Academic Catalog


Foothill College Course Outline of Record

Foothill College Course Outline of Record
Heading Value
Effective Term: Summer 2023
Units: 2
Hours: 2 lecture, 1 laboratory per week (36 total per quarter)
Advisory: Concurrent enrollment in MUS 12A; this course is included in the Voice Class Applied Performance family of activity courses.
Degree & Credit Status: Degree-Applicable Credit Course
Foothill GE: Non-GE
Transferable: CSU/UC
Grade Type: Letter Grade (Request for Pass/No Pass)
Repeatability: Not Repeatable

Student Learning Outcomes

  • A successful student will understand and apply basic methods of vocal production.
  • The successful student will apply proper singing techniques to public performance.


An introduction to the fundamental techniques of vocal production and performance. Group vocal instruction with the potential to sing in a variety of musical styles. Emphasis on understanding the foundation of a healthy vocal technique and integrating that technique into songs. Topics include warm-up techniques, breath support, tone production, musical phrasing, and diction/text communication, as well as an introduction to standard vocal repertoire and associated performance practices.

Course Objectives

The student will be able to:

  1. Create a free, open, and sustainable singing sound
  2. Describe and demonstrate correct breath support to sustain a vocal line
  3. Describe and demonstrate basic resonant vocal production
  4. Demonstrate articulation appropriate to the repertoire studied
  5. Explain basic terminology for elements of vocal production
  6. Synthesize a personal method of vocal warm-ups for a daily practice routine
  7. Understand and communicate the text of the repertoire studied
  8. Apply basic vocal technique and musicianship in performance

Course Content

  1. Technical skills
    1. Breath support
      1. Posture
      2. Controlled inhalation and expansion of breath capacity
      3. Ability to maintain support throughout musical phrase
    2. Tone production
      1. Awareness of jaw and tongue tension and skills to relax, lifted soft palate
      2. Use of natural resonance without laryngeal involvement
      3. Awareness of vocal range
    3. Articulation
      1. Develop the ability to use articulators in basic songs
      2. Explore the use of articulation in text expression
  2. Communication of text
    1. Understand and describe the meaning of the song text or lyrics
    2. Apply vocal technique to communicate the text meaning
  3. Develop basic daily warm-up skills incorporating techniques listed above
  4. Basic song repertoire: music from early Italian vocal exercises to contemporary song literature; may include classical, folk, pop, musical theater, and will vary depending on the vocal and musical backgrounds of the students enrolled
  5. Music reading skills
    1. Rhythmic values
    2. Pitch
    3. Meter
    4. Music terminology related to dynamics, tempo, and interpretation
  6. Preparation and performance of repertoire
    1. Application of principles in:
      1. Vocal technique
      2. Musicality
      3. Communication of text
  7. Performance of group and solo repertoire as assigned

Lab Content

  1. Supervised rehearsal of assignments and projects
  2. Ensemble and solo coaching
  3. Exercises in expression and connection to text
  4. Repertoire building and exploration

Special Facilities and/or Equipment

1. Large classroom with piano.
2. Quality recording equipment.
3. Audio/visual equipment; internet available computer/media equipped classroom.
4. When taught via Foothill Global Access: on-going access to computer with email software and capabilities; email address; JavaScript-enabled internet browsing software.

Method(s) of Evaluation

Methods of Evaluation may include but are not limited to the following:

Class participation applying techniques covered from warm-ups through performance
Progress in repertoire assigned: vocal technique, musicality, text
Performance of songs demonstrating improvement in accuracy of pitch, rhythm, breath support, resonance, diction, communication, and expression of text
Periodic quizzes on course content
Final exam will consist of a performance of repertoire developed during the quarter

Method(s) of Instruction

Methods of Instruction may include but are not limited to the following:

Lecture and demonstration
Individual and group singing
Listening examples
Vocal performances

Representative Text(s) and Other Materials

Hamedy, Jennifer. The Art of Singing. 2009.

Although the textbooks listed are older than the suggested standard, they remain seminal in the field.

One of the following may be selected for supplemental use during the quarter:
Peckham, Anne. The Contemporary Singer: Elements of Vocal Technique, 2nd ed. 2010.
Peckham, Anne. Vocal Workouts for the Contemporary Singer. 2006.
Peckham, Anne. Singer’s Handbook: A Total Workout in One Hour or Less. 2004.

Types and/or Examples of Required Reading, Writing, and Outside of Class Assignments

  1. Review of handouts and relevant reading materials
  2. Reading and study of the textbook
  3. Keeping a self-evaluation journal