The students will be assessed at each rehearsal on their progress in improving their musical reading ability. They will be given new pieces to sight-read on a regular basis and will be assessed on their ability to do this successfully.
d. At each rehearsal, the students will be assessed on their ability to perform works from various historical periods with stylistic accuracy. Suggestions will be given to address any problem areas.
e. The students will be assessed on their ability to perform music expressively as a group and individually. Any problem areas will be addressed during the rehearsal.
f. The students will be assessed at each rehearsal on their ability to demonstrate their listening skills by playing in tune, matching articulations, playing with rhythmic accuracy, with appropriate dynamics, and being responsive to other members of the ensemble. Suggestions for improvement will be given t each rehearsal.
g. The students will be assessed on their ability to successfully perform the works assigned and rehearsed, in a formal concert.
VI. Senior Project and Comprehensive Examination for Students Concentrating in Music
1. The Senior Project
During the Senior year, each student concentrating in music must elect a terminal project which shall consist of either a research paper in the area of music history and literature, or the preparation of a public recital of representative music literature performed on the student’s major instrument. This project is intended to demonstrate competency in the student’s chosen specialization within the concentration -- music scholarship or performance.
2. The Comprehensive Examination
At the end of the Spring semester of the senior year, all students concentrating in music will take a comprehensive examination in the three instructional areas of the discipline -- music history & literature, music theory & analysis, and performance.
a. Each student shall prepare a written theoretical analysis of a work selected by the faculty which will demonstrate competency in music theory. The assignment of this project will be made four weeks before it is due.
b. Each student will sit for a three-hour examination in music history and literature which will require the identification and placement in historical context of six representative musical examples from the Western tradition The student will be supplied with scores and recordings of the examples.
c. Each student will demonstrate competency in performance in one of two ways; if a senior recital has been given, the grade for that recital shall constitute the performance grade in the comprehensive evaluation. If a recital has not been given, the student’s private instructor will assign a work to be prepared and performed for the music faculty which will demonstrate competency as a performer. The assignment of this work shall be made four weeks before the performance for the faculty.
B. Learning Objectives
Students who have completed the Senior Project and the Comprehensive. Examination satisfactorily shall have demonstrated that they have achieved the objectives outlined in the mission statement for the Music Concentration.
C. Criteria for Assessing Achievement of the Learning Objectives
The criteria for assessing the achievement of the learning objectives of the Senior Project and Comprehensive examination shall be the same as those outlined for each of the component curricular offerings of the music concentration as described in each of the appropriate rubrics found above.
The grade for each of these components will constitute one-third of the total grade for the comprehensive examination.
The grading of the comprehensive evaluation shall be performed by the entire music faculty. Each student’s comprehensive examination performance should satisfactorily meet the assessment criteria of each section of the music curriculum (music history & literature, music theory & analysis, and performance), as described in each of the rubrics for these sections.