Introduction to Music Technology
(1 credit)

Sections 001 & 002
Fall, 2012

Reserved Computer Classroom Times:

MW 11 - 11:50 AM (001) and 3 - 3:50 PM (002)


Text and Materials

Course Description

Learning Goals and Objectives

Course Requirements and Rules

Syllabus Quiz

Assignments and Late Work Policy

Attendance Policy

Blackboard Features

Grading Scale

Course Schedule

University-Wide Policies




Daniel C. Johnson, Ph.D.


1056 Cultural Arts Building

Office Hours
by Appointment

M - F, 10 - 11 AM
By Appointment


(910) 962-7559



Text and Materials:


Course Description:

This required course for music majors is intended to provide an introduction to music technology as it relates to music composition, performance, analysis, teaching, and research. Skills and concepts learned in this course will provide a foundation and basic understanding of music technology necessary for application in other courses of the music curriculum (i.e. theory, history, performance, and music education).

This course provides a basic overview of digital audio, computer-generated notation, and MIDI. This course is designed for students with some musical background and knowledge of music theory who wish to enhance their music making through the use of music technology. While this is not a course in composition or performance, students will create some of their own compositions and use their performance skills to gain an understanding of music technology. Assignments, readings, discussions, and projects address a variety of music software. Through these and other means, students will explore the intersection of musical aesthetic with computer-assisted technology. Ultimately, they will investigate how technology enhancements offer musicians ways to create music in more meaningful and musical ways. Beyond music, students will also consider the impact of technology, and reflect on how “computing is not about computers anymore. It is about living.” (Nicholas Negroponte, Being Digital, 1995)


Learning Goals and Objectives:

This course is designed to meet the following goals:

This course has the following objectives:

This course has the following learning outcomes:


Course Requirements and Rules:


Seven Important Rules:

  1. Do NOT allow unauthorized students access to the Computer Classroom. Because you are registered for this course, you will have key-card access to the classroom using your student ID. You may use the classroom any time the building is open and there is not a class conflict. The schedule for classes in the classroom is posted on the door. Check with the instructor if you would like to use the classroom during one of the times. Only authorized students have this key-card access on their ID. When a class is not in session, the computer classroom door should be shut; it will lock automatically.
  2. Do NOT have open food or drink containers at your station. Because any food and drink accidentally spilled on the computer, keyboards, or mouse can damage the equipment, keep any food or drink containers closed. Alternatively, you may leave any drink or food at the front table if they do not have lids that seal.
  3. Save your work. Much frustration and anxiety can be avoided by taking a simple and painless step: save your work regularly. During the course, you can save your work to a CDR, CDRW, or a jump drive formatted for the Macintosh. An alternative is to use Timmy, a file server dedicated to student use. The most important thing, however, is to save yourself time and trouble by saving your work more often than you think is necessary!
  4. Log out when you’ve finished a session at your computer. To prevent using the computers under the wrong log-in profile, be sure to log out of your computer after you’ve saved your work.
  5. Don’t expect me to be available 24/7. Just because this course is enhanced with Web CT features that are available 24/7 doesn't mean that I can be available for all students, all the time (because I am only human). I promise--I will get back with you promptly regarding questions. Just as if you were in a traditional class and sent an email, you have to give me time to respond. Please ask questions if you have them...but give me time to answer them.
  6. Don’t panic. It goes along with all of the others that I've mentioned. Think. Breathe. Relax. Sure, I have rules, but I am fair. If you would like to meet with me, drop by my office or call me during my conventional office hours or make an appointment.
  7. Don’t forget to read! This syllabus is detailed for a reason. Have a question about an assignment? Have you checked the syllabus first? Have you re-read the course packet? Have you checked the course announcements and your email? All of this comes FIRST before you send an email to me.


Syllabus Quiz:

There will be one Syllabus Quiz given to assess students’ understanding of this course design. Attendance in the computer classroom during your assigned time is REQUIRED for each assessment. This quiz may be taken only once. The quiz will address policies and procedures outlined in this syllabus. Although anything is "fair game," I will ask questions to allow you to demonstrate your knowledge of the important content. The quiz will be given on the date indicated in the course schedule. There will be no make-up opportunities for this assessment.


Assignments and Late Work Policy:

To monitor student progress and facilitate the learning process, you will complete multiple assignments to reinforce the course content. Assignments will be scheduled by the instructor and involve applying skills for music notation as independent projects. See the course schedule for specific dates scheduled for each module.

Students will receive full credit for complete, correct assignments submitted on time. (At my discretion, I may excuse minor errors and award full credit.) Students will receive partial credit awarded on a sliding scale for incomplete assignments containing substantial errors submitted on time. Students will receive no credit for missing assignments. Additional time in the computer classroom is available as posted on the classroom door. You can gain access to the classroom during these times by swiping your ID card in the card reader posted outside the classroom door.

For full credit, students must turn in assignments and any other materials at the time that they are due. In the event that you do not turn in a posting by the due date and time, it will be given half credit (50%) if you submit it by the beginning of the next class meeting. Postings submitted later than the beginning of the next class meeting not be graded.



BlackBoard Orientation:
One important task is completing the Blackboard Orientation. This is an online guide to Blackboard 9 available via a link on the course homepage.


