Portland Community College | Portland, Oregon

Course Number:
MUC 140A
Course Title:
Group Piano I
Credit Hours:
Lecture Hours:
Lecture/Lab Hours:
Lab Hours:
Special Fee:

Course Description

Introduces basic piano technique with correct observance of pitch, clef, meter, phrasing, and interpretation in a contemporary style. This is the first course in a three-course sequence. Audit available.

Addendum to Course Description

Group Piano I presents practical tools to develop basic piano skills. During class, students perform as an ensemble while following a tempo given by the instructor. Curriculum examines fundamentals of music theory, practicing habits, and various stylistic nuances. At the end of the term, students are encouraged to perform a solo piece in the presence of the instructor.

Intended Outcomes for the course

Upon completion of the course students will be able to:

  • Accurately perform selected scales and exercises and display proper fingering.
  • Construct and perform basic triad arpeggios (hand over hand, ascending and descending, diatonic & chromatic)
  • Identify common intervals and triads built on any major or minor scale degree.
  • Construct and accurately perform inversions of common triads.
  • Read and perform basic piano rhythms and compositions at sight.
  • Memorize notation of the grand staff and apply written notation to locations on the piano keyboard.

Course Activities and Design

Material for the course will be presented in a lecture format but also includes demonstrations and question/answer sessions. Instruction will take place in an electronic piano lab.

  • Instructor demonstrations of exercises, scales and pieces from workbook and other sources
  • Student execution of exercises, scales and pieces from workbook and other sources
  • Homework assignments (assigned pages and chapters from workbook)
  • Ear t raining of interval relationships and diatonic triads
  • In-class quizzes (written and aural)
  • Class participation and discussion
  • Final piano performance of a piece chosen by instructor

Outcome Assessment Strategies

Procedures used to evaluate student progress will be presented at the beginning of the course, with clarification of the instructor's expectations. Competency and grades will be determined according to the student's ability to perform assigned keyboard tasks during scheduled examinations. Written quizzes, homework assignments, creativity, participation, and regular attendance will also serve to gauge the outcome of a student's final grade.

Course Content (Themes, Concepts, Issues and Skills)

  • The Keyboard, Grand Staff, Clefs, Hand Placement, Fingering, Note Values, Scale Tones and Reading
  • Rhythm, C Major Scale, Exercises, Time Signatures, Count and Metronome
  • Intervals, Major Triad, Dominant Seventh, Arpeggios, Sight-reading
  • Dynamics, Chromatic Scale, Pentatonic Scales, Articulation
  • Major & Minor Scales, Diatonic Triads, Cadences, Chord Spellings
  • Alternate Fingerings, Hanon Exercises, Key Signatures
  • Hand Synchronization, Blues Scale, Chord Patterns, Octave Exercises
  • Inversion Exercises, Marks, Phrasing, Tempos, Syncopation
  • Styles, Terms, Codas and Repeats
  • Final Exam (Written and Performance), Entertainment Suggestions