Grading Scale and Criteria

Students will be awarded grades based upon the following:

40% Daily Voice Building & Rehearsal Techniques

Students will be measured on the following:

Courtesy and Respect
  • maintains a quiet atmosphere when not actively singing
  • listens to directors and ensemble members
  • demonstrates compassion for ensemble members
  • present for and arrives on time to class
  • seated in assigned seat by the time the bell rings
  • brings music/materials and pencil to seat
  • prepares for rehearsal by practicing outside of class
  • ready to sing and follows directions
Voice Building
  • sings "on the breath"
  • sings at appropriate volume
  • uses hand motions and movement to reinforce musical concepts
  • unifies vowel and consonant sounds with ensemble
  • other concepts as instructed
Rehearsal Techniques
  • sings using solfege syllables for scale degrees
  • actively listens to section members and ensemble
  • writes rehearsal notes in music using pencil
  • contributes to class discussions and answers questions
  • writes counting, solfege, etc. into music
  • tries new musical concepts
  • practices good vocal health and alignment
  • responds to conductor cues
  • other concepts as instructed
30% Performance Assessments & Written Assignments

Students are required to take singing tests, which measure musical understanding and preparation of upcoming concert repertoire. Written work will focus on music literacy, critical-thinking, problem-solving, creativity and articulating musical ideas. Any work missed due to tardy or absence must be made up immediately upon return.

In written work, writing skills should be demonstrated along with musical understanding. Proper spelling, grammar, and formatting are important in clearly communicating a student’s understanding of musical concepts.

20% Concert Performance & Dress Rehearsals

Readiness. Students are expected to arrive on-time, usually 30 minutes prior to concert time, wearing appropriate performance attire and prepared to sing. Rest, nutrition, hydration, and vocal relaxation are all important elements of preparing for a performance.

Etiquette. Respectful and mature behavior is expected of all ensemble members, especially during concerts. Grading for concert attendance will reflect how each student represents themselves, their ensemble, and their school as both performer and audience member.

Listening. Listening is as much a part of musical learning as performing. Students are required to remain in attendance at required concerts for the entire performance. Students will not receive full credit for concert attendance if they leave prior to the end of the last ensemble’s performance.

Evaluation. Concert evaluations will be completed by students following each performance. Evaluations will be turned in and evaluated for evidence of careful listening, critical-thinking, and musical understanding. As always, good writing is important and will be evaluated along with music-related content.

Attendance. Concerts are an extension and culmination of the learning we do in class. Students are required to attend all concerts that are listed for their choir in the Vocal Music Student Handbook. Students with excessive tardies and absences may not be permitted to perform (per director's discretion) but will be required to attend as an audience member.

Absence from a concert will only be excused by a director if a parent/guardian contacts the director by email or phone no less than two days in advance. Paper notes will not be accepted. Dialogue between directors and parents/guardians is important in determining the reason for the absence and opportunities for students to make up that portion of their grade.

Transportation issues and job conflicts are not excuses for missing concerts. If transportation issues arise, students are encouraged to work with their peers to find a ride. If a ride cannot be arranged, a parent/guardian must contact a director by email or phone.

Directors are not allowed to provide rides or facilitate non-school-bus transportation for students. This includes car-pooling or any other ride-sharing, whether driven by parents or students. 

An alternate assignment will be provided to students with an excused absence.  The completed assignment must be turned in by the due date. Unexcused absences cannot be made up.

10% Trimester (CSA) Exams

District assessments are administered each trimester. Each student is assessed on sight-singing, music theory, composition, analyzing performances, and large-group performance.

  Grading criteria is as follows:

A -

B +
B -

C +
C -

D +
D -


93 - 100%
90 - 92.9%

87 - 89.9%
83 - 86.9%
80 - 82.9%

77 - 79.9%
73 - 76.9%
70 - 72.9%

67 - 69.9%
63 - 66.9%
60 - 62.9%

0 - 59.9%