Computing for Musicians

Subject 740-102 (2008)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2008. Search for this in the current handbook Search for this in the current handbook

Credit Points: 6.250
Level: Undergraduate
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2008:

Semester 1, - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

On campus

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 1 two-hour seminar per week
Total Time Commitment: 60 hours
Prerequisites: BMus students only
Corequisites: nil
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements: It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability will impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and the Disability Liaison Unit.


Mr David Collins
Subject Overview:

Students will acquire basic skills in the use of computers for music notation, composition and music education, and learn the fundamentals of MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface).

At the completion of this subject, students should be able to:

  • use notation software to enter, layout and edit music in a variety of formats, including music scored for multiple instruments, keyboard instruments, vocal parts
  • produce scores and players’ parts that are accurate and legible
  • export graphics from notation software and incorporate them into other types of document, such as a word-processing file, presentation or web page
  • produce audio and MIDI versions of their score
  • understand the nature of difficulties encountered when transcribing real-time performances into usable notation, and of the issues involved in using combined sequencing/notation environments
  • demonstrate practical skills in using MIDI and sequencing software

In particular, students should be able to:

  • set up a simple MIDI system for classroom or performance use
  • understand the purpose of the commonly-used MIDI message types
  • use sequencing software to produce an arrangement with musical control of structure, dynamics, phrasing, and instrumentation.

Assessment: Two notation exercises due as assigned during the semester (10% each); a 10-minute class presentation and 500 word written summary (25%); an ensemble scoring project of approximately 30 bars, minimum 4 staves (30%); a MIDI sequencing project of 1 minute duration, 4-track minimum, due at the end of semester (25%)
Prescribed Texts: nil
Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

On completion of this subject students should be able to:

  • self-direct their learning of complex software packages through the use of computer-based and online resources
  • negotiate around the common design constraints of music software, in order to advance the musical aims of the project at hand
  • approach the learning of new technologies with a positive, explorative attitude.

Related Course(s): Bachelor of Arts & Bachelor of Music
Bachelor of Music
Bachelor of Music (Performance)
Bachelor of Music and Bachelor of Commerce
Bachelor of Music and Bachelor of Laws
Diploma in Music (Practical)
Diploma in Music (Practical)

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