Another course evaluation of a course I took in the second term of my first year: MUSC 106.
Course Description: The continuation of MUSC 105, so basically, the same thing except harder. MUSC 105 was really about figuring out how to use solfège, basic dictation skills, easy sight singing, interval identification. It seemed really hard at first because it was something totally new, but it’s important to really get a handle on these skills, because MUSC 106 kind of assumes you’re good at all that stuff now. New course material included identifying more types of chords, trickier rhythms (and having to clap out two at the same time), more difficult leaps to sing, some simple harmonic dictation.
Textbook use: This course requires the same two textbooks as MUSC 105, Manual for Ear Training and Sight Singingand Anthology for Sight Singing by Gary S. Karpinski, and the accompanying CD. The Anthology is more important (I think) than the Manual, because all your prepared melodies for exams come from there, but the manual is also important for when you want to practice dictations at home or read up on a concept you’re not totally comfortable with. The Anthology is used in class nearly every time.
Homework: Again, the homework in this class is not for marks; it’s practicing on your own time. Since no one’s going to check if you did it or not, it’s tempting to just not do it, but the only marks you have for this class are the midterm(s) and the final. If you don’t practice as you go along, you’re going to be shaky for the tests.
Professor: I had Gordon Paslawski, the coordinator, and I found him to be a really really good teacher, even if he did move fairly quickly. (It meant we actually had time to go through everything.) Generally though, the class is taught by a TA and they vary from term to term.
Class format: Small class size, instructed by a TA, generally practicing things you’ll need to know for your tests. You may be asked to sight sing in front of people, but usually it’s on a volunteer basis. Attendance is also taken into consideration if you need to take a re-test later (ie. you should show up for class).
Additional comments: First term, I didn’t practice musicianship nearly as much as I should have, and when I did the final exam I came out of it half-convinced that I’d failed. I didn’t, but I resolved the next term to practice consistently throughout the term, and when it came time for the final, I walked out of there feeling like I did pretty much everything right! No nervousness whatsoever. Imagine that!