CHARLES FRANCIS LEINBERGER, PH.D.|
Modulation Types for Musical Analysis
|Use this table to determine the most specific type of modulation possible, once you have determined if there is a common chord and whether it is diatonic or chromatic.|
|Is there a common chord?||Is the common chord Diatonic or Chromatic?||Possible Modulation Types|
From least specific (1) to most specific (9)
|Yes, there is a common chord.||The common chord is diatonic.||1) Diatonic Common Chord (DCC), also called "Diatonic Pivot Chord"|
The common chord is usually just before the new dominant. It has a diatonic function in both the old key and the new key.
|The common chord is chromatic.||2) Altered Common Chord (ACC), also called "Chromatic Pivot Chord"|
The common chord is usually just before the new dominant. It has a chromatic function in the old key or the new key or both.
|3) Enharmonic Modulation using Mm7 Chord (Enh Mm7), also called "Enharmonic Major-minor7"|
The minor 7th of a Mm7 chord is respelled enharmonically to become an augmented 6th. This chord functions as a German or Italian Sixth in one key (either the old or new key) and a IV7, V7, bVII7 or Secondary Dominant in the other key.
|The common chord can be diatonic or chromatic.||4) Deceptive Cadence (DC)|
The dominant in the old key goes to vi or bVI in a major key, or VI in a minor key, which becomes the new tonic.
|5) Enharmonic Modulation using °7 Chord (Enh °7), also called "Enharmonic °7"|
The °7 chord is respelled enharmonically so that it has a logical function, either diatonic or chromatic, in both the old and the new key.
|There might be a common chord, but it's not required.||6) Diminished7 - Major-minor7 (°7-Mm7)|
Lowering any chord member of a °7 chord by a semitone results in a Mm7 chord. Some enharmonic spelling may be necessary. This is usually the dominant in the new key. The °7 is often functional in both keys.
|7) Chromatic Mediant (CM), also Called "Third Relation"|
A functional chord in the old key moves by chromatic mediant to a functional chord in the new key. A common chord is not necessary, but one may be present.
|8) Common Tone Modulation (CTM), also called "Pivot Note"|
One note is sustained. It is a member of a chord that is functional in the old key and becomes a member of a chord that is functional in the new key. A chromatic mediant often exists between these two chords. A common chord is not necessary, but one may be present.
|No, there is no common chord, chromatic mediant or other logical means possible.||9) Direct Modulation (DM), also called "Linear Motion"|
There is no possible common chord. There is no chromatic mediant between the last functional chord in the old key and the first functional chord in the new key. There is no common tone.
Flats appear as lower-case letter "B"s. (There is no HTML code for a flat sign.)|
Thanks to Dr. Edward Murphy, The University of Arizona
Roman Numerals for Musical Analysis
Examples of Modulation Types for Musical Analysis (PDF)
Dr. Edward Murphy's "Sonata Form" Essay
Instrument Transpositions for Musical Analysis
This page was updated 12 April 2020.