Before incoming graduate students may enroll in music theory courses, they first must demonstrate proficiency in harmony, form, counterpoint, sight-singing, and aural training, as determined by the CIM diagnostic test. This test is given to all auditioning students, and those who do not show proficiency must take and pass the MUTH400A / MUTH400B course before undertaking graduate-level study in music theory.
What will be on the diagnostic test?
- Harmony, Form, and Counterpoint:
- Realize a figured bass which contains diatonic and chromatic harmony, demonstrating excellent voice leading
- Analyze chords and non-chord tones in a chorale texture
- Analyze an 18th- or 19th-century work for its overall form as well as phrase structure and general compositional devices
- Analyze an 18th-century work for its contrapuntal aspects
- Sight-singing and Aural Training:
- Sing, at sight, melodies in treble, bass, alto, and tenor clefs which will include chromaticism and modulation
- Use solmization such as fixed do, moveable do, numbers, etc.
- Aural identification of intervals and various chord types
- Harmonic dictation of chorale-texture examples which will contain diatonic and chromatic harmony
What to expect in MUTH 400A/400B
MUTH 400A General Theory: Review of Musical Structure
Provides review in fundamentals of form, counterpoint, and four-part harmony. Course designed for graduate students; credit is not applicable toward degree requirements. Must be satisfactorily completed within the first two semesters of study at CIM.
Prerequisite: assignment by placement testing.
MUTH 400B General Theory: Sightsinging-Eartraining Review
Provides review in fundamentals of sightsinging in four clefs, and melodic and harmonic dictation including chromatic harmony and modulation. Course designed for graduate students; credit is not applicable toward degree requirements. Must be satisfactorily completed within the first two semesters of study at CIM.
Prerequisite:assignment by placement testing.
Summer Preparation for Theory Placement
While there are many ways in which you might prepare, CIM recommends some of the newer online theory programs developed within the past couple of years, and in particular, the undergraduate and graduate online music theory preparation program offered by The Eastman School of Music.
In co-ordination with Eastman, CIM has negotiated a $20 discount from the normal fees for each course: ($99 for the graduate preparation course) The course takes approximately 4 weeks of methodical study to effectively cover the material.
To register and purchase the appropriate E-Theory course for your program of study, please follow these instructions:
Login Instructions for CIM Students
Please follow this link to register.
- Click "Add to Cart"
- Click "Checkout"
- Enter coupon code cim14s. This will subtract $20 from the registration fee.
- Complete the Billing Address information to create your account
- Click "Place Order"
After checkout, access eTheory from your "My Account" page.
- Tonal Harmony by Kostka, Stefan, and Dorothy Payne (McGraw-Hill) - This is the harmony textbook which a number of the CIM theory faculty use. Although it is in 6th edition, the content changes very little from edition to edition. While the current edition costs almost $100 for the textbook, an earlier edition (used) can be purchased online for under $10. In this book, there is a section on fundamentals.
- www.musictheory.net - Outstanding online source for tutorials and exercises.
- www.lightandmatter.com/sight/sight.html - Online sight singing materials