- ARCHIVE as at 1 September 2013 for reference only

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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Edinburgh College of Art : Music

Undergraduate Course: Musical Instruments (MUSI10077)

Course Outline
SchoolEdinburgh College of Art CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Course typeStandard AvailabilityAvailable to all students
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) Credits20
Home subject areaMusic Other subject areaNone
Course website None Taught in Gaelic?No
Course descriptionThe class will meet in eleven weekly sessions, alternating between two-hour classroom sessions and visits to instrument-making workshops. In sessions 1, 3, 5, 7, and 9 the basic acoustics and operating principles of one type of instrument will be presented in a lecture; sessions 2, 4, 6, 8, and 10 will consist of a visit to an instrument maker's workshop in which the maker will discuss and (if appropriate) demonstrate techniques. In sessions 3, 5, 7, 9, and 11 there will be student presentations on topics related to previous lectures and visits. The types of instrument to be discussed will be (typically) string, wind (woodwind, brasswind and the organ), percussion and electronic instruments.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Additional Costs No
Information for Visiting Students
Displayed in Visiting Students Prospectus?No
Course Delivery Information
Delivery period: 2013/14 Semester 1, Available to all students (SV1) Learn enabled:  Yes Quota:  None
Web Timetable Web Timetable
Course Start Date 16/09/2013
Breakdown of Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 22, Summative Assessment Hours 2, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 172 )
Additional Notes
Breakdown of Assessment Methods (Further Info) Written Exam 40 %, Coursework 45 %, Practical Exam 15 %
Exam Information
Exam Diet Paper Name Hours:Minutes
Main Exam Diet S2 (April/May)Musical Instruments2:00
Summary of Intended Learning Outcomes
1. Explain basic operating principles of:
a) stringed instruments; review theories of bow-string interaction, explain significance of vibration modes of body;
b) brass instruments; review theories of lip reed, explain influence of bore profile on the modes of vibration;
c) woodwind instruments; describe sound generating mechanisms of flute, clarinet, oboe; explain frequency-dependent behaviour of open side holes;
d) percussion instruments, give qualitative descriptions of vibration of an air-loaded drumskin, tubular bell, cymbal; discuss perception of pitch;
e) keyboard instruments.
2. Review literature in a prescribed topic in musical instrument acoustics; present seminar paper and write essay.
3. Describe evolution of principal techniques of manufacture of woodwind and brass instruments; discuss influence of materials of construction on performance.
4. Describe principal techniques used in making bowed and plucked stringed instruments; explain how constructional features of violin, viol, lute & guitar determine acoustical behaviour.
5. Describe the principles of operation of clavichord, harpsichord, piano; explain how constructional features affect the loudness & timbre of stringed keyboard instruments.
Assessment Information
Write-ups of five workshop visits (15%)
Presentations (15%) to be scheduled by the Course Organiser.
One 3,000 word essay (30%) to be submitted by 16.00 on Wednesday of week 1 of semester 2.
One 2-hour degree examination (40%) in the May examination diet.

Visiting Student Assessment:
Write-ups of five workshop visits (25%)
Presentations (25%) to be scheduled by the Course Organiser.
One 3,000 word essay (50%) to be submitted by 16.00 on Wednesday of week 1 of semester 2.
Special Arrangements
Additional Information
Academic description Not entered
Syllabus Not entered
Transferable skills Not entered
Reading list D. Murray Campbell and Clive Greated, The Musician's Guide to Acoustics. London: Dent, 1987.

D. Murray Campbell, Clive Greated and Arnold Myers, Musical Instruments: History, Technology and Performance of Instruments of Western Music. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004.
Study Abroad Not entered
Study Pattern Not entered
KeywordsMusic, Musical Instruments, Instruments, String, Wind, Percussion, Electronic, Organ
Course organiserDr Arnold Myers
Tel: (0131 6)50 4367
Course secretaryMr Brad Herbert
Tel: (0131 6)50 2422
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