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MUSIC 1DA3 Practical Musicianship I

Academic Year: Fall 2017

Term: Fall

Day/Evening: D

Instructor: Dr. Andrew Mitchell

Email: amitche@mcmaster.ca

Office: Togo Salmon Hall 433

Phone: 905-525-9140 x 24217


Office Hours: by appointment

Course Objectives:

In this course students will develop basic musicianship skills including ear training, sight singing, dictation and keyboard harmony. Class time will be devoted to completing exercises preparing students for regular tests throughout the term.


Textbooks, Materials & Fees:

Paul Murphy et al. The Musicians Guide to Aural Skills: Sight Singing, 3rd Edition.  New York: W.W. Norton and Company, 2016.

___________.  The Musicians Guide to Aural Skills: Ear Training, 3rd Edition. New York: W.W. Norton and Company, 2016.  This book contains access to online resources.

Students need to bring pencils and their books to class.

Recommended Resource for Practice: MacGamut.  https://www.macgamut.com


Method of Assessment:

15 Tests (5 percent each) = 75%

Test Dates: Sept 14, 18, 19, 28, Oct 2, 3, 19, 23, 24, Nov 6, 7, 16, 20, 21, 27, 30, Dec 5 

Class Participation = 25%

N.B. Students will have received at least 10% of their final grade by Nov 10, 2017.

Policy on Missed Work, Extensions, and Late Penalties:

There will actually be 18 tests in the course, but the three lowest grades (including zeros) will be dropped from the final grade calculation, regardless of which type of test the three lowest grades are.  Missed tests will be given a grade of zero.  Because of the number of assessments in the course and the amount of class time available, missed tests (for whatever reason) will not be rescheduled. 

Because this course is focused on skill development, it is crucial that students attend class and participate.  The percentage of classes missed will be subtracted from the participation grade.  Participation will be graded both on enthusiasm and willingness of students to volunteer for demonstrations.

Please Note the Following Policies and Statements:

Academic Dishonesty

You are expected to exhibit honesty and use ethical behaviour in all aspects of the learning process. Academic credentials you earn are rooted in principles of honesty and academic integrity.

Academic dishonesty is to knowingly act or fail to act in a way that results or could result in unearned academic credit or advantage. This behaviour can result in serious consequences, e.g. the grade of zero on an assignment, loss of credit with a notation on the transcript (notation reads: "Grade of F assigned for academic dishonesty"), and/or suspension or expulsion from the university.

It is your responsibility to understand what constitutes academic dishonesty. For information on the various types of academic dishonesty please refer to the Academic Integrity Policy, located at www.mcmaster.ca/academicintegrity

The following illustrates only three forms of academic dishonesty:

  1. Plagiarism, e.g. the submission of work that is not one’s own or for which other credit has been obtained.
  2. Improper collaboration in group work.
  3. Copying or using unauthorized aids in tests and examinations.

Email correspondence policy

It is the policy of the Faculty of Humanities that all email communication sent from students to instructors (including TAs), and from students to staff, must originate from each student’s own McMaster University email account. This policy protects confidentiality and confirms the identity of the student.  Instructors will delete emails that do not originate from a McMaster email account.

Modification of course outlines

The University reserves the right to change dates and/or deadlines etc. for any or all courses in the case of an emergency situation or labour disruption or civil unrest/disobedience, etc. If a modification becomes necessary, reasonable notice and communication with the students will be given with an explanation and the opportunity to comment on changes. Any significant changes should be made in consultation with the Department Chair.

McMaster Student Absence Form (MSAF)

In the event of an absence for medical or other reasons, students should review and follow the Academic Regulation in the Undergraduate Calendar Requests for Relief for Missed Academic Term Work. Please note these regulations have changed beginning Fall 2015. You can find information at mcmaster.ca/msaf/. If you have any questions about the MSAF, please contact your Associate Dean's office.

Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities

Students who require academic accommodation must contact Student Accessibility Services (SAS) to make arrangements with a Program Coordinator. Academic accommodations must be arranged for each term of study. Student Accessibility Services can be contacted by phone 905-525-9140 ext. 28652 or e-mail sas@mcmaster.ca. For further information, consult McMaster University's Policy for Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities.

Academic Accommodation for Religious, Indigenous and Spiritual Observances

Students requiring academic accommodation based on religion and spiritual observances should follow the procedures set out in the Course Calendar or by their respective Faculty. In most cases, the student should contact his or her professor or academic advisor as soon as possible to arrange accommodations for classes, assignments, tests and examinations that might be affected by a religious holiday or spiritual observance.

Topics and Readings:


Textbook Chapters


Week 1

Sept 5, 7

Ear Training Chapter 1

Sight Singing Chapter 1

Keyboard Lesson 1


Week 2

Sept 11, 12, 14

Ear Training Chapter 2

Sight Singing Chapter 2

Keyboard Lesson 2

Thurs Sept 14 Dictation Test 1

Week 3

Sept 18, 19, 21

Ear Training Chapter 3

Sight Singing Chapter 3 Keyboard Lesson 3

Mon Sept 18 Sight Singing Test 1

Tues Sept 19 Keyboard Test 1

Week 4

Sept 25, 26, 28

Ear Training Chapter 4

Sight Singing Chapter 4

Keyboard Lesson 4

Thurs Sept 28 Dictation Test 2

Week 5

Oct 2, 3, 5

Ear Training Chapter 5

Sight Singing Chapter 5

Keyboard Lesson 5

Mon Oct 2 Sight Singing Test 2

Tues Oct 3 Keyboard Test 2




Week 6

Oct 16, 17, 19

Ear Training Chapter 6

Sight Singing Chapter 6

Keyboard Lesson 6

Thurs Oct 19 Dictation Test 3

Week 7

Oct 23, 24, 26

Ear Training Chapter 7

Sight Singing Chapter 7

Keyboard Lesson 7

Mon Oct 23 Sight Singing Test 3

Tues Oct 24 Keyboard Test 3

Week 8

Oct 30, 31, Nov 2

Ear Training Chapter 8

Sight Singing Chapter 8

Keyboard Lesson 8

Thurs Nov 2 Dictation Test 4

Week 9

Nov 6, 7, 9

Ear Training Chapter 9

Sight Singing Chapter 9

Keyboard Lesson 9

Mon Nov 6 Sight Singing Test 4

Tues Nov 7 Keyboard Test 4

Week 10

Nov 13, 14, 16

Ear Training Chapter 10

Sight Singing Chapter 10

Keyboard Lesson 10

Thurs Nov 16 Dictation Test 5

Week 11

Nov 20, 21, 23

Ear Training Chapter 11

Sight Singing Chapter 11

Keyboard Lesson 11

Mon Nov 20 Sight Singing Test 5

Tues Nov 21 Keyboard Test 5

Week 12

Nov 27, 28, 30

Ear Training Chapter 12

Sight Singing Chapter 12

Keyboard Lesson 12

Mon Nov 27 Dictation Test 6

Thurs Nov 30 Sight Singing Test 6

Week 13

Dec 4,5

Ear Training Chapter 13

Sight Singing Chapter 13

Keyboard Lesson 13

Tues Dec 5 Keyboard Test 6