The University of Southampton

MUSI1007 Fundamentals of Analysis, Counterpoint and Harmony

Module Overview

This module will provide you with a firm understanding of the theory and practice of the basic rules and principles of Western tonal music that will be invaluable to later courses. During the module you will study and use species counterpoint in two and three parts, as well as four-part chorale textures in the style of J. S. Bach. After honing these skills you will use them to analyse the harmony of Classical music, learning to identify chords and non-harmonic tones, and to describe functions in context using figured bass, Roman numerals and the terminology of functional harmonic analysis. Finally, you will apply this knowledge to the harmonisation of late 18th-Century melodies.

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

introduce the principles of 18th-century harmony and counterpoint ? review the terminology of harmonic, melodic and formal analysis, and to apply this to appropriate repertoire ? develop skills in stylistic melodic harmonisation

Learning Outcomes

Knowledge and Understanding

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • the basic rules of species counterpoint in two and three parts
  • four-part chorale textures in the style of J. S. Bach
  • harmonies and harmonic functions in late 18th-century music
  • terminology appropriate to the harmonic-formal analysis of tonal music
Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • analyse the form of Classical music themes and short pieces
  • identify chords and non-harmonic tones, and describe their functions in context
  • harmonise stylistically late 18th-Century melodies


Species Counterpoint (after J. J. Fux, Gradus ad Parnassum) in 2 and 3 parts ? Chorale harmonisation in the style of J. S. Bach. ? Figured bass and Roman numerals. ? Harmonic function and cadential progressions. ? Harmonisation of late 18th-Century melodies.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

Weekly lectures will introduce concepts that will be explored further in weekly practical seminars. Regular formative work will be assigned. There will be five formal assessments covering all of the areas studied: four shorter formal assessments worth 15% each, and a final longer formal assessment worth 40%.

Wider reading or practice30
Follow-up work30
Completion of assessment task36
Preparation for scheduled sessions30
Total study time150

Resources & Reading list

Bach: Four-Part Chorale Settings (any, in any edition). Musical works

Anna Butterworth. Harmony in Practice. 

Eric Taylor. The AB Guide to Music Theory, Part 1 & Part 2. 

The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians (for musical terminology). 

Arcangelo Corelli: Complete Trio Sonatas and Violin Sonatas (Dover Books). Musical works

Walter Piston. Harmony. 

Johann-Joseph Fux. The Study of Counterpoint. 



MethodPercentage contribution
Assessment 60%
Project 40%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External

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