Tarleton State University

Music Appreciation

MUSC 313


Dr. Vicky V. Johnson





  Syllabus    Discussion Info    Assignment Submission   Exam Info    Links   



COURSE OUTLINE:  Online Summer Session


Week #

Week Dates

All are Mon - Sun

Topic for Study


Due @ midnight


Due @ midnight



June 8 - June 14

Appreciating Music


no grade

Post: Fri Jun 12

Assignment 1

Sunday Jun 14

Exam info


June 15 - June 21

Appreciating the Human Experience

Discussion 1

Post: Fri Jun 19

Resp.: Sun Jun 21

Assignment 2

Sunday Jun 21

Unit 1:

Sunday Jun 21


June 22 - June 28

Appreciating the Performance

Discussion 2

Post: Fri Jun 26

Resp.: Sun Jun 28

Assignment 3

Sunday Jun 28

Unit 2:

Sunday Jun 28


June 29 - July 5

Appreciating Human Expression

Discussion 3

Post: Fri Jul 3

Resp.: Sun Jul 5

Assignment 4

Sunday July 5

Unit 3:

Sunday Jul 5


July 6 - 8

(last class day)






Note:   This is an organic document!  It will change. 

You are responsible for what is on this page, not a copy you made at the beginning of the semester.




Week 1

Greetings online students!  

Welcome to Week 1.  On this course outline page, you will find links to the lectures for each week, as well as any general announcements to the class.

Please review this Pre-course Information

Take a look at the Music Appreciation Syllabus

Note:  Please use the Ask Dr. J discussion forum for all questions unless they are only specific to you. 

For example, if you are having trouble zipping a file, how to submit assignments, problems with accessing digital formats, etc., Ask Dr. J.  Otherwise, I end up answering the same questions over and over if individual emails are sent.  Feel free to use email for personal issues.  When I log in, I check the Ask Dr. J first anyway!

On this Course Outline page, you will find links to the lecture for each week, as well as any general announcements to the class.  The animated bullets to the right will designate "action" items, so be sure you accomplish these each week.  Now, click in to the first lecture, and let's get started!

Appreciating Music


Intro to Music Appreciation




Blackboard/Computer configuration

  1. Click on "My Blackboard" (upper right of your screen) to go back to the first screen.  Click on "Check Browser" and follow the instructions.

  2. Follow this link to familiarize yourself with the Blackboard interface.


Forwarding Blackboard e-mail messages

You can have your class messages forwarded to the email address that you check most often.  In Blackboard:

  1. Choose your course

  2. Click “My Settings” in the upper right portion of the screen.

  3. Select “My profile” tab and edit the profile to include the email address you check most frequently.

  4. Click Save.

  5. Now click on “My Tool Option” tab and scroll to the Mail portion of the screen.

  6. Select the box “Forward all mail messages to the e-mail address in my profile.” 

  7. Click Save.


Please read these instructions about the Discussions



Discussion:  Introductions


In the discussion forum, please introduce yourself to your online classmates.  Include any personal information that would help us to get to know you; for example, your major, future career plans, home town, family info, etc.  Also, tell us what your favorite type of music is and what influences have caused that to be so.  Did you grow up with that kind of music, were you more influenced by your friends, or do you just march to a different drummer?  Last of all, please give an overview of your experiences as a musician.  Did you take piano lessons, play in the band, join a church choir, sing in the shower?  Don't be modest.  I promise I won't ask you to perform!

After writing your answer in the discussion forum, feel free to respond to your classmates' posts in order to get to know them a little better.  This discussion question will not be graded, but try to post your introduction by Friday so others can respond if they wish.




pp. 1-16


Week 2

Discussions are a very important part of this online learning experience.  If you have not done so already, please read the Discussion Info.  Your participation in this forum constitutes 25% of your grade.  There are specific criteria required in order to receive full credit each week.  This is not just an informal chat.  Be sure you know what is expected!


