As described above, the Music Theory Placement Exam determines which section of Music Theory, Aural Skills and Sight Singing you will be placed into; thus it is required of all students who wish to enroll in the core music theory curriculum. Students who wish to try to place out of one of more of those courses must also complete our Advanced Placement Exam in Music Theory.
Incoming students who have had considerable experience in music theory, ear training and sight singing and who wish to be considered for advanced placement are invited to complete our AP Exam in Music Theory. This exam is required of all transfer students (as is the regular Placement Exam). The AP exam consists of two parts: (1) a Theory Skills portion that must be downloaded from the Placement Exam website and submitted to Professor Biringer <firstname.lastname@example.org> by ground mail or email no later August 31, and (2) an Aural Skills portion that will be administered during Welcome Week (location, date, and time TBA). The Written Skills exam will be downloadable beginning July 15. Students who do not return the exam by the indicated date will not be considered for advanced placement. Complete instructions for taking the exam and for returning it to us can be found on the linked page. The Aural Skills exam covers aural identification of intervals and interval chains, dictation of rhythm, melody, and harmony, and error detection. To determine whether students with absolute pitch recall are also able to hear functional relationships, the entire Aural Skills exam is transposed.
On the basis of their scores on the regular placement exam, selected students will be invited to audition for advanced placement in Sight Singing. Sight-singing auditions will be scheduled in Waterman House during Welcome Week (date and time TBA). You will be notified during the first week of September of your audition time. There is nothing you need to prepare for this 5-minute audition.
Click to enter the AP MUSIC THEORY PLACEMENT EXAM site
Students who have taken the College Board AP-Music Theory Exam or IB-Music exams sometimes ask whether they also need to take Lawrence’s AP Music Theory exam if they seek advanced placement. The answer is yes. We encourage you to read the university’s policies on advanced placement exams especially as they pertain to the awarding of college credit based on a minimum score on these exams. Please be advised, however, that although the theory department takes these scores into consideration, a high score on a standardized AP exam does not alone guarantee advanced placement in Lawrence’s theory curriculum.