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Applied Gui­tar – Improvisation/​Figured Bass I/II

  • Course type: Elective course.
  • Course level: Bachelor/Master.
  • Year of study: Two semesters, fall and spring.
  • Final assessment: Assessment from course instructor / practical exam.
  • Prerequisites: The 20-variant is a prerequisite for the 21-variant.
  • Language of instruction: Norwegian or English.

Course description

The course includes an introduction to Figure bass playing and practical use of the instrument. The course can not be chosen by students with guitar as their principal instrument.

Responsible department: Piano, Accompaniment, Guitar and Accordion Department.

Course instructor: Geir-Otto Nilsson.

Learning objectives

Upon completion of the course, students are expected to

  • have basic skills in utilizing the guitar as a support instrument in various music education contexts.


  • Basic technical guitar skills.
  • Figure bass playing.
  • Playing by ear
  • Transposition.
  • Improvisation.
  • Ensemble playing and accompaniment.


The course is taught individually and/or in groups of 2–4 students. Content and work methods are adapted to the student's level. Tuition is given within the time frame of 22,5 minutes per student per week for 24 weeks.

Course requirements

At the end of the academic year, the students must present a curriculum/repertoire list of at least 20 minutes which includes all areas covered in the course.

Deadline: The curriculum/repertoire list must be approved by the course instructor by 1 May in the second semester of the course.

Final assessment

All course requirements must be approved prior to obtaining the final assessment.

Assessment is based on learning objectives. The final assessment is given as a pass/fail mark and is determined in one of two alternative ways:

Alternative 1 (normal)

Students choosing alternative 1 commit themselves to follow at least 80 % of the tuition in the course. Students will also perform at least one internal concert per semester. The final assessment is set by the course instructor based on each student's level of achievement throughout the course period.

Alternative 2

The final assessment is set on the basis of a practical examination with at least two internal examiners, where the student performs a self-chosen program of approx. 10 minutes. The student will also be tested in simple transposition by ear and prima vista play by chords.

Students who choose Alternative 2 are responsible for making their choice known by sending an email to the Exams Office at by 1 February in the second semester of the course.

New assessment

Students who do not pass the course must complete a practical exam as described above in Alternative 2.

Published: May 19, 2020 — Last updated: Mar 30, 2022