Appreciating the Human Experience


Music for Religion

Music for Mourning



pp. 17-39, 111-125, 127-145

Note:  We cover a lot of reading material in the class, so the reading assignments each week are long (you only have 4 weeks to read it all!).  Please note, however, that the lectures do not include all questions found on the exams, so skip the reading at your own risk!








Week 3

Music for Celebration, Inspiration, and Commemoration





p. 41-62, 147-182, 183-203






Week 4

Appreciating the Performance


Music on the Stage

Music in the Concert Hall













Write your own blues song

Compose your own blues song.    You do not have to write the music, but the words only.  Your song should have at least 3 verses (one verse would be 3 lines long as in the example on the bottom of p. 58).  Choose your own topic - perhaps too much rain, or your part-time job, or online college classes can give you inspiration! Put your blues song in the form of a Word document for submission and name the file Assignment3_YourName.doc These will be published for your classmates to see after the deadline (which is again Sunday midnight). 


Week 5

Music in the Movies and Television







Week 6

Appreciating Human Expression


Music Expressed in Song







Week 7

Music Expressed in Dance

Music Expressed in Improvisation







Week 8


 Final exam will consist of:

  1. Multiple choice questions from text material

  2. Listening questions (Listening list is below)






Wednesday (last class day)




Discussion Info

Requirements and deadlines:  You will have a discussion question each week.  You should post an answer to the question by Friday at midnight.  At least two additional posts (responses to other students' posts) are due by Sunday at midnight.  Points will be deducted from the week's discussion grade if posted late.  Be aware that doing the bare minimum will not earn an "A."

NOTE:  You should read all posts, not just the ones to which you intend to respond.  Blackboard logs all activity and I am aware if you only read 2 posts in a discussion.

Answer the question entirely, not just one thought.  Don't just paraphrase something in the lecture - do some thinking, reading on your own.  It doesn't have to be a long answer, but it should not consist of a single point.  It should also not be a simple yes or no answer, even if you put the word "definitely" in front of it.


In responding to others' answers, feel free to ask them for clarification or for further information to justify their answers.  "I agree" is not a discussion.  Neither is a paraphrase of their post.  Your response should add something to the original post, ask, or answer a question.  Ask questions like "I wonder why . . .," "Why is it that . . . ," "Do you think . . . ," to encourage others to delve deeper into the subject.  Be aware, however, that if your question is not answered, no discussion has happened, so don't leave an unanswered question as one of your only two responses.   Remember that chit chat responses ("I saw you at the movies last night," etc.) will not be counted toward the response post requirement.  As a matter of fact, those belong in the Water cooler!

Also, you are welcome to respond to as many posts as you like, but again, with something of substance, not just a "me, too!" answer.  I am suspect of any answer that begins with "I agree . . . "


Please write in complete sentences and use correct punctuation, capitalization, etc.  We do become accustomed to shorthand in e-mails and text messages, but you should be able to communicate in a more formal manner also, and this is a good forum in which to practice.  You will be graded on this as a writing assignment, both on content and form.


Please begin your response posts with the person's name to whom you are responding.  Some of the threads go back and forth between people and when read in compiled format, become very confusing.


These submissions are time and date stamped, so don't miss the deadlines.   I read all of your posts in context, in the discussion forum.  However, when I grade them in Blackboard, I am looking at only your posts, so keep that in mind when you judge your own participation.


Ask Dr. J:  Think of this as raising your hand in class.  This is for clarification or problems that others might be having, as well.  However, please be conscientious to check the course outline and your email, as well as reading the other "Ask Dr. J" posts before asking questions so as not to duplicate, as that wastes others' time to read through and my time to answer.  Also, please don't send the same question through "Ask Dr. J" and email for the same reason.  I do appreciate receiving posts when links are missing, or other errors so I can correct them quickly.




