Music Courses at New River Community College

MUS 08-35 Fundamentals of Music (Online Developmental Course)

Fundamentals of Music is a class designed not only for non-music majors and music majors, but also for the community at large. For those who would like to learn to read music and learn the basic musical language, this is the class to meet those needs.

Some students have spent their life playing by ear, but feel that something is inherently missing, and that is the ability to have all music at their fingertips. This class will help fill those musical gaps.

Many music business and music technology majors are attracted to those fields of study without any prior music knowledge. Fundamentals of Music will help prepare these prospective majors prior to their first year of Basic Theory. For them, Fundamentals of Music is a necessity.

This course cannot be used for any credit since it is a developmental level course. Credits are not transferable.

Course Materials

OnMusic Fundamentals
OnMusic Fundamentals CD-ROM packet of McGraw-Hill.

Getting Started

Once you have acquired the course materials from the Bookstore you can proceed.

Please go to the following website for Student Orientation Information:

The first thing that you should do once you have your material from the Bookstore is to open the CD-ROM case. Do know that once it has been opened, it cannot be returned.

Follow the instructions for setting up the CD-ROM found within the case of the OnMusic Fundamentals CD-ROM and on the “Important Information and Download Center” screen that will appear. Make sure that you follow ALL instructions and set up everything that you need to before starting this course. If you fail to do one or more set-ups, your access to the course material will be impeded.

If you have any questions in the process, or any difficulty whatsoever during the course set-up or later, contact Technical Support at or telephone them at (703) 880-1180. They will respond within 24 hours, if not sooner.

When setting up the course, be sure to use your email address of New River Community College to communicate. I will use no other, so make sure that you enter your New River Community College email address when you set-up the course.

The rest of the information will be through your CD-ROM, so I encourage you to get going and if there are any questions that arise, other than technical ones, feel free to contact me at 540-674-3600 x4351 or through “Email Teacher” button already in your course.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  • Q: Can MUS 08-35 Fundamentals of Music apply to my degree?

    A: The answer to this question is both yes and no. If you are a potential music major and have no prior music theory knowledge, this course would be useful to you. Many potential music majors in Music Business or Technology have no prior musical training and find themselves unable to handle the normal first semester course of Basic Theory I. When that happens, a Fundamentals of Music course is required. If that course has not been taken, generally the first year of Music Theory is lost and has to be postponed to the sophomore year.

    If you want to count this course as a humanities credit for a general degree, the credits would not be transferable.

  • Q: Would this course be useful if I just want to learn how to read music?

    A: Absolutely! There are some students who have played by ear all their life, yet have taken this course in order to finally be able to read and understand the basic fundamentals.

  • Q: Why take these courses at New River?

    A: New River Community College has been a leader in distance education and online courses. This particular online course is supported by an instructor who is passionate and knowledgeable about music and wants to instill that same passion and knowledge to her students through the interactive forum of online education.

  • Q: Who is this class designed for?

    A: This class is designed for the student who feels comfortable working online and who needs the convenience of taking a course outside of the normal lecture time due to work related, family or physical restraints.

  • Q: When is this course offered?

    A: This course is offered during the Summer Session.

  • Q: What course materials do I need?

    A: The student needs to acquire the CD-ROM packet OnMusic Fundamentals of McGraw-Hill from the Bookstore.

  • Q: Does this class use Blackboard?

    A: No. The entire course is online using the OnMusic Fundamentals CD-ROM Packet.

  • Q: Do I need to come on campus for any part of the course?

    A: Not at all. Once the course materials have been picked up the rest is done online.

  • Q: How is this course graded?

    A: This class is graded on a Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory scale. A grade of Satisfactory constitutes a 70% or higher. This class can be retaken until one achieves the Satisfactory level.

  • Q: How do I pronounce the instructor's name “Billaud”?

    A: Very easy! Say the letter “B” and then “yo”. Put them together and now you are speaking French!