Southern Region

Grant Beglarian




Five schools comprise the IMCE's Southern Region. Their programs have emphasized a theory-music history juxtaposition, and in one case (East Carolina University) a specific study is focused on the development of skills as they appear chronologically. In another (Florida State University), music materials are approached by subject headings applicable to all periods of music history. Regional programs have stressed the exploration of programmed instruction as an effective means of learning basic musical skills.


Region, Director and Administrative Center   Institutions and Program Heads
        East Carolina University, Thomas Miller, James Searl
SOUTHERN REGION     Florida State University, Everett Pittman
  Wiley Housewright     George Peabody College for Teachers, Gilbert Trythall
  Florida State University     University of Georgia, Charles Douglas
        University of Kentucky, Bernard Fitzgerald


The objectives of the experimental course at Florida State University have been (1) to present a musical heritage as a single body of learning with variations inherent in different stylistic periods, and (2) to examine the traditional theory curriculum with respect to the needs of all music students regardless of their major fields, in order that they may be taught the basic skills and theoretical techniques that they will find indispensable to their professional careers.

The materials of music are presented according to subject headings applicable to all periods of music history. When approached in this manner, each element may be applied to any literature, even though some techniques may be more pertinent to a single musical era. Study of these materials has been reinforced by written assignments, all of which were essentially exercises in creative writing. All written assignments were performed in class. Programmed instructional materials were used for aural training and sight-singing.

Jacksonville Public Schools. Three experimental classes were started in the Jacksonville schools. A group of 20 fifth grade students were scheduled for a daily thirty-minute period of basic musicianship including sight-singing and creative work. An experimental class at the junior high level added programmed basic musicianship materials to the curriculum of a choral class meeting three times weekly. A similar experiment was conducted with a senior high girls chorus.

THOMAS MILLERProgram Head, 1966-67 
JAMES SEARLProgram Head, 1967-68

The objective of the East Carolina College Program for the MENC Project in Music Creativity is to acquaint the student with the theory, history and style of western music, to facilitate his understanding of the changing perspectives of his cultural heritage, and to equip him with the skills needed to successfully assume the roll of an acting professional musician in the Twentieth Century.

One approach is one of theory-history. Rather than acquiring skills in the traditionally abstract manner, we have chosen to relate and accumulate skills (aural comprehension) as they appear in a chronological study. The historical study is occasionally enriched by excursions into related theoretical techniques as found in contemporary music.

Students are required to purchase the Historical Anthology of Music (Volume I), and Masterpieces of Music Literature. Lectures are supplemented by readings in the Harvard Dictionary of Music and A History of Western Music (Grout). Students compose stylistic examples based on insights gathered from the analysis of selected materials. Music Literature examples, as well as the student's own compositions are performed in class. This collegium musicum forms the basis for not only learning the literature, but also acquiring aural skill.

We have thus far studied Gregorian Chant, Troubadour and Trouvére music, and organum up to the St. Martial style. Our study of Chant included performing and analysing the Easter Mass in the Liber Usualis, as well as one excursion into contemporary monophonic pieces. Dictation has centered on those intervals and tonalities found in the music thus far studied. Plans are being made to supplement aural drill with tape recording equipment. Theoretical analysis during the first quarter was primarily concerned with melodic properties. We have begun studying measured rhythms as introduced in the medieval rhythmic modes.

We felt that the study of older music is simple enough to correlate with beginning aural skills, and also, that students have no prejudice for or against this music, since few know anything about it. Moreover, the subtleties afforded by the apparent simplicity of this music increases the student's sensitivity to other musical styles. Lastly, plainsong and medieval music are the wellspring from which all western music flows. We believe we are being successful in conveying these things. We feel our students will have a decided educational advantage over students in traditional theory and history programs.

We feel very strongly that this course must be expanded to three years: the first year devoted to the study of Medieval and Renaissance music, the second year, Baroque and Classical, and the third year, Romantic and Contemporary.

Public School Program

Comprehensive musicianship course in Raleigh, North Carolina schools: this course was designed and offered to senior high school students who had already attained some degree of proficiency in performance either as vocalists or instrumentalists. The course included theory, literature and history, and was primarily aimed at the development of musical understanding through performance, listening and writing.


Six semesters of integrated music history and theory seek to acquaint the student with a chronological record of the significant works and styles of western musical art and their composers from Gregorian Chant to the present through reading and listening, to discover the basic organizational principles used in the composition of these works through analysis, and to apply these principles through composition and performance.

A companion four semester course in sight singing and ear training seeks to develop functional skills in sound-symbol relation identification and performance.

Class testing includes essay or identification questions over historical material, analysis of musical fragments, writing problems, or summary questions involving a synthesis of the former. Out of class testing includes assignments of bibliography development, analysis of complete works, and creative work.

The development of ear training and sight singing skills is tested regularly in the companion course with materials of graded difficulty. Ear training is accomplished by means of programmed material developed by the program chairman.

