Cañada College


MUS 100 Music Fundamentals SYLLABUS FALL 2010

Professor: David Meckler, Ph.D.

Office hours 10-12, TTh Room 3-242

Email: (start subject header with “100” or “MUS100” to get my attention)

Voice-mail: (650) 306-3439


The course will introduce basic music notation and concepts up through major and minor scales, key signatures, and chords, culminating in a short music composition that uses a simple chord progression.  The instructional method will primarily be working through the textbook in class.  Assessment will be through exams and one simple composition assignment. 


The course assumes absolutely NO musical background or experience.  


Required texts:  Practical Theory Complete, Sandy Feldstein.  Handouts and other material may be posted on the course website (  Students are encouraged to become familiar with the free notation software.


Grading and Assignments

Attendance is absolutely vital.   Please no late arrival, early departure, sleeping in class, doing non-course related computer work or reading non-course related materials in class.  Miss a class for a good reason? You are the judge, but only WRITTEN excuses accepted.  Excuse notes need not be official; I operate from an initial attitude of trust.  If you establish a pattern of many absences, I will no longer trust you, and excuses must be more formally documented (doctor’s note, etc.).  It is your responsibility to drop the class if you miss more than 5 class meetings.


Assignments and exams, 88%; final, 12%.   The lowest test score (except for the final) will be dropped.  You may retake one exam once in the term only in the week following the original exam date.  Standard grading percentages apply (A = 90%).  The final examination is comprehensive.



Approximately 2 lessons per week with graded tests approximately every 2 weeks, alternating with handouts that closely resemble the exam. 


MUS 100 AA Friday, 17 Dec, 8:10

MUS 100 AB Tuesday, 14 Dec, 8:10


Academic Integrity = Personal Integrity

I particularly encourage working together in this class.  HOWEVER, you must do you own work unless specified. Severe penalties, outlined in the Student Handbook, will be used in case of cheating or copied work without proper attribution. Plagiarism or any other form of cheating on assignments, composition projects or tests will result in a grade of zero for the assignment.


Student Learning Objectives

SLO 1 - Students will be able to identify and write musical intervals such as major and minor thirds.

SLO 2 - Students will be able to write a simple chord progression.

SLO 3 - Students will be able to write a melody with accompanying chords.