Music theory is the study of elements of musical sound, and the relationship between the notation of music and musical performance. In order to begin the undergraduate music degree as a major or minor at UALR, students should have learned to read musical notation, including treble and bass clef, scales and modes, key signatures, rhythm, meters, and basics of triadic harmony.
The UALR introductory course Music Fundamentals, MUTH 1310, is designed to acquaint students with conventions of musical notation. The course is offered during the Fall semester. Please consult the Schedule of Classes for specific days/time boss.ualr.edu/DirClasses.htm. Beginners’ courses in performance study such as Class Piano I, Class Voice I, and Guitar Reading also incorporate basics of reading notation and may be taken concurrently with MUTH 1310.
Music theory tutorials are available for free online at
Additionally, software packages such as MiBac Music Lessons www.mibac.com. and Practica Musica www.ars-nova.com/practica.html provide students with identification drills to develop fluency in musical literacy. This software is available for purchase.
For more information, including course descriptions for music theory courses, please consult the entry for the Music Department in the UALR Undergraduate Catalog www.ualr.edu/provost/catalog.
Students who are already familiar with basic music theory and wish to earn credit by examination in music theory rather than taking a course should consult the information at the UALR Office of Testing Services under “Music” Departmental Examination Program. Music examinations are currently offered for Music Fundamentals (MUTH 1310); Music Theory I (MUTH 2381) and Music Theory II (MUTH 2391).