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Music 232

Diatonic Harmony– Spring Semester 2023


MWF 10:00-10:50a, CA136


Instructor: Jono Kornfeld


Office Hours (CA 166F): M, 11:00a-12:00p; and other times by appointment


email link


Graduate Assistant: Mona Shahnavaz; email link


Remote Learning Procedures

(should the need arise)




Health & Safety Commitments


Everyone’s health and safety is our paramount concern at SF State. We ask every member of our campus community to join a pledge to make and follow plans to keep fellow students, faculty, and staff safe and well. Feeling confident, safe and well will help you focus on your academic success. To participate in this class, all students are expected to: 

  • stay informed on the most up-to-date information related to SF State’s COVID-19 response and Campus Comeback plan
  • plan ahead for possible class disruptions due to COVID-19 or other unexpected events, such as unhealthy air quality caused by smoke
  • take care of yourself and others by staying home when you aren’t feeling well or believe you have been exposed to COVID-19, and 
  • follow all required health and safety guidelines, including verifying your proof of vaccination or exemption status before coming to class; and wearing a multilayered mask over your nose and mouth at all times when indoors on campus; and wash your hands as often as possible (i.e. soap and water, hand sanitizer). 

For more information about SF State’s response to COVID-19 and how you can keep yourself and others safe and well, visit the Campus Comeback Website. To plan for how you will maintain your academic success when unexpected events disrupt regular teaching and learning activities, follow the information on the course syllabus and consult the Keep Learning guide.

Resilient Teaching & Learning Plan


Our campus community is often called to demonstrate compassionate resiliency by adapting and responding to a number of unexpected events, or disruptions, such as personal illness or injury, the COVID-19 pandemic, or unhealthy air quality and power outages due to wildfires. A disruption is a situation that will prevent you, me, or the entire class from participating in 'class as usual' for a reason we could not have predicted at the beginning of the semester.  Our goal as a learning community is to do our best to keep teaching and learning with as little interruption as possible.


If something along these lines happens, we should be able: to maintain communication and send assignments via email; use the web syllabus and iLearn to access assignments; possibly adjust the curriculum; use SFSU’s Zoom app to hold live meetings and/or view recorded lectures.


Most importantly, I am committed to supporting students when they are affected by uncontrollable circumstances in order to keep our in-person and virtual learning environments nurturing and inviting places.



Tonal Harmony – Textbook, 7th or 8th Edition

Kostka/Payne, McGraw Hill

An e-book version is fine


A College-Level Music Dictionary:

Oxford, Harvard, etc.


A Music Notation Manual: Norton, Alfred, etc.


The prerequisite for this course is MUS 231; This course is a prerequisite for MUS 233


This course focuses on diatonic harmony & structures associated with Western European and more-recent American music. The main source material will be from the 18th and 19th centuries, but more recent styles, such as jazz, rock, folk and pop will also be included - Bach to the Beatles and beyond! We will explore how harmony, melody, and counterpoint interrelate through four-part harmony textures (such as the Bach Chorale), but also through textures like solo, chamber & orchestral, as well as modern-style lead sheet (chart) examples. The goal of this class is to enable students to analyze and/or compose music in the above-mentioned styles, and to have a command of the associated vocabulary.


Your written work will consist of a mixture between homework, exams, and separate composition/analysis projects.


Each assignment and exam will have its own grade. You can also look up your grades to date on Canvas, where information will be posted periodically in a spreadsheet. Grades are listed via an assigned alias to protect your privacy.


Attendance: 10%

Meaningful attendance (see class participation below) goes hand-in-hand with better learning and retention. Being in a classroom community on a regular basis can deepen one's experience with the material, where we can interact, ask questions, listen to music and each other, make connections, and support one and other. After the first week, there will be a sign-in sheet on the piano at the beginning of each class. Latecomers can check in with me at the end of class. You are allowed three unexcused absences before it starts counting against your grade. Three unexcused late arrivals will count as one unexcused absence. There are all kinds of good/reasonable excuses for missing class or being late, such as: religious holidays, being sick, caring for someone who is sick, a family emergency, occasional professional obligation, transportation problems, mental health concerns, etc. If you miss class or are late and have an excuse, I ask that you inform me as soon as possible (email is best). Out of respect for your privacy, if the excuse feels personal in nature, you do not have to be too specific. Similarly, I do not require doctor's notes and the like. We will rely on the honor system should you need to explain an absence or late arrival, but it is essential to communicate.