Attendance Policy:

Attendance is required for classroom discussions and assessments scheduled on Mondays and Wednesdays. Reserved classroom times are Mondays and Wednesdays (section 001 from 11 - 11:50 AM and section 002 from 3 - 3:50). When you have any questions about the course, simply email or phone your instructor (962-7559) for an appointment during office hours or at an alternative time. In addition, your instructor will be available on most Mondays and Wednesdays in the computer classroom. See the course schedule for specific dates scheduled for each module.


BlackBoard Features:

There are course enhancements for MUS 110, making it a hybrid online course, delivered through BlackBoard Learn. This form on e-learning allows students some freedom but demands more responsibility for their own learning than traditional face-to-face courses. Access the BlackBoard Learn site using the Blackboard server. The following components or tools in BlackBoard are important for this course:



Grading Scale:

Calculation of the final course grade is as follows:

For the final course grade, a ten-point grading scale will be used as follows:















Course Schedule (tentative):

The flow of this course is based on the learning goals, course objectives, and the tentative calendar (below). The focus for each week addresses one or more course goals utilizing different computer-based applications. In general, Mondays are work days and Wednesdays are discussion and review days. There are assignments scheduled during the semester as listed below. The assignments are listed as a number followed by a letter; for example, 1A, 1B, 1C, etc. All assignments are explained in class or online and due on the dates indicated below by 11 PM.

The course content is organized in three modules:

Module I: Non-Traditional Notation via Digital Audio
Software: Audacity, Garage Band, & Logic Express

Module II: Traditional Notation via Computer Software
Software: Finale, Finale Notepad, & NoteFlight

Module III: Displaying and Hearing Traditional Notation
Software: Finale (cont.), MIDI, & Microsoft Office graphics


Week of:


Monday Topic:

Wednesday Topic:



Beginning of Semester

Introduction and Syllabus


Module I

Video presentation: Defining Music Technology

OS and Internet skills, Introducing Module I software



 Labor Day

Syllabus Quiz
Exploring Module I software



Assignment 1A Due

BlackBoard Orientation Due

Exploring Module I software (cont.)



Assignment 1B Due

Using Module I software and online resources



Assignment 1C Due

Using Module I software (cont.)



Assignment 1D Due

Module I Project Due


Module II

Fall Break

Introducing Module II software



Assignment 2A Due

Exploring Module II software



Assignment 2B Due

Using Module II software (cont.)



Assignment 2C Due

Using Module II software (cont.)



Assignment 2D Due

Module II Project Due


Module III

Assignment 3A Due

Introducing Module III software



Assignment 3B Due

Exploring Module III software



Assignment 3C Due

Thanksgiving Break




Module III Project Due

Assignment and Assessment Schedule

For each module, there are three or more assignments (1A, 1B, 1C, 1 D, etc.) In addition, there are other assignments as listed above and announced in class. All assignments are due on the dates indicated by 11 PM. Each assignment will be explained by the instructor in class and/or in written directions. There is only one assessment for this course. That is the Syllabus Quiz, given as scheduled toward the beginning of the semester.


University-Wide Policies

Academic Honor Code
All members of UNCW’s community are expected to follow the academic Honor Code. Please read the UNCW Honor Code carefully - as covered in the UNCW Student Handbook and available
online. Academic dishonesty in any form will not be tolerated in this class.
Religious Observance Policy
In accordance with NC SL 2010-211, you are entitled to two excused absences for religious observances per academic year. You must inform your instructor in writing the first week of class if you will be missing any classes due to religious observance and using one of the two permissible absences for the academic year. In addition, please inform the Registrar the first week of class who will then confirm your intentions to miss class with the impacted course instructors. Any absence for religious purposes will be considered unexcused unless you submit the request in writing the first week to either your instructor and the Registrar.
Zero Tolerance Policy
UNCW practices a zero tolerance policy for violence and harassment of any kind. For emergencies contact UNCW CARE at 962-2273; Campus Police at 962-3184; or Wilmington Police at 911.  For University or community resources visit: Violence prevention information and resources available at We will focus several class discussions on the importance of reducing violence and increasing tolerance in schools and at UNCW.
Cell Phones, PDAs, Laptops
Please silence your cell phone and do not make calls, access applications or text during class. If you have a personal, urgent matter for which you need to be on call, please let your instructor know in advance. In addition, please do not have active any PDAs or laptops/netbooks/iPads open and active unless the activity warrants.
The UNCW Statement on Diversity in the University Community
As an institution of higher learning, the University of North Carolina Wilmington represents a rich diversity of human beings among its faculty, staff, and students and is committed to maintaining a campus environment that values that diversity. Accordingly, the university supports policies, curricula, and co-curricular activities that encourage understanding of and appreciation for all members of its community and will not tolerate any harassment or disrespect for persons because of race, gender, age, color, national origin, ethnicity, creed, religion, disability, sexual orientation, political affiliation, marital status, or relationship to other university constituents. Students with Disabilities information and resources available at


The above syllabus for this course is subject to change by the instructor. In the event of any alteration, written changes to the syllabus will be provided at least 2 days (48 hours) before they take effect.