Bachelor of Music - Orchestration Year 2 Unit Outline

Unit of Study - Orchestration

The following applies to Year Two Bachelor of Music students.

Unit Outlines

Unit Name


Unit Code


Unit Duration

Year long unit over 4 terms

Year Level




Module Code


Year Coordinator

Leonie Wobking

Unit Coordinator

Glenn Carter-Varney

Teaching Staff

Lecturer:      Leonie Wobking
Sessionals: Dr Ern Knoop, Mary Ann Mangion-Needham




Year One

Credit Points

2 per term; 8 per year
Course total = 24

Mode of Delivery

x Face to face
x Online
x Distance/independent learning (un-timetabled)
x Full-time
x Part-time
x External

Delivery/ Contact Hours

Lecture 1 hour
Personal Study recommended - 2 hours


Bachelor of Music

Resource Requirements

  • Software
  • Computing resource requirements
  • Technical Help


Unit Aims

This unit aims to apply theoretical and aural knowledge and skills in writing compositions to a variety of instrumental groups and musical genres. Students will extend and employ previous knowledge of instrumentation to create original works at a professional standard. Implementation of advanced techniques will be used in creating themes, emotional motifs, texture, timbre, and dynamics in compositions.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students are expected to be able to:

  1. Demonstrate strong compositional techniques of a high standard for both individual and professional purposes.
  2. Display knowledge of different stylistic challenges by being able to create music works in a variety of genres using rhythmical structure and instrumental techniques.
  3. Research, analysis and evaluation skills in use of unconventional and conventional methods and techniques used in creating compositions.
  4. Demonstrate contrapuntal and part writing skills in music creation.
  5. Display knowledge of technology used to produce professional compositions.

Teaching Outline

Year 2


Term One

  • Introduction, Theme and Endings
  • The Development, Recapitulation and Coda
  • Phrases and Repetition in Music
  • Passing Notes and Minor Chords Scales
  • Basic Melodic Skill Development

Term Two

  • Composing a Song
  • Words & Melody     
  • Form in Melody Writing
  • Compositional Ideas: Hints from the Dean, Dr Ern Knoop

Term Three

  • Binary Form
  • Ternary Form
  • Simple Rondo
  • Modern Rondo (or Rondo Sonata) Form
  • Fugue
  • Various Other Forms

Term Four

  • Writing a Melody in 10 Minutes
  • A Composer’s Resource Bank
  • Melodies: Some useful hints from the Dean

Prescribed and recommended readings:

Required textbook(s)

  • Online Books (MOODLE)
  • AGME – Orchestration Textbook
  • AGME – Theory Textbook
  • AGME – Finale/Sibelius Textbooks
  • Assignment Guidelines (4)
  • Lecture notes from your lecturer relating to Orchestration for extra reading material.
  • Oxford Music Online, a subscription to Grove Music Online includes The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians 2/e, The New Grove Dictionary of Opera, the new Grove Dictionary of Jazz 2/e, The Oxford Companion to Music and The Oxford Dictionary of Music 2/e, plus updated content bibliographies, specially-commissioned articles only available online, and new and revised entries from the forthcoming The Grove Dictionary of American Music.
  • JSTOR Journals and book subscriptions
  • video tutorials

Reference Materials
Online streaming videos available of live tutorials.
Additional material on DVD if requested are given/posted to students in groups, upon completion of viewing students are required to return DVDs and then they will be supplied the next group of DVD’s.

  • Exploring Music
  • Contemporary music course by Clive Cockburn
  • Creative Inspirations by Mark Mothersbaugh

Reading List

  • Melodies and their Treatment: A.J. Leckie
  • Chords Scales and Simple Improvisation: Books 1+2. by Michael Furstner
  • Blues Basics for Beginners by Michael Furstner
  • Scales and Arpeggios for the Jazz Pianist by Michael Furstner
  • A Guide to Rock and Pop
  • A complete idiot’s guide to Arranging and Orchestration by Michael Miller
  • Teaching popular music by Peter Dunbar-Hall
  • The Craft of Lyric Writing by Sheila Davis
  • Rock, Jazz & Pop Arranging by Daryl Runswick
  • Writing music for hit songs by Jai Josefs
  • Jazz Improvisation 1 – Tonal and Rhythmic Principles by John Mehegan
  • Melody in Songwriting by Jack Perricone (Berkelee Press)
  • Harmony by Mark Sarnecki

Stephen Blum. "Composition." Grove Music Online. Oxford Music Online. Oxford University Press. Web. 22 Sep. 2014. <>.
John Potter. "Singer-songwriter." Grove Music Online. Oxford Music Online. Oxford University Press. Web. 22 Sep. 2014. <>.
Thomas S. Hischak and Dai Griffiths. "Lyrics." Grove Music Online. Oxford Music Online. Oxford University Press. Web. 22 Sep. 2014. <>.


Student assessment 

Assessment Type
(e.g. Assignment - 2000 word essay (specify topic)
Examination (specify length and format))

When assessed
(eg Week 5)

(% of total unit marks)

Learning Outcomes Assessed

Assessment 1
Type: Composition writing
Word length: n/a
Topic: Composition Strings and Woodwind
Students are to compose two pieces using different musical styles or genres: one composition of 16 bars and one composition of 24 bars.

Term 1 Week 9


1, 2, 5

Assessment 2
Type: Composition writing
Word length: n/a
Topic: Composition Brass and Rhythm/Percussion

Students are to compose two pieces using different musical styles or genres: both 32 bars.

Term 2
Week 9


1, 2, 5

Assessment 3
Type: Composition writing
Word length: n/a
Topic: Composition Vocal Choir and Ensemble
Students are to write two compositions: one composition of 32 bars that contains a minimum of 4 parts and one composition short theme with 3 variations to a total of 64 bars.

Term 3
Week 9


1, 2, 4, 5

Assessment 4
Type: Composition writing
Word length: 500
Topic: Major composition and analysis
4a. Create a composition of a minimum of 64 bars for at least 4 instruments.
4b. Prepare a critical musical analysis on the style chosen. Discuss your rationale for choosing these devices, and any sources that inspired your initial choices.

Term 4 Week 9


1, 2, 3, 4, 5


Graduate Attributes

Successfully completing this unit will contribute to the recognition of attainment of the following graduate attributes.

A. Research, critical thinking and inquiry

Learning Outcomes

A1. adjust knowledge to new circumstances to problem solve creatively and with imagination in public performance/professional practice

1, 2, 4

A2. research, analyse, evaluate, think critically, organize evidence clearly and logically in a range of circumstances, including written work, performance and professional practice

 1, 2, 3

B. Knowledge and Skills


B1. knowledge of music technologies required in performance/professional practice


B2. advanced knowledge of music theory, aural, and performance/professional practice in either solo or group settings


C. Communication


C1. communicate effectively to a variety of audiences using oral,  written, audio and visual applications to extend learning, (including while directing ensemble groups, instrumental tutoring,  and other professional practice), and utilising  assessment, negotiation and understanding

1, 2, 4

C2. ability to contribute to teams and resolve conflicts whilst supervising group tasks, performing or other professional practice


D. Independent Learning


D1. independent learning in a self-directed manner while being able to reflect on and evaluate work practices and performance to achieve goals

2, 3

E. Creative and Professional Understanding


E1. demonstrate professional understanding and respect for standards of current music knowledge, pedagogy, performance/professional practice.

2, 3, 4

E2. open to innovative concepts, procedures and philosophies in performance/professional practice and application of creativity.