Majoring & Minoring

Bachelor of Music in Composition

This degree is intended for students who wish to pursue composition as a career, with the aim of preparing them for the professional arena or

further study at the graduate level.

After grounding in traditional tonal harmony, specific topic areas such as species counterpoint, Baroque counterpoint, Classical sonata form, and nineteenth- and twentieth-century techniques are addressed in the core theory sequence. Ear-training is an integral part of the program. Student composers work in individual or small group lessons with faculty and guest composers and have many opportunities to hear their works performed.

Major in Music Composition: 82 credits in the major area
  • Six semesters of MUL80-100 Recital Attendance (four semesters for transfer students)
  • MUL80-114 Music Literature I
  • MUL80-214 Music Literature II
  • MUL80-314 Music Literature III
  • MUL80-414 Music Literature IV
  • MUT76-111 Solfege/Ear Training I
  • MUT76-113 Music Theory I: Harmony in Practice
  • MUT76-211 Solfege/Ear Training II
  • MUT76-213 Music Theory II: Form and Analysis
  • MUT76-223 Music Technology
  • MUT76-311 Solfege/Ear Training III
  • MUT76-313 Music Theory III: Counterpoint
  • MUT76-343 Orchestration
  • MUT76-413 Music Theory IV: 20th-Century Music
  • 14 credits of MUT76-532/534  Composition
  • MUE77-603 Choral Conducting or MUE77-613 Instrumental Conducting
  • Eight semesters of ensemble, selected among the following:
    • ENS78-101/201 Southwestern University Wind Ensemble
    • ENS78-111/211 Southwestern University Jazz Band
    • ENS78-121/221 Southwestern University Singers
    • ENS78-131/231 Southwestern University Chorale
    • ENS78-141/241 Opera Theatre
    • ENS78-171/271 Southwestern University Orchestra
  • 16 credits of APM8x-00x/8x-20x (principal instrument)
  • Four credits from Applied Music 8x-00x/8x-20x (secondary instrument*)

*Fulfilled by Piano for all students except those whose principal instrument is Piano.

NOTE: Music Theory/Composition majors must enroll in applied piano lessons every semester until the Keyboard Proficiency Exam is passed.

Additional Requirements for the Major in Music Theory/Composition (BM): Successful completion of the Keyboard Proficiency Examination; successful completion of the Sophomore Barrier Examination; successful completion of a jury at the end of each semester of enrollment at Southwestern; and successful completion of a capstone experience.