Contemporary Popular Theory II

Language, Literature & Performing Arts
Course Code
MUSC 2412
Semester Length
15 Weeks
Max Class Size
Method Of Instruction
Typically Offered
To be determined


Course Description
This course continues the study of harmony and form in popular music with emphasis on idiomatic practices of pop and blues styles.
Course Content

1. Harmonic Practices:

  • Folk (Diatonic/Chromatic, Tonal/Modal)
  • Pop (Diatonic/Chromatic, Tonal/Modal)
  • Blues Tonality
  • Reference to Jazz (Chromatic/modal)

2. Form:

  • Popular/Folk song/32-bar forms
  • More advanced Blues Forms
  • Other Pop/Rock forms

3. Repertoire for listening and analysis will continue to be drawn from a wide range of styles such as:

  • Folk/Country
  • Blues/Gospel
  • Ragtime/Jazz
  • Tin Pan Alley/Broadway
  • Rhythm and Blues/Rock and Roll
  • Pop/Rock
  • Hip Hop/Dance/Electronica

4. Other Topics:

  • Basic arranging techniques
    1. keyboard
    2. choral/vocal
    3. small ensemble
    4. rhythm section
  • Score/chart/part conventions
  • Basic Instrumentation topics
Methods Of Instruction

Concepts and techniques are presented and discussed in the lectures; assignments are undertaken by the students.

Means of Assessment
Short Assignments (minimum of 3) 15%
Major Projects 20%
Class Participation 10%
Quizzes (minimum of 5) 10%
Tests (minimum of 2) 20%
Final Examination 25%
TOTAL 100%
Learning Outcomes

At the end of the course, the successful student will be able to:

  • identify idiomatic practices in popular music.
  • apply core theoretical concepts used to create characteristic sounds in popular music.
  • harmonize, arrange and compose excerpts in a popular style with or without a given melody, bass line, or chord progression.
  • create charts, scores and parts. 
  • provide written answers to questions on any aspect of the course content.
Textbook Materials

Required texts (current edition) such as the following:

Tagg, Philip. Everyday Tonality II: Towards a Tonal Theory of What Most People Hear. The Mass Media Scholars Press, Inc., New York & Huddersfield.


Snodgrass, Jennifer Sterling. Contemporary Musicianship:Analysis and the Artist. Oxford University Press.



MUSC 2312 or special permission of instructor





Requisite for

This course is not required for any other course.

Course Guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester / year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

Course Transfers

Institution Transfer Details Effective Dates
Alexander College (ALEX) ALEX HUMN 2XX (3) 2018/09/01 to -
Athabasca University (AU) AU MUSI 3XX (3) 2018/09/01 to -
Emily Carr University of Art & Design (EC) No credit 2018/09/01 to -
Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) KPU MUSI 3550 (3) 2018/09/01 to -
North Island College (NIC) No credit 2018/09/01 to -
Simon Fraser University (SFU) SFU CA 1XX (3) 2018/09/01 to -
Thompson Rivers University (TRU) TRU MUSC 2XXX (3) 2018/09/01 to -
University of British Columbia - Okanagan (UBCO) DOUG MUSC 2312 (3) & DOUG MUSC 2412 (3) = UBCO MUSC 100 (3) & UBCO MUSC 103 (3) 2018/09/01 to -
University of Northern BC (UNBC) UNBC HUMN 2XX (3) 2018/09/01 to -
University of Victoria (UVIC) UVIC MUS 1XX (1.5) 2018/09/01 to -
Vancouver Community College (VCC) VCC MUSC 2403 (3) 2019/05/01 to -
Vancouver Island University (VIU) VIU MUSC 2nd (3) 2018/09/01 to -

Course Offerings

Summer 2021

There aren't any scheduled upcoming offerings for this course.