Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


A questionnaire was devised to determine the general status of modal counterpoint classes in selected colleges and universities in the United States and to discover the most-used modal counterpoint textbooks, specifically those exhibiting the direct approach; it was sent to 152 NASM approved schools, and 117 (76.97%) responses were obtained. Information was requested about the types of counterpoint classes offered, the respondents' ratings of the modal counterpoint texts they use, teaching aids and techniques, and ways in which modal counterpoint is included in the music curriculum. Ninety-one (77.8%) of the 117 responding institutions included modal counterpoint in their course offerings. The majority of these institutions offered one semester of modal counterpoint and required it in at least one curricular area. The three most-used modal counterpoint texts which exhibit the direct approach, and the percentage of respondents using them, were: (1) (25.3%)--Soderlund, Gustave Fredric. Direct Approach to Counterpoint in 16th Century Style. With a Foreword by Howard Hanson. Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1947. (2) (13.2%)--Benjamin, Thomas. The Craft of Modal Counterpoint. New York: Schirmer Books, 1979. (3) (9.9%)--Gauldin, Robert. A Practical Approach to 16th-Century Counterpoint. Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1985. The three texts listed above were surveyed for the inclusion of discussions on 138 topics directly related to writing music in sixteenth-century style. The topics were grouped and sub-grouped under these headings: (1) general discussion of the texts; (2) melodic concepts; (3) two-voice concepts; (4) three-voice concepts; and (5) treatment of writing in four or more voices, triple meter, and text setting. The survey was organized to provide a report on the way in which each of the three texts covered each of the 138 topics.