Music Theory IV Syllabus for 2021-2022
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Instructor Information

Office Location

MB 306

Office Hours


Course Information

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MUSI-2312-001 Music Theory IV


Corequisite: MUSI 2117

Course Description

Continuation of advanced chromaticism and survey of analytical and compositional procedures in post-tonal music. Optional correlated study at the keyboard.

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Department Expectations

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Notice to Students enrolled in an educational program for preparation of issuance of certain occupational licenses:

Students enrolled in an educational program in preparation for obtaining certain occupational licenses are potentially ineligible for such license if the student has been convicted of an offense. For further information, please contact:

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(3 sch; 3 lec, 1 lab)

Class Type

On Campus Course

Syllabus Information


Clendinning and Marvin:  The Musician's Guide to Theory and Analysis. W. W. Norton, 3rd edition.

Clendinning and Marvin:  The Musician's Guide Workbook. W. W. Norton, 3rd edition.


1. Manuscript paper

2. Pencils

3. Textbooks

4. Additional handouts provided in class

Student Performance

STUDENT PERFORMANCE/LEARNING OUTCOMES: After studying the materials presented in this course of study, the student should be able to do the following:

A. Be able to identify keys, tonality and/or modality by understanding the function of various notes and chords.

B. Be able to identify harmonic treatment in the historical time periods from the Classical period to the Twentieth Century.

C. Gain an understanding of chromatic chords, including Neapolitan 6ths, Augmented 6ths, and altered dominants.

D. Gain an understanding of extended diatonic chords, including 9th, 11th, and 13th chords.

E. Be able to identify and understand the construction of the following musical forms: sonata-allegro, rondo, sonata-rondo, and variation.

Students Rights and Responsibilities

Student Rights and Responsibilities

Log in using the AC Connect Portal

In order to receive your AC Connect Email, you must log in through AC Connect at .

If you are an active staff or faculty member according to Human Resources, use "Exchange". All other students, use "AC Connect (Google) Email".

Expected Student Behavior

1.  Attend all classes

2.  Practice concepts outside of class

3.  Form learning groups with classmates and other students who have taken the class.

The student will be courteous, professional, and respectful when addressing a Professor/Instructor as well as his or her peers.  

The use of cell phones during class time will NOT be permitted under any circumstances.  Likewise, laptop computers and other personal devices should be used only as would generally be considered beneficial to learning and study, with recreational and social use falling well outside these constructs unless specifically allowed by the instructor.  The instructor reserves the right to confiscate any device, electronic or otherwise, should it prove to be a distraction to the student or class in general, and a repeated offense will result in an automatic failing grade for the course.

Students will submit all assignments at the start of the class period on the date due.  The Instructor reserves the right to lower (at a rate of one letter grade per 24 hour period) the grade of any assignment turned in late.  “My computer crashed” is not an acceptable excuse.  Nearly all such “emergencies” can be avoided by planning ahead, starting, and completing work well in advance of the posted due date.  Any request for extension on the due-date of an assignment must be submitted in writing 48 hours in advance of the date in question.

Grading Criteria


Syllabus Quiz 5%

Mid-Term Exam 25%

Final Exam 25%

Research Project 15%

Class Presentation  10%

Class Preparation, Participation, and Quizzes  20%

Attendance is addressed below and will significantly impact grade.  Grade deductions will be applied after all other credit has been calculated. 

Homework is required for in-class discussions.  If homework is not completed on a daily basis, the instructor reserves the right to lower the student’s final grade.

Final Grade is based on the following scale:

A= 90-100%

B= 80-89%

C= 70-79%

D= 60-69%

F= Below 60%


ATTENDANCE POLICY: Regular attendance is necessary for satisfactory achievement; therefore, it is the responsibility of the student to attend class. Any request for excused absence (subject to approval of instructor) must be made at least 48 hours IN ADVANCE of the class period missed, and must include proper written documentation for consideration of the excuse in question (legal documentation confirming absence, such as doctor’s note, court order, funeral program, etc. should be provided at the following class meeting). You will be responsible for completing any in-class assignments IN ADVANCE of the class period missed. NO MORE THAN TWO EXCUSED ABSENCES WILL BE ALLOWED without penalty (unless there is a documented emergency, which will be dealt with on an individual basis).  

Unexcused absences, being late to class, and leaving class early will not be tolerated and will lower your grade.  A minimum subtraction of 1/3 of a letter grade will be deducted for all unexcused absences.  After 6 infractions, the instructor reserves the right to fail the student.

Students are expected to figure the final examination time for this class into their respective schedules.  You are responsible for that time and should treat it as any other class period (prompt and full attendance).  Plan ahead and accordingly. 

All College-related trips must have prior notification sent by the trip’s College Representative (the Professor in most cases), at least one week in advance (7 days).  If this is not done, an unexcused absence will be entered into the grading scheme.


Jan 19  -  Syllabus, Theory readiness assessments, Review

Jan 24 / 26  -  TBD  |  TBD

Jan 31 / Feb 2  -  TBD  |  CENSUS DAY (Sophomore Theory readiness assessments due ahead)

Feb 7  -  Composition Overview, etc.

