University of Idaho Brass Tech Syllabus


PHONE: 970.988.3838 (emergency only)
OFFICE HOURS (Rm. 307): Wednesday from 130pm to 330pm


Weekly Lecture

Tuesdays, 8:30am, Room 123

Weekly Applied Class

Thursdays, 8:30am, Room 123

Weekly Lab Band

Fridays, 8:30am, Room 216


Learn and integrate – Students will:

  • Understand and appreciate the cultural and historical context of the instruments they are learning

  • Understand, integrate and apply your music theory, history, and literature knowledge to the coursework of study

  • Develop fundamental performance techniques for trumpet, horn, trombone, euphonium, and tuba.

  • Translate learned skills into pedagogical techniques

Think and create – Students will:

  • Demonstrate knowledge of advanced techniques, reference materials, and appropriate repertoire related to brass performance

  • Achieve and demonstrate basic playing proficiency, including correct embouchure formation, characteristic tone production, and proper fingering and holding position.

Communicate – Students will:

  • Demonstrate ability to visually and aurally diagnose performance problems

  • Implement effective pedagogical techniques for beginning brass students

Practice citizenship – Students will:

  • Give respect freely to all members of the course

  • Earn respect through punctuality, preparation, professionalism, and attentiveness

Clarify purpose and perspective – Students will:

  • Explore the role that music plays in your life through self-inquiry, readings, discussions, and preparation


This course is designed to teach the fundamentals of brass pedagogy and performance for music education majors. The course consists of two components: applied study on brass instruments, and study/discussion of current brass pedagogy and methods.

REQUIRED MATERIALS (purchase at university book store)

  • Bailey, Wayne, Partick Miles, Alan Siebert, William Stanley, and Thomas Stein. Teaching Brass: A Resource Manual, 2nd ed. Boston: McGraw-Hill Higher Education, 2008.

  • Vining, David. Teaching Brass: A Guide for Student and Teachers. Flagstaff: Mountain Peak Music, 2010.

  • Biba, Gregory. Band Instrument Quick Fix Repair Solutions. Chicago: GIA Publications, Inc., 2006.
  • Additional Readings to be assigned

  • One large , 2-3” three ring binder


  • Williams, Richard & Jeff King (1998). Foundations for Superior Performance: Conductor Score. San Diego, CA: Kjos Music Company.

  • Froseth, James O. (2006). Home Helper for Band: Teacher’s Reference and Resource Edition. Chicago, IL: GIA.

  • Pilafian, Sam & Patrick Sheridan (2001). The Breathing Gym. Mesa AZ: Focus On Music.

  • Biba, G. (2002). Band Instrument “Quick Fix” Repair Solutions. Chicago: GIA.


Attendance, 100 points

Assignments, 650 points
– 10 assignments, 50 points each
– practice videos, 50 points each (due prior to each playing test)

Performance & Teaching Participation, 300 points
– 3 playing tests, 50 points each
– 2 peer teaching opportunities, 50 points each
– 1 large group teaching video, 50 points

Midterm Exam, 100 points

Final Exam, 150 points

Notebook and Resource Collection, 200 points
– Complete Notebook, 100 points
– First Day Take Home Handout, 100 points

Total Points: 1500 points


Attendance and Participation

You are expected to attend all classes, as learning in the class is enhanced by the attendance of all. You are allowed one (1) unexcused absence. Subsequent unexcused absences may result in the lowering of your final grade by 5%. Missed exams, quizzes, class teaching, and notebooks may only be taken in the case of a University Excused Absence. Students missing exams or assignments due to unexcused absence will not receive a grade higher than a C on that particular exam or assignment.

Peer Teaching

Students will participate in two (2) teaching segments throughout the semester. These lessons will be based on skills and concepts to be developed, consistent with the goals and activities of a beginning brass class. The student will also produce one (1) large group teaching video. They will display their pedagogical knowledge to the class on a brass topic of their choice. This video should be no more than minutes and must be concise and practical enough to help a beginning brass player. It can be similar to a Vining video.

Playing Exams

Students will perform playing tests on instruments they have studied during class. Playing exams can include scales, warm-up exercises, and musical selections from method books and texts. These exams will be evaluated according to a performance rubric to be provided, and will take place throughout the semester as indicated in the course schedule in the syllabus

Written Exams

Two (2) written exams – Midterm and Final – will be administered to determine understanding of conceptual material covered throughout the semester. Study topics and/or materials will be provided in advance.

Practice Videos

You will provide three practice videos that you will upload via unlisted YouTube (I will show you how to do this). These videos will explore your ability to practice your instrument prior to your performance exams. You will demonstrate a proper warmup and play through all material covered in class up to that point. The video should go no longer than 7 to 9 minutes, perhaps as little as 5 minutes depending on your efficiency.


All assignments are available through BBLearn and are due on the indicated Sunday nights at 1159pm and to be uploaded to BBLearn for grading. If they are not uploaded, I will NOT grade them.