Class Participation/Communication: 5%

Participation means arriving/joining on time (unless it is beyond your control), being fully present and engaged, not behaving in a distracted or distracting manner (such as using electronic devices for non-class related reasons), and very-importantly, treating others with respect. Please practice professional-level communication during class, and in written correspondence.


Keyboard Performance Demonstration: 5% (audio example)

This can be done in person, or via an emailed video (or link to a video)


Midterm piano composition assignment: 10%

Details will be announced.


Midterm Exam (in class): 10%

Details TBA


Final Exam (in class): 15%

Details TBA


Homework: 45%

Homework (on paper) is due on the day announced, by the end of class (via email by 11:59pm during remote instruction). It will consist of mainly small analysis and composition-style exercises. Advance notification requesting an extension is fine in most cases, but unnotified late assignments are not automatically accepted. Please staple multiple-page assignments so nothing gets lost. The lowest two grades will be dropped. Homework collaboration option.


Redo Policy: Unless otherwise specified, I encourage you to redo any homework assignment that gets less than a 93%. The score of the redone version of the assignment will be averaged with the original score for a final assignment grade, with a maximum possible grade of 93%.  Redone assignments are due two class periods after the original assignment is returned (unless otherwise arranged). Redoing an assignment means that you either make clear corrections on the original assignment, or that you submit a copied-over, corrected version of the original assignment on a separate piece of paper. For the latter, please include the original assignment along with the redo; you don't have to copy over portions of the original assignment that were done correctly. This does not apply to exams, which cannot be redone.


**Please note: the above percentages are subject to redistribution**


Missed assignments, quizzes or exams: in the event of an unforeseen absence, make-up exams or assignment-extensions will be granted for extenuating circumstances on an individual basis. It is important that you notify me as soon as possible in cases like this.


Extra credit assignments (optional): may be assigned and will be announced in class and on the syllabus.


Plagiarism: While some collaboration is expected and productive, the bulk of your assignments and definitely any compositions must be done individually unless otherwise specified.  Violations will be subject to the University's Code of Conduct as it relates to such matters.


Please note the following from the SFSU Bulletin: To receive credit toward completion of the degree requirements, a grade of C (a C- does NOT count) or better is required for all music courses in the Bachelor of Arts in Music major...To receive credit toward completion of the degree requirements, a grade of C or better is required for all music courses in the Bachelor of Music major.


Disability access

Students with disabilities who need reasonable accommodations are encouraged to contact the instructor.  The Disability Programs and Resource Center (DPRC) is available to facilitate the reasonable accommodations process. The DPRC is located in the Student Service Building and can be reached by telephone (voice/415-338-2472, video phone/415-335-7210) or by email (


Student disclosures of sexual violence

SF State fosters a campus free of sexual violence including sexual harassment, domestic violence, dating violence, stalking, and/or any form of sex or gender discrimination.  If you disclose a personal experience as an SF State student, the course instructor is required to notify the Title IX Coordinator by completing the report form available at, emailing or calling 338-2032.


To disclose any such violence confidentially, contact:

*The SAFE Place - (415) 338-2208;

*Counseling and Psychological Services Center - (415) 338-2208;

*For more information on your rights and available resources:


Attendance is factored into your grade as stated above. It is your responsibility to get notes from any class you miss. Disruptive, distracting, or disrespectful behavior will not be tolerated and may result in you being asked to leave the classroom or a remote meeting (if the lecture is remote). 


There may be instances where we need to make individual, special arrangements.  In these cases, it is best that we do so with confirmation emails. In the event that we have made a special arrangement, please make sure we have at least done so in writing.  If you write to me, please communicate as clearly and professionally as possible.  While this is a music class, you are expected to practice college-level, professional communication standards in your written and oral communication. Make sure your SFSU email is set up to forward to your regular/personal email address.


The syllabus (including assignments, exam and grade distributions) and downloads are subject to revisions as the semester progresses.  Check the syllabus web page often, and your email, and listen for announcements in class.  Please do not download the lecture notes and/or assignments all at once in case revisions are made.


