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Essential Objectives

Course Syllabus

Revision Date: 19-Apr-24

Summer 2024 | MUS-2341-VU01 - Guitar I

In Person Class

Standard courses meet in person at CCV centers, typically once each week for the duration of the semester.

Location: Winooski
Credits: 3 (45 hours)
Day/Times: Tuesday, 01:00P - 04:30P
Semester Dates: 05-21-2024 to 08-06-2024
Last day to drop without a grade: 06-10-2024 - Refund Policy
Last day to withdraw (W grade): 07-08-2024 - Refund Policy
This course has started, please contact the offering academic center about registration


Gregory Matses
View Faculty Credentials

Hiring Coordinator for this course: Dana Lee

General Education Requirements

This section meets the following CCV General Education Requirement(s) for the current catalog year:
VSCS Arts & Aesthetics
  1. Many degree programs have specific general education recommendations. In order to avoid taking unnecessary classes, please consult with additional resources like your program evaluation, your academic program catalog year page, and your academic advisor.
  2. Courses may only be used to meet one General Education Requirement.

Course Description

An introduction to basic picking, fingerpicking, chords, rhythms, bass lines, and accompanying vocals on the six-string guitar. Includes such styles as folk, blues, rock, jazz, country, and classical. Students are introduced to music theory, notation, and history related to guitar. Access to a guitar is required. Open to students with no previous musical training.

Essential Objectives

1. Develop and maintain a regular musical practice.
2. Develop and apply basic plectrum (pick) and fingerpicking techniques.
3. Sight-read simple melodies and apply open chord shapes and rhythms.
4. Play pieces in a variety of styles which may include: folk, blues, rock, classical and reggae.
5. Discuss basic music theory and notation as it relates to the guitar, including chord symbols and guitar tablature.
6. Listen to and analyze a variety of guitar players and styles.

Required Technology

More information on general computer and internet recommendations is available on the CCV IT Support page. https://support.ccv.edu/general/computer-recommendations/

Please see CCV's Digital Equity Statement (pg. 45) to learn more about CCV's commitment to supporting all students access the technology they need to successfully finish their courses.

Required Textbooks and Resources

MUS-2341-VU01 Link to Textbooks/Resources Information for this course in eCampus.

The last day to use a Financial Aid Advance to purchase textbooks/books is the 3rd Tuesday of the semester. See your financial aid counselor at your academic center if you have any questions.


The class will work on fundamental technique exercises to develop a relaxed and fluid picking style. We will learn basic music theory and notation and apply these skills to playing songs in a variety of styles. We will address lead, rhythm, fingerstyle, and bass approaches to the material. Homework will consist of practicing exercises and songs, learning terminology and notation, and developing a working knowledge of the fretboard.

Evaluation Criteria

Attendance/Participation/Assignments/Quizzes 55% (graded weekly on a scale of 0-10)
Midterm Exam 15%
Final Exam 15%
Performance Project 15%

Grading Criteria

CCV Letter Grades as outlined in the Evaluation System Policy are assigned according to the following chart:

A Less than 9893
A-Less than 9390
B+Less than 9088
B Less than 8883
B-Less than 8380
C+Less than 8078
C Less than 7873
C-Less than 7370
D+Less than 7068
D Less than 6863
D-Less than 6360
FLess than 60 
NPLess than 600

Weekly Schedule

Week/ModuleTopic  Readings  Assignments


introductions / guitar basics / tuning
right & left hand technique / alternate picking / alternation


Week 1 handouts / video lecture


practice The Hands of Time daily w/metronome ! **(for the duration of the semester) practice tuning



rhythm notation – time signatures, notes & rests
chords / strumming


Week 2 handouts / video lecture


Rhythm Notation Exercises
Open Chords & Rhythms



song(s) #1: folk & country


Week 3 handouts / video lecture


practice song(s) #1



pitch – staff notation
sight-reading: strings 1 & 2


Week 4 handouts / video lecture


Music Notation Exercises #1
1st (E) & 2nd (B) String Note Reading and Songs



sight-reading: strings 3 & 4
ties & dots
song(s) #2: 1950’s progression


Week 5 handouts / video lecture


3rd (G) & 4th (D) String Note Reading and Songs
Music Notation Exercises #2
practice song(s) #2 / exercises



half & whole steps / octaves
accidentals (sharps, flats, naturals) / chromatic scale
sight-reading: strings 5 & 6
song(s) #3: Spiritual


Week 6 handouts / video lecture


Music Notation Exercises #3
5th (A) & 6th (E) String Note Reading and Songs
practice song(s) #3



Slurs (hammer-ons, pull-offs, slides, etc.)
articulation / syncopation
song(s) #4: Cuban rhythms
midterm review


Week 7 handouts / video lecture


practice slurs / song(s) #4
study for midterm – Midterm Review



midterm exam


Week 8 handouts / video lecture


practice harmonics
practice Minuet: first 8 measures of your respective part



scales & keys / improvisation
song(s) #5: gospel & reggae / bass lines


Week 9 handouts / video lecture


Major Scale Patterns and Improvisation & the Lead Guitarist
song(s) #5
practice Minuet (Krieger) measures 9-16



fingerstyle/fingerpicking – alternating bass
song(s) #6:
chord spellings
muting techniques
song(s) #7: classic rock


Week 10 handouts / video lecture


song(s) #6
choose/practice Performance Project piece
Music Notation Exercises #4
song(s) #7 / Performance Project and Minuet practice



notes on the neck
power chords / riffs
song(s) #8: alternative rock
triplets / swing feel
song(s) #9:
minor pentatonic & blues scale improvisation
final review


Week 11 handouts / video lecture


song(s) #8
song(s) #9
study for final –Guitar 1 Final Review
prepare Performance Project and Minuet



final exam
Performance Project


Attendance Policy

Regular attendance and participation in classes are essential for success in and are completion requirements for courses at CCV. A student's failure to meet attendance requirements as specified in course descriptions will normally result in a non-satisfactory grade.

  • In general, missing more than 20% of a course due to absences, lateness or early departures may jeopardize a student's ability to earn a satisfactory final grade.
  • Attending an on-ground or synchronous course means a student appeared in the live classroom for at least a meaningful portion of a given class meeting. Attending an online course means a student posted a discussion forum response, completed a quiz or attempted some other academically required activity. Simply viewing a course item or module does not count as attendance.
  • Meeting the minimum attendance requirement for a course does not mean a student has satisfied the academic requirements for participation, which require students to go above and beyond simply attending a portion of the class. Faculty members will individually determine what constitutes participation in each course they teach and explain in their course descriptions how participation factors into a student's final grade.

Accessibility Services for Students with Disabilities:

CCV strives to mitigate barriers to course access for students with documented disabilities. To request accommodations, please
  1. Provide disability documentation to the Accessibility Coordinator at your academic center. https://ccv.edu/discover-resources/students-with-disabilities/
  2. Request an appointment to meet with accessibility coordinator to discuss your request and create an accommodation plan.
  3. Once created, students will share the accommodation plan with faculty. Please note, faculty cannot make disability accommodations outside of this process.

Academic Integrity

CCV has a commitment to honesty and excellence in academic work and expects the same from all students. Academic dishonesty, or cheating, can occur whenever you present -as your own work- something that you did not do. You can also be guilty of cheating if you help someone else cheat. Being unaware of what constitutes academic dishonesty (such as knowing what plagiarism is) does not absolve a student of the responsibility to be honest in his/her academic work. Academic dishonesty is taken very seriously and may lead to dismissal from the College.