Minimum Configuration

In order to use Musical Dictation, your computer must be equipped with a minimum of one of the following operating systems and configurations:

  • Windows 2000 or later
  • Mac OS X or later
  • Adobe Reader
  • Optimized for a screen with 1024 x 768 pixels

Help Menu

The “Help” section is always accessible from the main menu bar, which is found at the top of the window.  It will provide information on using the Musical Dictation website.  The help section is organized according to the structure of the main menu bar.


Once in the “Help” section, use the scroll bar on the right-hand side of the screen or the scroll wheel of your mouse to move through the text.

Welcome Menu

The “Welcome” menu is accessible from the main menu bar found at the top of the window and it has two sub-sections:


  • The “Introduction” sub-section briefly describes the Musical Dictation website.  It explains whom it is intended for and indicates the prerequisite concepts to master in order to use it.
  • The “Pedagogical Objectives” sub-section presents the objectives of Musical Dictation and the main musical elements that are covered.

Information Menu

The “Information” menu is accessible from the main menu bar found at the top of the window and consists of three sub-sections:


  • The “Rights of Use” sub-section describes the rules for using the contents of the Musical Dictation website.
  • The “Credits” sub-section lists the names of all contributors to the website’s development.
  • The “Comments” sub-section allows you to leave comments for the individuals in charge of the website and to view comments left by other users.

Learning Resources Menu

The “Learning Resources” menu is accessible from the main menu bar and consists of three sub-sections:

  • The “Notating a Dictation” sub-section shows the method prescribed by the authors for taking musical dictations. These ideas are classified in four sections on the left-hand side of the screen.  To get to a specific section, click on the section title or scroll down to find it.


  • The “Answer Keys” sub-section describes the types of dictations and their classifications. The information on dictation nomenclature and chapter organization found here will be useful when downloading dictations (see the “Downloading” section).


  • The “Glossary” sub-section lists each of the terms used in the website that pertain to listening to and writing a musical dictation.


The instructions for each type of dictation are found in the three sub-sections of the “Learning Resources” menu:

  • Melodic Dictation
  • Rhythmic Dictation
  • Harmonic Dictation

Downloading Menu

The “Downloading” menu allows you to download the musical dictations and the answer keys.


It is possible to sort and download dictations and answer keys by level of difficulty:

  • Level 1
  • Level 2
  • Level 3
  • Level 4

OR by category:

  • melodic
  • major
  • minor
  • rhythmic
  • harmonic

To do this, you must use the drop-down menu found in the upper left corner of the screen to select the way you want to have the dictations sorted.

Sort by Level

In the preceding image, the list is sorted by level of difficulty. Sorted this way, the column on the left lists the levels, and the one on the right lists the categories.  If sorting is made by category, the column on the left lists the categories and the one on the right lists the levels.

To download dictations and answer keys, a level of difficulty must be selected from the four options. 


It is also necessary to select one or more categories.  


By clicking on “Select All,”Select all all categories will be check-marked.

After selecting a level and one or more categories, the corresponding dictations and answer keys will appear in the lower part of the window.  Note that certain pairings of levels and categories will not yield any dictations.  For example: Level 1 and Melodic Dictations (MEL)


It is also possible to organize the appearance of this list by clicking on the word at the top of each column.


For example, by clicking on the word “Category,” a small arrow pointing up will show the dictation list in ascending numeric order, from the top of the list down. By clicking again on “Category,” the arrow will point down and the appearance of the list will be reversed.

To download the dictations and answer keys, simply checkmark the desired selections and click on “Download.” Download This will open a download window that will prompt you to save the file(s) to your computer.  Notice that the number of files to be downloaded and their size appears at the bottom of the “Downloading” screen to the right of the word “Total.” Total

Once the files are saved, you can view or listen to them on your computer.  The sound files for each dictation are saved in MP3 format.  You can listen to the MP3 files through music listening software or they can be transferred to a digital music player.

The answer keys are saved in PDF format.  You need to have Adobe Acrobat Reader in order to view and print them.

Note that it is possible to download all the files.  After selecting all files, click on “Dictation and Answer Key” or “Answer Key Only” found at the top of the column.


To print the list of selected dictations and answer keys, click on “Print the list.” Print list This will open a window allowing you to choose your printing parameters.