Print Version

Effective: Fall 2012

Grade Type: Letter Grade, the student may select Pass/No Pass
Not Repeatable.
FHGE: Humanities Transferable: CSU/UC
4 hours lecture, 1 hour laboratory. (60 hours total per quarter)

Student Learning Outcomes -
  • A successful student will explain how music is a reflection of the historical, sociological, religious, and political circumstances that surround it.
  • A successful student will demonstrate a basic knowledge of the structural building blocks of music.
  • A successful student will be able to hear differences in the different musical styles in Western music.
Description -
A study of Western music and its place in civilization. Selected listening and readings from the masterpieces of music of Europe and the Western Hemisphere with an emphasis on methods of comprehension, listening techniques, the elements of music, primary musical forms, and a wide range of concert repertoire. Includes a study of how social, political, philosophical, and other artistic developments outside of music influenced compositional thinking and how these were integrated into the different periods of Western musical history. A variety of media consisting of slides, videos, recordings, and lecture will be used. Live performance used when possible.

Course Objectives -
The student will be able to:
  1. identify the basic elements of western music i.e. pitch, rhythm, harmony, style and form.
  2. discuss musical instruments and their functions.
  3. distinguish between various types of music in the Western world.
  4. attend one live concert making observations of and listening for musical styles, characteristics and forms discussed in class.
  5. write objectively and intelligently about significant musical experiences.
  6. describe similarities and differences between classical music forms and other diverse forms of pop music such as rock, reggae, etc.
  7. understand the different effects that social, political, philosophical, and religious thinking had on artistic expression with particular emphasis on music.
  8. write and critique and assigned music video and/or film.
Special Facilities and/or Equipment -
  1. when taught on campus: access to a cassette player; classroom sound equipment for compact discs, audiotape and records, screen, overhead projector, slide projector, VCR.
  2. when taught via Foothill Global Access: on-going access to computer with Email software and capabilities; Email address; Java-script enabled internet browsing software.

Course Content (Body of knowledge) -
  1. Study of fundamentals
    1. Elements - melody, rhythm, dynamics, instrument color, texture, form, style, harmony.
    2. Description of music instruments
    3. Emotional effect of music
    4. Purpose of music and its place in culture
  2. Study of western music to the present time.
    1. Composers of Europe and America
    2. Forms and styles in western music
    3. Opera, oratorio, symphony orchestra, chamber orchestra, chorus, wind ensemble, chamber music ensembles
  3. Identification of non-musical trends, artistic styles, or concepts that had a major effect on Western music development.
    1. Absolute Monarchy
    2. 18th century Enlightenment
    3. 19th century literature
    4. Impressionism in painting vis a vis late 19th century music
    5. Expressionism in painting vis a vis early 20th century music
  4. Live concert experience
    1. Attend one concert
    2. Write concert summary using prescribed format and guidelines
Methods of Evaluation -
  1. Completion of writing assignments
    1. worksheets for guided reading and listening
    2. concert report
    3. supervised lab work/video critique/instruments of the orchestra
  2. Exams (eight exams and one Final Exam)
Representative Text(s) -
Kerman, Joseph Listen, 7th ed. New York, Worth Publishers, 2011.

When taught via Foothill Global Access: supplemental lectures, handouts, tests, and assignments delivered via Email; feedback on tests and assignments delivered via Email; class discussion may be delivered in chat rooms, list-serves, and newsgroup.

Disciplines -
Method of Instruction -
Lecture, Laboratory.
Lab Content -
Laboratory Exercises: Weekly lab exercises consisting of group activities such as listening, video critique, distinguishing different instruments from the orchestra. These cover and supplement assigned reading and lecture topics.
Types and/or Examples of Required Reading, Writing and Outside of Class Assignments -
  1. Reading Assignments: Weekly reading assignments from text, online curriculum, lab manual, and outside sources ranging from 40 to 60 pages per week.
  2. Lecture: Weekly lecture covering subject matter from text assignment with extended topic information.
  3. In class writing assignments based on assigned topics from lecture.
  4. Concert report