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Criteria for Musicianship Placement

Requirements for placing into 52A

Eligibility for placement in 52A will be determined by consideration of the following criteria as demonstrated in the student’s performance on the Musicianship Placement Test:

1). Mastery of written music theory fundamentals (key signatures, major and minor scales, diatonic intervals and primary triads in context, rhythm, tempo and conducting patterns in simple and compound meters).

This will be given as a very short timed exam in which questions about the previous must be answered within approximately 15-20 seconds per question.

Please note: If you do not know all of the above material very well, you will not place into 52A!

2). Ability to sing at sight (without the aid of an instrument) with correct movable-do solfege, accurate relative pitch relationships, good rhythm and steady tempo a diatonic melody in any key while conducting.

3). Ability to recognize aurally the following:

  • Relative diatonic pitch intervals up to an octave;
  • Melodic contour; AND
  • Basic metric patterning

4). A reasonable level of accomplishment as a vocal and/or instrumental performer.

Requirements for placing into 52B

All 52A requirements, plus:

1). Ability to sing at sight (without the aid of an instrument) with correct movable-do solfege, accurate relative pitch relationships, good rhythm and steady tempo a melody in any minor key (with possible chromatic inflections in the upper tetrachord) while conducting.

2). At sight, ability to sing and play at the keyboard an example featuring two independent melodic parts (such as singing the soprano part of a Bach chorale while playing the bass at the piano).

3). Correctly notate from scratch meter, rhythm and pitch elements of a one or two part diatonic major or minor (with chromatic inflections in the upper tetrachord) example played at the piano.

4). A high level of accomplishment as a vocal and/or instrumental performer

Requirements for placing into 152A

All 52A and 52B requirements, plus:

1). Ability to sing at sight (without the aid of an instrument) with correct movable-do solfege, accurate relative pitch relationships, good rhythm and steady tempo a highly chromatic melody featuring changing key centers while conducting.

2). Notate from scratch meter, rhythm and pitch elements of a highly chromatic keyboard excerpt, including a roman numeral analysis of all harmonic structures.

3). A remarkably high level of accomplishment as a vocal and/or instrumental performer.

Exam Preparation

The Musicianship Placement Exam is a two-part (individual audition and written/listening exam) test to ensure that student begin in a course most appropriate for their skill level. It is not necessary for students to study extensively for the exam. However, if desired, students may use the following texts as resources for preparation:

Theory Fundamentals:

Straus, Joseph N. Elements of Music, 3rd edition. Pearson, 2014.

Sight Singing:

Rogers, Nancy, and Robert W. Ottman. Music for Sight Singing, 9th edition. Pearson, 2014.

Dictation/Listening Skills:

Horvit, Michael, Koozin, Timothy, and Robert Nelson. Music for Ear Training, 4th edition. Schirmer, 2012.