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Foundations of Music Theory



Full course description


This course is designed for upper-division undergraduates and new graduate students in music theory. After completing this course, students should have a strong understanding of common notation, the physics behind music theory, as well as the basic concepts of music theory and a few slightly advanced but useful topics, such as transposition.


Each week you will be expected to review all sections of the corresponding course Module. Every week you are required to take a quiz specifically on the readings for the week. Quizzes are not timed and questions may be randomized. You have 3 attempts for each quiz; the highest score out of the attempts will be counted.

In this course you will learn to:

  • Demonstrate the use of key signatures, meter, simple diatonic harmony, and historically traditional styles of music
  • Demonstrate the use of chromatic harmony nonharmonic tones, compound meters and modulation
  • Use the keyboard to realize common scales, triads and chord progressions
  • Demonstrate the ability to identify common rhythms, harmonies and melodies by listening to them
  • Demonstrate a knowledge of the physical attributes of sound (acoustics)
  • Explain and demonstrate the commonly accepted principles of twentieth-century musical techniques
  • Arrange and transpose music appropriate for classroom and performance needs


Basic Music Theory by Jonathan Harnum.
This book is available online as a free PDF here.

Sign up for this course today.