Performance Indicators






Original Post

No original post

Incomplete answer

Minimal answer; mostly opinion

Complete answer showing knowledge of reading material

Insightful answer well supported by reading material


0 points

35 points

40 points

45 points

50 points


No responses including “I agree” responses with no new information

One response missing or one response is an “I agree” response with no new information

Minimal responses  with very little new information

2 complete responses that include new information

More than 2 responses that include new information


0 points

21 points

24 points

27 points

30 points

Peer Review

No ratings given

1-2 ratings given

3-4 ratings given

5-6 ratings given

More than 6 ratings given


0 points

7 points

8 points

9 points

10 points

Posts Read

includes responses

No posts read

Less than 5 read

Less than 10 read

More than half read

All posts read


0 points

7 points

8 points

9 points

10 points

 Writing form

 Posts unavailable to grade writing form

Multiple errors in punctuation, capitalization, grammar, and sentence form

 Several errors in punctuation, capitalization, grammar, and sentence form

Minimal errors in punctuation, capitalization, grammar, and sentence form

Correct punctuation, capitalization, grammar, and sentence form


0 points

7 points

8 points

9 points

10 points


Total points








Each exam will be available within a two-hour window of time, from 8:00pm to 10:00pm on the test days.  The exams will only be available during the specified times. Each exam should take about 30-40 minutes.  You will have one hour from the time you begin the exam to finish it. 


Each exam will consist of two parts:  1) multiple choice questions based upon the lectures, reading, and other links, and 2) identification of songs from your listening list.  There is a complete list of the audio excerpts on your Study Guide.


In order to do the listening portion of the exams, you must print out the Listening List.  The answers to the listening questions will be the numbers assigned to the songs on that page (without a period after the number).  Do NOT try to type in the name of the song.


Each time you answer a  listening question, a media player will play a song excerpt.  Behind the media player will be a white screen.  You will have to close that screen as well as the media player screen to get back to your test questions.


IMPORTANT! Before you begin your exam, please turn OFF your pop-up blocker(s).


You will need Windows Media Player installed on your computer in order to listen to the audio clips. Go to http://www.microsoft.com/windows/windowsmedia/player/10/default.aspx  to download Windows Media Player.


Do not try to take the exam using dial-up as it will take too long to load the audio files and you might not have time to finish the test.


Click on the "Save" button after every question, not just at the end.  This will ensure that your answers are recorded.


If your computer freezes during the exam, just log back in, and click on 'Continue Assessment' and it will pick you up right where you left off.


Some of the test questions will have more than one correct answer.  Here's an example:


Mickey Mouse is

A.  a Disney character

B.  a cartoon

C.  a character on Law & Order


The correct answer would be to select both "A" and "B".  If you select only "A" you would receive half credit on that particular question.  Always be aware of the possibility of multiple answers and select all that apply.


On every exam, there will be questions that are not covered in the lecture or study guide and that you will only recognize if you have read the material in your textbook.  So, keep up with the reading.  It will be worth your while.


Only in case of "excused absence" will you be able to make up an exam.  These instances will require written documentation (something from a healthcare provider, for example).  Missing an exam because of work or personal conflicts does not qualify as an excused absence.  The exams are scheduled at the beginning of the semester.  Please make sure that you make arrangements.


Assignment Submission


Submit assignments as  Word documents unless specified otherwise. 


Save the document as Assignment1_YourName.doc (substituting the correct week and correct assignment number and using your own name :-)


Use a heading at the top of the page which includes your name and the assignment number. Use a heading on every assignment you submit.


Upload the Word document in the assignment section as an attachment.  Do NOT send your assignment to me via e-mail.  If you can't submit it, contact me and I will reset the submission.


Occasionally your assignments may be returned to you for a redo.  Make your corrections and resubmit through the Assignment section as before.  If I send it back to you, I will not count it late even though Blackboard automatically marks it "Late" in the Assignment section.  If your original submission is late, you will be penalized 10% of the point value.




 It is very important that you name your file according to the instructions above.  Otherwise, I have to rename each file.  So please take a moment to rename the file before submission if you do not name it as above originally.





Created and maintained by Vicky V. Johnson