In an ongoing effort to nurture your notation skills, all work handed in must be written in pencil, or via a tablet (i.e. by hand). Assignments using computer notation are not acceptable, unless arranged in advance. When using staff paper for any assignment, the paper should have no left- or right-side bar lines and have no clefs printed on it. Use this link to print staff paper. Notation is a factor in grading. Notation errors, cross-outs, sloppy notation or analyses may lower assignment grades and/or will be handled on a discretionary basis.


Please plan to print required materials/assignments for class on a regular basis. However, it is understandable that printing could be a hardship for some, in which case we will work out an alternative so that everyone can access what they need. You should also be able to photograph or scan assignments for email submission (only during remote instruction, or by arrangement). All materials will be available through the web syllabus (and occasionally iLearn & emails) and will be PDF files.





(Week No.)

Week of

Class Topics and Downloadable Notes

(day covered–"M, W, F")

*Chapters are based on the K.P. 7th edition


Assignments and items to print

for that week with specific due day


Jan 30

Class organization, course overview

Introduction to diatonic harmony

Overtone Series Tutorial



Mozart K.331 Link  (audio)

Hide And Seek... Link  (audio)

Note stacking tutorial


Feb 6

Ch. 3: Triads, 7th chords, figured bass

Ch. 3 Reading Sheet

Chromaticism in figured bass


(M) Review/Preparation Assignment


Feb 13

Ch. 3 continued

Ch. 4: Diatonic chords

Ch. 4 Reading Sheet


(M) Ch. 3 (part I)


Feb 20

Ch. 4 continued

Ch. 5: Voice leading

Ch. 5 Reading Sheet


(M) Ch. 3 (part II): Question 2 audio; Question 3 audio


Feb 27

Ch. 5 continued

Ch. 6: Root position part writing

Ch. 6 Reading Sheet


(M) Ch. 4: Question 2 audio; Question 3 audio


March 6

Ch. 6 continued

Ch. 7: Harmonic progressions

(including 2nd level analysis)

Ch. 7 Reading Sheet

Circle of 5ths progressions/jazz (pdf)


(W) Ch. 5


March 13

Ch. 7 continued

(M) Ch. 6


(F) Midterm Exam (in class, open-note)

Midterm exam preparation guide



March 20 – 24: Spring Recess, No Class



March 27

Ch. 7 continued







April 3

Ch. 8: First inversion triads

Ch. 8 Reading Sheet

Ch. 9: Second inversion triads

Ch. 9 Reading Sheet


(M) Ch. 7


(W) Keyboard Demonstration, in person or via video  



April 10

Ch. 9 continued

Ch. 10: Cadences, phrases, periods

Ch. 10 Reading Sheet

All The Cadences... (pdf) (Audio/mp3)

Period Examples

(M) Ch. 8



April 17

Ch. 10 continued


(M) Ch. 9: Clementi audio


April 24

Ch. 10 continued


*Ch. 11: Non chord tones I

*Ch. 11 Reading Sheet

All the NCTs...(pdf)

Unornamented example (audio)

Passing Tone (audio)  *  Neighbor Tone (audio)

Suspension (audio)  *  Retard (audio)



(M) DRAFT of piano composition project due  *  Audio


The draft can be hand-written or computer-notated. It will not be graded, just marked with comments/suggestions, BUT it must be submitted in accordance with the standard homework deadline requirements





May 1

Ch. 11 continued


*Ch. 12: Non chord tones II

*Ch. 12 Reading Sheet

Appoggiatura (audio)  *  Escape Tone (audio)

Neighbor Group (audio)  *  Anticipation (audio)

Pedal Tone/Point (audio)

Embellishing a simple texture with all NCTs  *  (Audio)


*Ch. 13: The V7 chord

*Ch. 13 Reading Sheet

(M) Ch. 10, Minuet in G audio; Op. 13, ii audio





May 8

*Ch. 14: II7 and VII7 Chords

*Ch. 14 Reading Sheet

*Ch. 15: Other diatonic 7th chords

*Ch. 15 Reading Sheet

(M) Ch. 11 & 12 Combination * Audio





May 15

Ch. 18 An introduction to modulation

Culminating Perspectives; Wrap-up

Last day of classes: (F)


(M) Ch. 13, Bach WTC audio


(F) FINAL version of piano composition assignment due *  Audio

Final Exam Preparation Guide

(M, May 22, 10:15 – 12:15): Final Exam (in class, open-note)

Extra Credit Assignment (pdf of score) (audio example)

Due by Friday, May 26