A measure, in music, is a measurement of time that contains a specific number of pulses defined by a time signature. Depending on the time value, a pulse, or a group of pulses, make-up a beat. A measure contains a natural division of strong beats and weak beats.

Depending on the time signature, certain beats within a measure are naturally accented. A measure is divided into strong beats and weak beats. The first beat of every measure is the strongest.

The following accentuation of beats apply to both simple time and compound time. In duple and triple time, only the first beat in each measure is accented. In quadruple time, the first beat is the strongest, the third beat is medium strong, and the second and fourth beats are weak.

It is important to show the beats as clearly as possible by grouping its divisions with beams. Only notes with flags are beamed. Beaming does not apply to vocal music in the same way. The beams in vocal music are broken into notes with flags notes at the beginning of each new syllable. In vocal music, clear divisions of the beat are not essential.