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Contemporary Music Theory

Tarleton State University

Instructor:  Dr. Vicky V. Johnson  vjohnson@tarleton.edu   254/968-9238


MUSC 3249  Syllabus


For week by week description of requirements, assignments, and exams, refer to the Course Outline at the following link:





Course Description




A study of scales, chords, key centers, set-theory, polytonality, sound mass, electronic and computer techniques in analysis and writing.




Required Texts and Materials




Stefan Kostka.  Materials and Techniques of Twentieth-Century Music, (4th  ed.)



Music staff paper:  Go here  to print staff paper with keyboard and here for various other configurations.



Notebook:  it will not be graded, but returned assignments will be your exam study materials, and if a grade fails to be posted or is posted incorrectly, you will have the hard copy for verification of the grade



Pencil and eraser:  I will not accept any assignment written in ink.  Mechanical pencils are a good choice. 



Bring these materials to every class session.


Note:  You MUST have access to a computer for receiving e-mails, checking the Course Outline, receiving assignments, downloading and uploading assignments, and to score student compositions.    There are computers available in the Fine Arts building and in the library, open at scheduled times, but it is your responsibility to access these course elements as necessary.  Your failure to do so is not an excuse for late or missed assignments, or for missing course updates or other communication.


Course Work Includes




In-class lectures, discussions and analyses



Written assignments, including student composition



Individual work on computer programs








All homework assignments are due at the start of class on the due date specified in the Course Outline. Specific instructions for assignments will often be listed in the Course Outline which will be updated on the course web page.  It is important to refer to this page often.  Any modifications to the schedule will be announced in class or posted on the Course Outline.



Late assignments will only be accepted with prior approval and then at a penalty of ten points per calendar day.




Grading Will Be Based On




Class assignments, including compositions 55%



Midterm exam 15%



Final exam 20%



Class participation 10%




Beginning in Fall 2015, Tarleton will begin differentiating between a failed grade in a class because a student never attended (F0 grade), stopped attending at some point in the semester (FX grade), or because the student did not pass the course (F) but attended the entire semester. These grades will be noted on the official transcript. Stopping or never attending class can result in the student having to return aid monies received.  For more information see the Tarleton Financial Aid website.




Attendance Policy




Attendance is required. Absences will only be excused with proper written documentation on letterhead. This includes a note from a healthcare provider in case of illness or a form signed by a sponsor (presented in advance) in the case of a University sanctioned activity.  Attendance at funerals and court appearances will also be excused with proper documentation.



Attendance will be documented and class will begin on time.  It is the student's responsibility to remain after class and request that the absence marked in the gradebook be changed to a tardy.  Use this link to set your watch.



A student's absences will not change any deadline or assignment requirements.  You are always responsible for any material you miss, so check the Course Outline and/or a fellow classmate for announcements, assignments, and requirements.


Classroom Policy




No food or drink in the classroom.



Turn off your cell phones and put them out of sight - mine and yours.  Text messaging is prohibited in the classroom.  Please see me if you have a special emergency situation requiring this type of communication.



Attention will be given to the lesson at hand, or you will be excused from the classroom.  (In other words, no working on other homework, personal business, sleeping, etc.)



Keep your backpacks and other personal belongings out of the aisles.



Do not leave the room during class except for emergency as this disruption is almost always (except for an emergency) avoidable. 



If your conduct for any reason is unacceptable, you will be asked to leave.  Do not return to class until you have made an appointment to see me and the situation has been resolved.


Academic Conduct

Cheating, plagiarism (submitting another person's materials or ideas as one's own), or doing work for another person who will receive academic credit are all impermissible.  This includes the use of unauthorized books, notebooks, or other sources in order to secure or give help during an examination; the unauthorized copying of examinations, assignments, reports, or term papers, or the presentation of unacknowledged material as if it were the student's own work.

Any student caught cheating will automatically receive a grade of "F" for the class.  The student will be reported to the Judicial Affairs Office and the infraction will be placed in the student's permanent file.  Further disciplinary action may also be brought against the student.  Cheating is serious business and the penalties for engaging in this sort of activity will be severe. 


Students With Disabilities Policy

It is the policy of Tarleton State University to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act and other applicable laws. If you are a student with a disability seeking accommodations for this course, please contact the Center for Access and Academic Testing at 254.968.9400 or caat@tarleton.edu. The office is located in Math 201. More information can be found at www.tarleton.edu/caat, in the University Catalog, or at www.ada.gov.


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Created and Maintained by Vicky V. Johnson