Proficiencies

Keyboard/Sightsinging Proficiency, MUS 2298

MUS 2298 is the keyboard/sightsinging proficiency requirement that helps students to develop the basic keyboard and sightsinging skills that are essential to a career in music. All music majors at The College of St. Scholastica are required to pass MUS 2298 before a degree will be granted. In order to pass MUS 2298, one must:

Keyboard Requirements

  1. Be able to play all major and minor scales, two octaves up and down, hands together with correct fingering at a steady tempo.

  2. Perform a prepared piece of the difficulty of the easiest Scarlatti sonatas or Chopin or Mendelssohn pieces, approved by the proficiency coordinator (Dr. House), by memory. This section will be waived for keyboard majors.

  3. Sight-read easy pieces--may include a simple sonatina, hymn, and other style at a comparable level of difficulty.

  4. Given 30 minutes to prepare: a. Realize a figured bass of the difficulty of an easy Italian baroque sonata, with the fluency necessary to accompany a soloist. -OR- b. Play a simple vocal score (three parts), with the fluency necessary to accompany a chorus.

  5. Given 30 minutes to prepare, improvise an accompaniment to a folk song, such as “Yankee Doodle" or "Oh Susanna," with adequate fluency and appropriate style to accompany an elementary instrumentalist or classroom, being able to sing as well as play. Transpose that accompaniment to any given key, as might be needed to accommodate vocal or instrumental ranges. Sightsinging Requirements Sightsing any voice part in your range from a song or choral piece which is chosen by the voice and theory faculty.

Students must register for piano lessons to prepare for MUS 2298. Your teacher will give you further information about the proficiency exams and how to prepare for them. At least three "Proficiency Exam" times are held each semester. When you are ready to demonstrate your proficiency in any of the sections of MUS 2298, sign up on the sheet that will be posted on the bulletin board outside of T3607. REGISTER ONLY ONCE FOR MUS 2298. You may register for MUS 2298 after you have demonstrated all proficiencies. At that time you may either add the course (no late fee will be charged) or register at the beginning of the following semester.

Students should plan to pass MUS 2298 by the end of the sophomore year. We recommend that you begin taking sections of the exams as soon as you feel prepared. Failure to pass all sections prior to the end of the second semester of the sophomore year may result in refusal of permission to enter the major. All sections must be passed before permission to student teach is granted. For further information, see the Keyboard/Sightsinging Skills coordinator, Dr. LeAnn House.

Music Education Proficiency, MUS 3298

MUS 3298 is the music education proficiency exam that demonstrates that students have skills that are required of them for state licensure as music teachers. These skills include improvisation and performance on guitar and recorder.

All students planning to seek licensure in Music Education must pass MUS 3298 before student teaching. The three main requirements for MUS 3298 are:

  1. Improvisation: Students will improvise in one of the following ways:

    • Improvise a melody over a ground bass or figured bass;

    • Improvise at least two variations of a given melody (at sight);

    • Given a melody, ornament in a given historic/geographic style;

    • Improvise in jazz style over a given chord sequence;

    • Provide a stylistically-appropriate conclusion to an incipient theme

  2. Guitar: Students will accompany themselves with appropriate chords and rhythms on a guitar as they sing two songs they have prepared.

  3. Recorder: Students will choose and perform a selection on the recorder using appropriate fingerings and techniques.

To prepare for the recorder proficiency, students should either take Beginning Recorder (MUS 1431) or consult a faculty recorder specialist about fingerings and techniques. Students may wish to take guitar lessons to prepare for the guitar proficiency. For improvisation skills, talk to your applied teacher about ways to prepare for the particular skill you plan to pass. When you are ready to demonstrate any of the proficiencies, sign up for a Proficiency Exam time. REGISTER ONLY ONCE FOR MUS 3298, after you have completed the requirements. You may do a late "add" or register for the following semester. For further information, see the Music Education coordinator Ms. Connelly.