Due to inclement weather, The Boston Conservatory is currently CLOSED and will remain closed through Tuesday, January 27. During this time, all classes and performances are cancelled and all offices are closed. Updates will be posted to www.bostonconservatory.edu/alerts, as available.

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Placement Exams

Undergraduate Music Theory Placement Exam

During Orientation Week all incoming undergraduate and transfer students take a placement exam in Music Theory. The exam is in two sections:

Section 1
All students will be asked to identify scales, chords, and intervals. Students who pass this section will be placed in Harmony & Counterpoint 1. Students who do not pass this section will be placed in Music Fundamentals.

Section 2
Intermediate students will be asked to demonstrate competence in and understanding of Species Counterpoint (1st to 4th), harmonic analysis incorporating non-chord tones and secondary functions, analytical diagramming of a Minuet, and a harmonic realization of a Chorale. Students who pass this section will be waived out of Harmony & Counterpoint 1 and 2 and may choose to sit a second paper later in the week to test out of Harmony & Counterpoint 3 and 4.

The Ear Training and Harmony & Counterpoint course sequences are interrelated, so students who test out of Harmony & Counterpoint 1 and 2 must also test out of Ear Training 1 and 2 before advancing to the sophomore level sequence. Ear Training exams are held during Orientation Week for these students.

Before beginning Harmony & Counterpoint 1 we expect students to be familiar with the following:
• treble clef
• bass clef
• ledger lines (above and below, treble and bass clefs)
• scale degree names (supertonic, mediant, etc.)
• major scales
• major key signatures
• minor scales (natural, harmonic, and melodic)
• minor key signatures            
• recognition of all root position triads (major, minor, augmented, and diminished)
• simple and compound time-signatures (2/4, 3/4, 4/4, 6/8, 4/8, 9/8, 12/8 etc.)

There are no make-up exams: students who do not take a Placement Exam during Orientation Week will be placed in Music Fundamentals.

 

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