UNDERGRADUATE
MUSI1023 Materials and Structures of Music
Course Type: core/compulsory for music majors, free elective for others
Prerequisite: Completion of an aptitude test held at the first lecture with a passing score. The score will also determine which Session a student will be enrolled to.
Instructors: Dr. Daniel LO (Session 1A), Dr. Charles Kwong (Session 1B)
Semester: First Semester 2021/22
Time: 1:30pm-3:20pm, Thursday
Venue: CPD-LG1.22 Rehearsal Room (Session 1A), CRT-11/01 Seminar Room (Session 1B)
This course develops students’ conceptual and perceptual understanding of the basic materials and structures of music, including rhythm and meter, intervals and scales, modes and keys, as well as melody, harmony, and simple forms. The course integrates ear training with the analysis of a wide array of musical examples. Students completing this course are expected to have established a clear and solid understanding of the rudiments of music, and be able to make practical demonstrations of this knowledge. The course will serve as a thorough review of aural and theoretical skills necessary for those intending to major or minor in music. It is also available as an elective to students in other departments who seek a solid foundation in music fundamentals.
Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to:
  • demonstrate a conceptual and perceptual understanding of the basic materials and structures of music, including rhythm and meter, intervals and scales, modes and keys, as well as melody, harmony, and contrapuntal practices;
  • apply their knowledge about materials and structures of music to analysing and interpreting musical excerpts.
SESSION 1A (for non-majors or minors):
5 Worksheet Assignments 50%
Midterm Test 15%
Final Test 25%
Attendance and Participation (lectures and tutorials) 10%

SESSION 1B (for majors):
3 Worksheet Assignments 30%
Project/Final Assignment 20%
Midterm Test 15%
Final Test 25%
Attendance and Participation (lectures and tutorials) 10%
  • scales and modes
  • rhythm and meter
  • harmony: triads and seventh chords
  • harmonic progression and principles of voice leading
  • cadences
  • non-chord tones
  • melody, phrase structure and motives
  • period, simple forms and textures
  • Clendinning, Jane Piper, and Elizabeth West Marvin. The Musician's Guide to Theory and Analysis. New York: W.W. Norton, 2005.
  • Gauldin, Robert. Harmonic Practice in Tonal Music. New York: W.W. Norton, 2004.
  • Kostka, Stefan M., and Dorothy Payne. Tonal Harmony: With an Introduction to Twentieth-century Music. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2009.
  • Laitz, Steven. The Complete Musician: An Integrated Approach to Tonal Theory, Analysis, and Listening. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012.
  • Turek, Ralph. The Elements of Music: Concepts and Applications. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1996.
  • Turek, Ralph, and Daniel McCarthy. Theory for Today’s Musician. New York: Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group, 2014.
  • Wade, Bonnie. Thinking Musically: Experiencing Music, Expressing Culture. New York: Oxford University Press, 2009.