Class Notebook and Resource Collection

The class notebook will be a compilation of class notes, observations, handouts provided, and other materials from class. The notebook can serve as a useful reference tool during the student’s professional career. Notebooks should be at least two (2) inches with three (3) rings. The notebook will include a table of contents and the syllabus for this class. More information regarding the organization and topics included in the notebook will be provided.

Students will be expected to collect resources relative to brass teaching and performance. These resources can be: journal articles, websites, textbooks and guides, or other approved materials of brass pedagogy. For each resource, students will write a brief summary of its contents and uses. The collection will be included in the Class Notebook and also disseminated to your classmates for their perusal.

By the final, you will have collected 5 outside resources per instrument you deem necessary for a beginning brass player to know. Do not rely solely: on the internet. Peer reviewed journal articles are an exceptional resource and expected;

The Horn Call from the International Horn Society
ITG Journal from the International Trumpet Guild
ITEA Journal from the International Tuba Euphonium Association
ITA Journal from the International Trombone Association
Historic Brass Society Journal
The Instrumentalist
The Grove Dictionary of Musical Instruments
look for more…

Professional Conduct

This course is part of a series of professional preparation courses. As such you are expected to conduct yourself with a high level of professionalism at all times when acting as a member of this class. These expectations include, but are not limited to, full preparation and participation in class, appropriate professional attire when peer teaching, cell phones/iPhones/etc. are turned completely off, and prompt and regular attendance. If you have any doubt about the level of professionalism regarding attire or behavior that you are about to undertake, then it is best not to take it.

Change Statement

The instructor reserves the right to make adjustments to the Syllabus and Detailed Course Outline as necessary. Students will be alerted to all changes in advance.

Detailed Course Outline



Academic Honesty

Cheating: copying an assignment, lifting answers from a classmate’s exam, bringing an identical exam or answers to a multiple choice exam to the test, having notes or other resources (calculators, handhelds, note cards) not allowed by the teacher, including any comments or key words written on hat bills, under wristwatches, or entered into cellular phone or calculator memories. Plagiarism: not crediting another individual for his or her work. This includes not citing quotes, paraphrased ideas, summaries, photographs, images, maps or websites you may have used for research. Plagiarism extends to short papers, longer research papers, presentations of any sort including websites and Power Point presentations. Lifting any blocks of text without proper citation is considered plagiarism, as is using a photograph without crediting the news agency or individual responsible for the original photo.

Disability Statement


Reasonable accommodations are available for students who have documented temporary or permanent disabilities. All accommodations must be approved through Disability Support Services, located in the Idaho Commons Building, Room 306, in order to notify your instructor(s) as soon as possible regarding accommodation(s) needed for the course. Contact DSS at 208-885‐6307, email or go to

Civility Clause

In any environment in which people interact in meaningful ways to gain knowledge, it is essential that each member feel as free and safe as possible in their participation. To this end, it will be course policy and expected that everyone will be treated with mutual respect. We certainly do not have to agree, but everyone deserves to feel they are heard. We learn by engaging in constructive evidence-based dialogue. Therefore, we shall establish in this course a general understanding that members of this class (including students, instructors, professors, and teaching assistants) will be respected and respectful to one another in discussion, in action, in teaching, and in learning.

Tutor Center

Tutoring & College Success supports students in their educational endeavors by providing academic and personal success strategies through tutoring, structured courses, workshops and presentations, and individual advising.

Student Code of Conduct

The university disciplinary system is part of the educational process of students focusing on behavior within a community.  Sanctions are imposed for violations to the Student Code of Conduct to teach students how to be better and more responsible members of a community.

Firearm Policy

The University of Idaho bans firearms from its property with only limited exceptions. One exception applies to persons who hold a valid Idaho enhanced concealed carry license, provided those firearms remain concealed at all times. If an enhanced concealed carry license holder’s firearm is displayed, other than in necessary self-defense, it is a violation of University policy. Please contact local law enforcement (call 911) to report firearms on University property.


University level learning outcomes broadly describe expected and desired consequences of learning through integrated curricular and co-curricular experiences. The outcomes become an

expression of the desired attributes of an educated person and guide coherent, integrated and intentional educational experiences. They provide us with a basis for ongoing assessment to continuously improve teaching and learning.

  1. Learn and integrate – Through independent learning and collaborative study, attain, use, and develop knowledge in the arts, humanities, sciences, and social sciences, with disciplinary specialization and the ability to integrate information across disciplines.

  2. Think and create – Use multiple thinking strategies to examine real-world issues, explore creative avenues of expression, solve problems, and make consequential decisions.

  3. Communicate – Acquire, articulate, create and convey intended meaning using verbal and non-verbal methods of communication that demonstrate respect and understanding in a complex society.

  4. Clarify purpose and perspective – Explore one’s life purpose and meaning through transformational experiences that foster an understanding of self, relationships, and diverse global perspectives.

  5. Practice citizenship – Apply principles of ethical leadership, collaborative engagement, socially responsible behavior, respect for diversity in an interdependent world, and a service-oriented commitment to advance and sustain local and global communities.