Feb 9  -  NO CLASS     [ TMEA trip ]

Feb 14 / 16  -  TBD  |  TBD

Feb 21 / 23  -  TBD  |  TBD

Feb 28 / Mar 2  -  TBD  |  TBD

Mar 7 / 9  -  Midterm Review  |  MIDTERM EXAM

Mar 14 - 18  -  NO CLASS   [ Spring break ]

Mar 21 / 23  -  TBD  |  Composition Meeting: Round 1

Mar 28 / 30  -  TBD  |  TBD

Apr 4 / 6  -  TBD  |  TBD

Apr 11 / 13  -  TBD  |  TBD

Apr 18 / 20  -  TBD  |  TBD  [ Greeley Jazz Festival week ]

Apr 25 / 27  -  Composition Meeting: Round 2  TBD   

May 2 / 4  -  Composition Presentations   Final Review

May 11  -  FINAL EXAM from 9:00-11:00am (subject to change)

This course outline is a rough estimate for the material in this semester’s course.  The Instructor reserves the right to alter this course outline in order to best facilitate the course.

Additional Information

REQUIRED EXAMINATIONS: There will be two major exams (Mid-Term and Final Exam) and occasional quizzes. The Final Exam will be held on the day and time found in the Amarillo College schedule of classes and will be comprehensive, as Music Theory builds on itself.


COMPOSITION PROJECT: Students will compose, notate, analyze, describe, and present a short musical work in the macro-form of "Theme and Variations."  The theme may or may not be original, but all variations must be derived in some way from the material presented in the theme.  No fewer than four (4) variations will be written, not including the theme.  Each variation will be approximately 1-2 pages (15-50 measures, 30-120 seconds) and will be composed using a different compositional technique or recognized musical form that has been encountered in the Advanced Theory sequence.  One group meeting and one individual meeting with the instructor will be held to discuss the student’s composition project and presentation preparations.  All project material must be submitted by the due date.  

The following additional compositional guidelines must be met:

- At least three (3) major musical periods must be represented in the student's choice of forms/techniques.

- The composition will be written either for piano, SATB choir, or other instrumentation approved by instructor.

- The composition will explore multiple key areas and/or modes and will incorporate both traditional and non-traditional harmony.

- The composition will be cleanly notated using Finale (or other music notation software previously approved by instructor), and each page will be well-formatted.

- Each variation will have its own title and tempo indication, and measures will be numbered.  

- The work as a whole will have a single title (traditional or creative), which will be included at the top of the Theme.  

The following guidelines for submission and presentation must be met:

- The score will be submitted to the instructor as a Finale (or other, as approved) file, as well as in pdf AND hard-copy format at the start of the class on the due date.

- Each movement (including the theme and each variation) will be analyzed by the student on the printed copy of the score.

- A short but detailed description (3-4 pages) of the techniques used in writing each variation will be provided in pdf and hard-copy format along with the score itself.  

- The student will present his or her final composition in class and will arrange for excerpts of the work to be performed by colleagues or faculty (or electronically) as part of that presentation.  The student should provide hard copies of the entire work to his or her classmates, or alternatively may use the projector to show the score to the class.  The student will describe the composition as it stands, explain his or her compositional process and decision-making, and leave time for questions from the classroom.  

Failure to adhere to these instructions will result in an automatic loss of one letter grade per item.


ACADEMIC INTEGRITY: Plagiarism and/or cheating on any level will not be tolerated (you will fail). Textbooks or notes cannot be used for examinations, and all work submitted is given to the Instructor with the assertion that the work (research, etc.) was completed by the student herself or himself.  Please always ask if you are at all unclear regarding proper use of information or resources in a given situation.  We are here to help each other, but stealing another’s ideas is absolutely unacceptable and will be dealt with accordingly.

QUESTIONS: This syllabus is only an outline of the course of study. If you should have any questions regarding any of the topics mentioned above, I will be happy to discuss them with you. No question is unimportant, and I look forward to working with you. Have a great semester!

DISCLAIMER: The instructor reserves the right to alter the syllabus based on the instructor's continuing evaluation of the course and class progress.  Students will be alerted to changes made.



Students are required to satisfactorily complete all sophomore theory / ear readiness assessments PRIOR TO the census date for the corresponding class.  A student will not be required to re-take an assessment passed for a previous class (e.g. Level III classes).  A student may be asked to withdraw from class if satisfactory demonstration of fundamental skills is not demonstrated by the deadline listed above.  Each student is responsible to arrange alternate testing times with the instructor if assessments are not passed in class.


MUSIC THEORY TUTORING POLICY for sophomore theory and ear training classes: 

Tutoring is available to all music students and recommended for consistent use throughout each week for assignment preparation and review of materials.  Any student who fails to adequately complete 2 or more homework assignments by the stated due date, scores below a 50% on a quiz, or scores below an 80% on a unit test or midterm exam, will be required to attend a minimum of 1 hour of tutoring per week for the remainder of the term (2 hours weekly recommended).  Any student who does not demonstrate fulfillment of this course requirement (or equivalent, as determined by the instructor) will not be permitted to take subsequent examinations. 


Office Hours policy:

Office hours are posted outside MB 306, or available by appointment (email

Syllabus Created on:

01/17/22 11:17 AM

Last Edited on:

08/29/22 4:18 PM