Areas of study: Music

Basic areas of study for GCSE music

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  • Created by: Joe Ball
  • Created on: 12-05-11 20:34

Rhythm and meter

Rhythm and meter covers:

Ways to describe the rhythm:

  • Bi-rhythmic (Two rhythms at the same time)
  • Syncopation (Notes that occur off the beat)
  • Augmentation (Doubling the amount of notes)
  • Diminution (Halving the amounts of notes)

The time signature (Meter):

      4     3     6         For instance

     4     4     8

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Melody and texture

Melody and texture covers:

Ways to decribe the melody:

  • Ostinatoes (Riffs)
  • Scalic movement (The melody moves up and down in complete scales)
  • Conjunct movement (The melody moves up and down in steps)
  • Disjunct movement (The melody moves in leaps)

Ways to describe the texture:

  • Monophonic (Melody on its own - no accompiment)
  • Homophonic (Melody and basic accompiment)
  • Polyphonic (Melody and lots of accompiment)
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Timbre and dynamics

Timbre and dynamics cover:


  • What instruments you can hear
  • What family the instrument belongs to
  • what technique the instrument uses

Dynamics (Volume):

  • pp
  • p
  • mp
  • mf
  • f
  • ff
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Harmony and tonality

Harmony and tonality covers:

Ways to describe the harmony in the piece:

  • Consonant (The piece sounds good and it doesnt clash)
  • Dissonant (The piece doesnt sound so good and clashes)

Ways to describe the tonality:

  • Major (The piece is happy)
  • Minor (The piece is sad)
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This was helpful although you missed out an area of study which is structure and form

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