HUM-274 / 2 credits

Teacher: Rohrmeier Martin Alois

Language: English

Remark: Une seule inscription à un cours SHS+MGT autorisée. En cas d'inscriptions multiples elles seront toutes supprimées sans notification.


This course provides an introduction into music theory and analysis, composition, and creativity, and combines theoretical teaching with hands-on practical exercises and music making.



Music, music theory and analysis, computational musicology, creativity, composition, improvisation, musical practice


POLY-perspective :

  • creative perspective
  • interdisciplinary perspective




Learning Prerequisites

Important concepts to start the course

Prior knowledge of score reading and music theory (harmony & counterpoint) is desirable, but the class can be completed without.

A good start for a background in basic music theoretical concepts is provided by the literature below as well as:


Learning Outcomes

By the end of the course, the student must be able to:

  • Apply musical theoretical concepts
  • Analyze musical pieces and performances
  • Use practical musical techniques
  • Contextualise musical principles and aesthetic outccomes
  • Apply and broaden listening and appraisal skills
  • Critique musical pieces and performances
  • Compose musical phrases and pieces

Transversal skills

  • Demonstrate a capacity for creativity.
  • Summarize an article or a technical report.
  • Demonstrate the capacity for critical thinking
  • Use a work methodology appropriate to the task.

Teaching methods

Weekly sessions including ex-cathedra lecturing, readings and discussion, group work, and practical exercises.

Expected student activities

1.     Regular presence and active participation in discussions
2.     Completing readings and assignments, and practicing the music theoretical and practical concepts
3.     Engagement in practical parts and exercises

Assessment methods

1.     Active participation in the class
2.     Class project, essay, presentation or final exam on the concepts covered in the class


Office hours Yes
Assistants Yes
Forum Yes



The following general texts are a good starting point. Further specialized literature will be suggested throughout the class.


Aldwell, E., Schachter, C. & Cadwallader, A. (2018). Harmony and voice leading. Cengage Learning.
Boosey & Hawkes; or: Laitz, S.G. (2003). The complete musician: an integrated approach to tonal harmony, analysis, and listening. Oxford University Press.Gauldin, R. (1997). Harmonic Practice in Tonal Music. New York: Norton.
Hofstadter, D. (1979). Gödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid. Basic Books, New
York, 1979.
Hallam, S., Cross, I., & Thaut, M. (Eds.). (2011). Oxford handbook of music psychology. Oxford University Press.

Ressources en bibliothèque

In the programs

  • Semester: Spring
  • Number of places: 60
  • Exam form: During the semester (summer session)
  • Subject examined: Musical theory and creativity
  • Lecture: 2 Hour(s) per week x 14 weeks
  • Semester: Spring
  • Number of places: 60
  • Exam form: During the semester (summer session)
  • Subject examined: Musical theory and creativity
  • Lecture: 2 Hour(s) per week x 14 weeks

Reference week

15-16 ELD020   

Tuesday, 15h - 17h: Lecture ELD020