The program director has reviewed the purposes of his project. He is defining instructional objectives for the course in creative musicianship in terms of observable behavior at intermediate, terminal, and post-learning tasks. Two years of the program are now in operation; the third and final will be added in the fall and a syllabus is being prepared.

Partially as a result of our meeting with Dr. Merrell Sherburn in February, the program director has expanded programmed instruction in ear training to an additional experimental group which receives programmed sightsinging instruction in the Peabody Language Laboratory. Program steps are multilithed and pre-recorded. Students use neither numbers nor solfege in this program; but respond with "la" to musical notation at the proper pitch, receiving correction or reinforcement approximately one-half second later. It is too early to describe the experiment beyond this general statement.

Nashville Public Schools project

Fourteen 7th grade classes are being used to develop a creative approach to general music. Its point of departure is the surrounding environment of popular and commercial music, and is designed to lead the student to a knowledge of the essential elements of music. Each class meets 2 hours a week, and uses Music in Our Times as a text. Activities include singing pop songs selected by the students, a Christmas program created entirely by the students, a "lecture-concert" by a local combo, symphony concerts, instrument making, music reading skills, an electronic music demonstration, and original composition.


The IMCE at the University of Georgia has been involved in two projects: 1) the devising of comprehensive musicianship courses for the aspiring professional, 2) the adapting of ideas, skills, and materials developed in the first project for general students in Clarke County Junior High School.

The first project

The first project is designed to: 1) determine the effectiveness of a traditional sophomore theory sequence in developing those understandings vital to artistic comprehension of music and 2) include a study and utilization of basic compositional techniques in the theory sequence and determine their effects on the development of those same understandings. Basic compositional techniques were presented by means of programmed instructional materials supplementing class lecture-discussions. The primary goal of the programmed materials was to develop the student's ability to compose music in a contemporary style. However, the development of every presented contemporary technique was traced throughout all periods of music history.

The second project

The second project, concurrent with the first, has two purposes: 1) to determine the extent to which the programmed materials in compositional techniques, developed in the first project, will contribute to the development of musicianship at the junior high school level, and 2) to determine the effectiveness of experiences in composing music at the junior high school level in stimulating further study in music. The results of this study should be valuable in developing teaching materials and structuring the curriculum.

The programmed materials developed in connection with the first project have been modified for use at the junior high school level. Two graduate assistants and the program head are using the modified materials as a basis for conducting experiments in composing music with students of Clarke County Junior High School. This portion of the project extended for a period of one school year. Implications for further study will be determined from a final evaluation by the program head.

In the first project, the control group has been evaluated using a devised measuring instrument which examined student achievement in understanding and comprehension of both contemporary and pre-contemporary music.

The programmed instructional materials which supplement class lecture-discussions have been revised based on their use with the first experimental group. They will be used with the second experimental group beginning in Fall, 1967, and, if necessary, revised again before being presented to the third experimental group in Winter, 1968.

In addition to developing the programmed instructional materials, the first experimental group became aware of many compositional techniques. These techniques were used in writing both contemporary and pre-contemporary compositions. Most of these compositions were performed for the class, some during the regularly scheduled class time and some during extra meetings of the class held especially for this purpose. In addition, a few of the works were performed and well-received on student recitals.

The music theory faculty and the music history faculty have held joint meetings semi-monthly since last September. These meetings have been devoted to developing ways and means of relating the two areas more effectively. By observing student behavior in the classroom, it is evident that these meetings are making a difference.

Concerning the second project, over 150 junior high school students have had experience in the composing of music. Hundreds of compositions have been written and performed by these junior high school students. Many concepts usually associated with the training of older students have been assimilated. It is evident that these composing experiences have stimulated changes in other areas such as taste and attitude.


The pilot program at the University of Kentucky is being conducted with one section of the freshman theory course involving 16 students representing a random cross-section of the freshman class. The course meets five hours per week with a basic division of 3 hours for aural skills and 2 hours devoted to writing skills, analysis and performance. Guidelines for the course are:

  1. A conceptual approach to learning is a more effective means of developing musicianship.
  2. The organizing principles of music should serve as the point of departure for the study of a variety of musical styles.
  3. Experience in creative writing on a continuing basis is important in developing insight into the process of composition and is relevant to the study, analysis, and performance of all music.
  4. Exposure and study of many musical styles is essential to the education of the contemporary musician.
  5. Class performance, discussion, and analysis are important to the development of musical understanding and discrimination.
  6. The discovery approach to learning should have an important place in the education of musicians.
  7. Programmed instruction is a more effective and efficient means of mastering some of the basic musical skills.

Students in the pilot program are also enrolled in a music survey course.

Two projects have been started in the Lexington schools. The first, in grades 4-6, attempts to involve children in music through their own creative efforts. The second, in grade 3, is an experiment in basic humanities with a sociological orientation: man and his relationship to his environment and the arts.