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Peer Review

by Jose Rodriguez Alvira


Overall Numeric Rating:

5 stars
Content Quality: 5 stars
Effectiveness: 5 stars
Ease of Use: 5 stars
Reviewed: May 31, 2006 by Music
Overview: This site is a broad collection of music theory and analysis Flash learning objects. The learning objects on the site are divided into three categories: Tutorials, Exercises and Reference. The Tutorials include Reading Music, Intervals, Scales, Chords and Harmonic Functions. The Exercises include Rhythmic Dictation, Clef Reading, Intervals, Scales, Key Signatures, Chords, Harmonic Functions and Jazz. Reference includes Reading Music, Intervals, Scales, Chords and Articles (the Articles sub-category includes several analysis objects.)
Type of Material: Flash learning objects.
Recommended Uses: This site would serve as support material for a fundamental music theory course.
Technical Requirements: A current browser and current Flash plugin.
Identify Major Learning Goals: The Primary learning goal of this site is to introduce the fundamental concepts of Western music theory. A secondary learning goal would be the development of fundamental analysis skills.
Target Student Population: Students in a music theory, keyboard, or analysis course, high school through
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills: Students need to know how to read music to use this site.

Evaluation and Observation

Content Quality

Rating: 5 stars
Strengths: The information on the site is accurate and correctly notated within topic areas represented. The quality of the Flash animations is high.
Concerns: None.

Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool

Rating: 5 stars
Strengths: The information is broken up into short sections that are easy to retain. The animations are clear and often do not need the accompanying text to understand. The site has great potential for reusability, individual parts of the site could be inserted in a number of ways into an instructors teaching sequence. Use of the search engine makes it easy to bring collections of modules into an existing courses. Granularity of site materials facilitates reuse. There is a pedagogical sequence but the user is free to browse.
Concerns: Depth of coverage is sometimes uneven between slices within a module. Students using the site as a "stand-alone" tool may have difficulty finding an appropriate sequence.

Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty

Rating: 5 stars
Strengths: Generally speaking the site is easy to navigate. Users are encouraged to take advantage of the search engine when using the site.
Concerns: The same title is often used for different sections of the site, e.g., there is a Scales section in the Tutorials and a Scales section in the Exercises and a Scales section in Reference. This may lead a user to think that they are the same section when they are different. Navigation could be more transparent. For example, analysis and articles might be more prominently featured on the main page.

Other Issues and Comments: Some of the individual sections of this site have separate reviews in MERLOT. The reviewers appreciate the fact that the site is continually being updated and improved.

Creative Commons:
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 United States