Jan 18, 2021
General Requirements for the Bachelor of Music Degree
Lisa Hearne (chair), Martin Hearne, James Martin, Jama Stilwell
Cornell offers two majors leading to the degree of Bachelor of Music: a major in Performance and a major in Music Education. The first is designed to emphasize the study of music performance within the framework of the liberal arts and is the first step in the extensive professional preparation in performance that leads to a concert career or to teaching applied music in a college, university, conservatory, or private studio. The second generally leads to the profession of pre-collegiate school music teaching. For students interested in fields such as music therapy, music ministry, or community music, a major in Music Education is strongly recommended by some graduate schools and required by others. Students interested in pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Music will find these requirements listed under “Music,” in the Courses of Study.
Note: Students are not allowed to earn both a Bachelor of Music and a Bachelor of Arts with a Music major. Students are also not allowed to earn a Bachelor of Music and a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. Students interested in pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Music will find these requirments listed under ‘Music’, in Programs of Instruction.
1. A Minimum of 31 Course Credits
No more than two 100-level courses may be taken in the senior year without the permission of the Academic Standing Committee. No more than four All-College Independent Study course credits may be counted toward satisfying the minimum credit requirement for this degree. No more than two full credit in 500-level adjunct courses may be counted toward satisfying the minimum 31 credits.
2. A Cumulative Grade Point Average of 2.0 or Higher
3. A Minimum of 10 Courses from Outside the Music Department:
To include a First Year Seminar (FYS), a writing-designated course (W) and three humanities courses (not counting the W course) from at least two of the following groupings: (1) English and Foreign Language; (2) History; (3) Philosophy; (4) Religion; (5) Art or Theatre; and (6) Education.
6. One Elective Course Credit in Music History or Theory
8. A Grade of “Pass” on All Parts of the Piano Proficiency Requirement:
All Music majors, regardless of degree or program, must pass the Piano Proficiency Requirement by the end of the sophomore year. If this requirement is not passed by this time, the student must take applied piano (MUS 761 or MUS 762) until the requirement has been passed. The requirement consists of six components: performance of three prepared works; scales; arpeggios; sight reading; and melody harmonization. Also, as part of the requirement, Music Education majors must demonstrate their ability to perform an accompaniment with a singer or instrumentalist. A student may pass the requirement in segments. Music Education majors must pass the Piano Proficiency Requirement before applying for Student Teaching Placement.
9. A Grade of “Pass” on All Parts of the Aural Skills Proficiency Requirement
All BA and BM Music majors must pass the Aural Skills Proficiency Requirement in order to complete the Music Major. These students must pass each of a series of graduated exams (3 levels required for the BA; 4 levels required for the BM) that test in the following Aural Skills areas: intervals, chords, scales, melodic dictation, harmonic dictation, and sight singing. These topics will be taught both within the four required Music Theory courses, as well as in a longer-term self-paced, computer-program-assisted, proficiency-based mode. Music Education majors must pass the Aural Skills Proficiency Requirement before applying for Student Teaching Placement.
10. Music Ensemble
At least one music ensemble each semester for eight semesters, as arranged by the student, the faculty advisor, and the ensemble conductor (see Ensemble Participation).
11. Completion of Senior Capstone Experience
- Student teaching fulfills this requirement for Music Education students
Specific Requirements for the Major in Music Education
a. Three Course Credits in a Primary Performance Medium
Either voice or a keyboard, string, percussion, or wind instrument.
b. One-and-One-Half Course Credits in Secondary Performance Media
The remaining 1/4 credit may be fulfilled by repeating one of these courses, or (with the approval of the department) by taking MUS 761 .
c. The Following Courses, According to Emphasis within the Major:
Instrumental Music Education:
At least one semester of
d. MUS 306, MUS 331, & MUS 431
e. In addition to the foregoing requirements, prospective teachers must also 1) apply to the Department of Music for candidacy by the second semester of their sophomore year, and 2) apply for admission to the Teacher Education Program (preferably at the start of their sophomore year) and complete coursework for elementary certification and /or secondary certification as described under Education. Prospective teachers should request a current list of the specific course requirements from the Education Office. In making its decision on admission to the program the Music Department will evaluate a) whether the student has made satisfactory progress toward the completion of Aural Skills & Piano Proficiency requirements and b) whether the student’s performance in the introductory courses within the major has been satisfactory.
f. Please note: Music Education Majors must pass the Piano Proficiency and Aural Skills Proficency Requirements before applying for Student Teaching placement.