Feb 18, 2019  
2016-2018 Catalog 
2016-2018 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Music, B.A.

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Arts Building, Third Floor

(760) 750-4137

Program Director:
William Bradbury, D.M.A.

William Bradbury, D.M.A.
Ching-Ming Cheng, Ph.D.
Merryl Goldberg, Ed.D.
Mtafiti Imara, Ph.D.

Program of Study

The Music major presents all aspects of music as integral parts of a complete music education; students in the major are expected to learn the language of music through the study of theory, history, performance, composition, and technology. While doing so, they will investigate various musical cultures, create their own original music or interpretations of others’ music, communicate with an audience to present their completed work, and archive their work. Music is placed in a societal context and students will participate in their local music community.

Student Learning Outcomes

Students who graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in Music will be able to:

  1. Articulate and demonstrate proficiency in the language of music, including scales, chords, harmony, rhythm, analysis, counterpoint, form, instrumentation, reading skills, ear-training, and music technology.
  2. Apply knowledge of musical culture in a global context including Western concert music, American popular music, and music from other global traditions.
  3. Create work in performance, music technology, improvisation and/or, composition and present work in a public forum either through recitals, installations, or presentations of technology or composition work.
  4. Demonstrate proficiency with primary instrument or voice, in solo performance, and in small or large ensembles.

In addition, students will:

- Document work in the form of recordings, papers or videos.
- Provide community service through internships or concerts in the community.
- Learn skills for a career in music or admission to graduate school.

The curriculum is designed with maximum flexibility and allows the student to create his/her own course of study under advisement from one of the music faculty. Music majors might emphasize one of several areas, including performance, music technology, composition, and world music, or a combination of two or more of these areas. After completing a core of lower-division courses, the student becomes more focused in upper-division coursework. All students present a capstone project in their last semester of the senior year.

Educational and Career Opportunities

The Music major is designed so that graduates will be adequately prepared to pursue careers in music or to enter graduate school. Students graduating with a B.A. in Music have numerous employment opportunities upon graduation. These include private music teaching, sound or recording technology, performance, composition, teaching in primary and secondary school, or work in the music industry.

Admission to the Major

Students entering the program at the freshman level should have the skills expected of musicians who have studied music privately or in secondary school. Understanding of the fundamentals of music and music notation is expected. Students without these music skills can complete coursework at area community colleges.

The Music major is designed to integrate well with local community colleges’ curriculum. Students entering the program at the junior level must have completed the lower-division core (either in community college or at CSUSM) before pursuing upper-division coursework. The core can easily be completed at any of the community colleges in the area; see the Music Program Director for more information.

Special Conditions for the Bachelor of Arts in Music

All courses counted toward the major, including Preparation for the Major courses, must be completed with a grade of C (2.0) or better.

General Education (51 Units)

General Education Requirements  

Preparation for the Major (32 Units)


*Three (3) lower-division units in Area C1 (Arts) of General Education  are automatically satisfied by courses taken in Preparation for the Major.

Major Requirements (26 Units)


The student in the Music major works with a faculty advisor to design a plan of coursework that addresses his/her individual needs. Courses are selected from the broad categories listed below. In some cases, independent study work may be substituted for courses not offered (under advisement).

Ensemble Courses (2 Units)

Select two from ensembles

Studio Courses (6-9 Units)

Three or four semesters for a total of (6-9 Units) from advanced theory, composition, technology, instrumental instruction, ensembles. (Students emphasizing performance will need four semesters of MUSC 340 , and an additional two semesters of MUSC 389 -MUSC 396 .) MUSC 301 -MUSC 313 , MUSC 340 , MUSC 389 -MUSC 396 , MUSC 402 

Survey of World Music Course

Survey Courses

Select one from

Upper-Division Electives in Music (6-9 Units)

Capstone Project

Minimum Total (120 Units)

Students must take a sufficient number of elective units to bring the total number of units to a minimum of 120

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