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Course : Tuba

Course Number
AMUS 4581
Section Number
Spring 2019
Days & Times
Final Exam Day/Time

 Course Description:


  • The basic principle of applied lessons is to teach you about the pedagogy of your instrument and how to best perform on your instrument.
  • You will study all aspects of music performance, including technique, tone production, tonguing, articulation, and phrasing.
  • Music is a communicative art form, not just notes and technique. As many of you will go on to teach younger students about music, it is my goal to incorporate concepts and discuss situations that you will undoubtedly encounter as a band director/music teacher.



Students in applied tuba, euphonium, and trombone should be able to demonstrate:


  • An evolving technical ability on their instrument.
  • An understanding of musical phrasing and artistic interpretation.
  • A basic understanding of the language of music.
  • The ability to evaluate performances critically and coherently.
  • An active interest in their craft.
  • A concerted commitment toward improvement.
  • A continuing knowledge base of pedagogy and teaching techniques on their instrument, as well as all aspects of music education.

Low Brass Grading Policy



You will be given music performance assignments for each lesson.  Assignments should be prepared as if you were performing them publicly at the time of your lesson.  To take away some of the ambiguity of how lessons are graded, consider the following:


A lesson will be given the grade of A if: 


It is obvious that you have prepared the music for the lesson.  You are playing the material technically very well and it is obvious that you have given a good deal of thought to the artistic interpretation of the assignment.  You exhibit an understanding of the material and can perform at near-performance level.  Repeated material from the prior lesson has been more or less solved.


A lesson will be given the grade of B if:


It is obvious that you have prepared the music for the lesson.  You are playing the material fairly well, but still have a few technical issues that need to be worked out.  You show signs of artistic interpretation, but still need to develop the music a bit further.  You know that you could play this better.  Repeated material from the prior lesson shows improvement.


A lesson will be given the grade of C if:


It is not obvious that you have prepared adequately for the lesson.  You cannot play the material without hesitation.  Notes are missed.  Your performance is void of artistic expression. You show signs of understanding the material, but cannot execute these ideas through your instrument.  Repeated material from the prior lesson shows little improvement.


A lesson will be given the grade of D if:


It is obvious that you have not prepared the music for the lesson, yet somehow you are struggling through and improving during the course of the lesson.  You don’t know how things should sound.  You have ignored key signatures, missed notes, and demonstrate on overall unsatisfactory performance.  Repeated material from the prior lesson shows no improvement.


A lesson will be given the grade of F if:


You have an unexcused absence, or you attend the lesson but it is obvious that you have not prepared and no amount of struggling through can improve your performance.  You failed to bring in the assigned material and cannot perform in your lesson.  In these scenarios, you are wasting both my time and your own and the lack of self-discipline that is demonstrated is disappointing.


As music majors, you should spend a minimum of two hours a day practicing your instrument.  Three hours a day is ideal and more is even better.  However, the quantity of practice is not nearly as important as the quality of your practice sessions.  Go into your practice sessions with goals to achieve and don’t give up until it is evident that you have accomplished something.


Attendance and Participation:

Attendance at lessons is required.  Twenty-four hour notice is required for canceling lessons, except in cases of emergencies, and will require a doctor’s note, police report, court documentation, etc.  I am happy to make up lessons that were canceled for emergencies at a time that is convenient for both of us.  Simply not showing up for a lesson, or missing for a non-emergency situation, will result in an F for that week’s lesson.  If you are more than 15 minutes late to your lesson, the lesson will count as an unexcused absence.  You are allowed one unexcused absences without penalty.  After one unexcused absence, I will lower your final grade by ½ a letter for each subsequent unexcused absence.


Studio Class:


Attendance and participation at the weekly studio class is required.  Failure to attend or participate will negatively impact your final grade.

Note: You may not submit a paper for a grade in this class that already has been (or will be) submitted for a grade in another course, unless you obtain the explicit written permission of me and the other instructor involved in advance.

Plagiarism is the use of someone else's thoughts, words, ideas, or lines of argument in your own work without appropriate documentation (a parenthetical citation at the end and a listing in "Works Cited")-whether you use that material in a quote, paraphrase, or summary. It is a theft of intellectual property and will not be tolerated, whether intentional or not.

Student Honor Creed

As an MSU Student, I pledge not to lie, cheat, steal, or help anyone else do so."

As students at MSU, we recognize that any great society must be composed of empowered, responsible citizens. We also recognize universities play an important role in helping mold these responsible citizens. We believe students themselves play an important part in developing responsible citizenship by maintaining a community where integrity and honorable character are the norm, not the exception.

Thus, We, the Students of Midwestern State University, resolve to uphold the honor of the University by affirming our commitment to complete academic honesty. We resolve not only to be honest but also to hold our peers accountable for complete honesty in all university matters.

We consider it dishonest to ask for, give, or receive help in examinations or quizzes, to use any unauthorized material in examinations, or to present, as one's own, work or ideas which are not entirely one's own. We recognize that any instructor has the right to expect that all student work is honest, original work. We accept and acknowledge that responsibility for lying, cheating, stealing, plagiarism, and other forms of academic dishonesty fundamentally rests within each individual student.

We expect of ourselves academic integrity, personal professionalism, and ethical character. We appreciate steps taken by University officials to protect the honor of the University against any who would disgrace the MSU student body by violating the spirit of this creed.

Written and adopted by the 2002-2003 MSU Student Senate.

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal anti-discrimination statute that provides comprehensive civil rights protection for persons with disabilities. Among other things, this legislation requires that all students with disabilities be guaranteed a learning environment that provides for reasonable accommodation of their disabilities. If you believe you have a disability requiring an accommodation, please contact the Disability Support Services in Room 168 of the Clark Student Center, (940) 397-4140.

The professor considers this classroom to be a place where you will be treated with respect as a human being - regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, national origin, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, political beliefs, age, or ability. Additionally, diversity of thought is appreciated and encouraged, provided you can agree to disagree. It is the professor's expectation that ALL students consider the classroom a safe environment.

All instructors in the Department have voicemail in their offices and MSUTexas e-mail addresses. Make sure you add your instructor's phone number and e-mail address to both email and cell phone lists of contacts.

All students seeking a Bachelor's degree from Midwestern State University must satisfy a writing proficiency requirement once they've 1) passed the 6 hours of Communication Core and 2) earned 60 hours. Students may meet this requirement in one of three ways: by passing the Writing Proficiency Exam, passing two Writing Intensive Courses (only one can be in the core), or passing English 2113. If you have any questions about the exam, visit the Writing Proficiency Office website at, or call 397-4131.

Senate Bill 11 passed by the 84th Texas Legislature allows licensed handgun holders to carry concealed handguns on campus, effective August 1, 2016. Areas excluded from concealed carry are appropriately marked, in accordance with state law. For more information regarding campus carry, please refer to the University’s webpage at

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