FTCE 028 Study Guide
The FTCE Music K-12 (028) is a competency certification exam issued by the state of Florida. Potential educators must pass the exam and demonstrate the knowledge and skills required to teach kindergarten to twelfth-grade music theory, history, and techniques to students in Florida public schools. The computer-based exam contains seven competency areas covering approximately one hundred multiple-choice questions with two hours and 30 minutes of test time allotted. The FTCE Music K-12 study guide will help testing candidates apply their knowledge and skills to topics related to music's evolving structure and form throughout history, effective instructional music programs and lesson planning, assessing student progress, establishing student and professional resource networks, and vocal, instrumental, and general music instruction. Below is a table showing the individual competency percentages and the number of questions in each competency.
|FTCE Music K-12 Study Guide (028)|
|Music Theory, History, and Literature||20% (~20 questions)|
|Curricula and Instructional Planning||25% (~25 questions)|
|Instructional and Assessment Procedures||25% (~25 questions)|
|Professional and Instructional Resources||15% (~15 questions)|
|Instructional Emphasis: Choral||5% (~5 questions)|
|Instructional Emphasis: Instrumental||5% (~5 questions)|
|Instructional Emphasis: General Music||5% (~5 questions)|
Music Theory, History, and Literature
Music instructors understand the value of teaching music composition, the history of music, and the development of musical theory through historical traditions and cultural themes. The following objectives provide information on the knowledge and skills required to complete this competency area:
- Differentiate between the three core music components and their structures
- Recognize the basic forms of music
- Distinguish between various music notation symbols and terms
From its early inception through modern times, Western musical approaches and compositions have seen far-reaching changes. Candidates are expected to demonstrate knowledge of the movement of musical styles throughout history, and the composers who have contributed to major music genres that represent the different eras of traditional Western music. Additionally, applicants may be asked to relate composers to their specific music styles. Applicants will need to distinguish between the various genres and styles of American music as well as those from other countries and cultures.
Curricula and Instructional Planning
Music teachers are expected to understand and apply appropriate techniques to nurture students' individual musical expressions and apply them to their teaching strategies. Educators should create an appropriate student-centered curriculum that meets teaching standards, which includes being able to:
- Determine and adjust musical compositions to meet students' artistic development and abilities
- Explore relevant study programs for musically gifted students
- Discover study techniques for teaching music theory and history
- Establish innovative instruction methods to foster students' creativity and musical growth
Music instructors should understand the importance of creating a learning space that promotes and encompasses the full spectrum of music instruction. They should know how to effectively incorporate historical and conceptual music features along with musical performance. Applicants should also recognize how to integrate music into multiple subject areas so students can expand their musical knowledge. Additionally, music instructors should follow developments in the literature on music instruction and apply or adapt recent changes into the curriculum, so all students have the best possible learning experience.
Instructional and Assessment Procedures
Teachers should deploy teaching methods promote student independent and creative development in music studies. Candidates should also demonstrate methods in positively assessing students' music skills, and demonstrate abilities to:
- Understand and apply suitable systems for conducting performances
- Make evaluative determinations regarding the artistic elements of musical presentations
- Recognize methods for assessing students' growth
Music teachers will need to recognize and demonstrate knowledge of corrective measures involving sound issues with individual or group performances. Additionally, they should know that proper balance, blend, and intonation, among other factors, are what directly affect music performance. Applicants will also need to differentiate between the various qualities of vocal and instrumental music performance.
They will need to recognize how musical concepts, including tone, pitch, and blend, relate to the aesthetic sounds created by musical arrangements. Instructors should know how to assess the quality of their instruction, as well as determine whether their curriculum and program strategies meet the needs of student interest and progress. In doing so, applicants should explore other opportunities in music instruction, including introducing technology into the curriculum.
Professional and Instructional Resources
Music teachers know the most effective professional, educational, and technological resources to use in music education. This FTCE Music K-12 study guide lists the main skills that are tested in this competency section, which include being able to:
- Identify music instrument type depending on teaching and sound-producing needs
- Know the most effective computer systems and applications for teaching and learning music
- Establish methods for promoting support for music programs and productions
Music teachers should be aware of the rules and regulations governing music use and production. They should know that music is proprietary and protected under copyright laws. Using artists' lyrics or musical compositions without permission may result in legal action, such as lawsuits, and discreditation within the music community or industry. Applicants will need to recognize relevant industry-related sources available within the music sector and identify methods to incorporate them into music studies. Candidates should also explore appropriate channels to place musically inclined students in music studies that relate to their abilities or interests.
Instructional Emphasis: Choral
Music classes typically incorporate choral music assemblies as part of the program curriculum. Educators should also demonstrate knowledge of how to effectively engage students in diverse singing environments, including to:
- Distinguish between different language pronunciations in vocalizing
- Initiate corrective methods to voice patterns, including pitch and range
- Demonstrate knowledge of proper techniques for maintaining vocal health
Applicants should also distinguish changing voice patterns and vocal abilities based on student age and voice development. They should know how a voice's sound, tone, and volume may change over time and may result in a shift of the vocal ranges. Candidates will also be asked to demonstrate knowledge of accessing choral teaching and performance resources from organizations such as the American Choral Directors Association and the Florida Vocal Association. In accessing these resources, educators should select developmentally appropriate material from the selection of classroom aids, articles, and other offerings available. Applicants will also be asked to determine if issues exist within an ensemble grouping and to examine methods to rectify voice or sound issues towards the improvement of the production.
Instructional Emphasis: Instrumental
The music teacher focuses on musical instrument performance that illustrates students' basic skills in using several types of musical devices. Educators should also demonstrate knowledge of how to effectively instruct students in instrumental techniques, including to:
- Demonstrate ability to properly identify playing techniques for various instruments
- Distinguish between instrument groups and identify their performing ranges, sounds, and clefs
- Diagnose individual instrument sound production issues and determine corrective actions
Applicants should know what instrumental sounds and performer techniques need improving or correction when listening to and observing group instrumental productions. They should be able to identify such actions as proper hand, and finger movements, correct breathing techniques, and proper control of the instrument. Educators will also be expected to recognize numerous organizations and their instructional and performance resources, such as the Florida Bandmaster's Association, which supports the efforts of Florida band programs. In identifying the various available programs, applicants should know what materials are accessible for students of various ages, studying different instruments. Additionally, educators should know to properly care for and maintain all instrument types.
Instructional Emphasis: General Music
Although music instruction can include choir presentations, band competitions, or ensemble productions, it can also include fewer intensive forms of music instruction that are provided directly in music classroom settings. Educators should know the proper forms of musical instruments to use and what types of music to teach, depending on student age groups. They should also know that the musical tastes and interests of students evolve as they progress to higher grades. Educators should identify resources to meet those continuing changes in music interest, such as age-appropriate music and more advanced instruments that reflect a more mature growth in music. While teaching basic vocal and instrument instruction, applicants should know how to encourage and implement expressive movement and dance with musical routines. Educators should also understand how to properly care for and maintain all instrument types.
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Bryan McMahon, M.A. is a high school biology and special education teacher in New Jersey with over 14 years of teaching experience. He has hundreds of hours of experience tutoring aspiring teachers to take the CSET/CBEST exam suite. He has successfully passed the science and special education Praxis exams. Bryan completed a B.S. in Education from Seton Hall University and an M.A. in Teaching from Mangrove College.
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