Major Tracks

While all music majors are required to take global soundscapes, critical listening, two consecutive semesters of the music theory sequence, an advanced seminar, four electives and four semesters of a departmental ensemble, the remainder of their coursework and their senior "capstone" will depend on their chosen track:

Composition & Theory

Admission is contingent upon submission of three musical compositions to the Composition track advisor. Required courses for this track are MUS 103a,b, MUS 104a,b and MUS 106a. Students in this track are eligible to take a semester of MUS 292a,b. The capstone for this track consists of a composition project approved by the track advisor, completed in the context of a course such as MUS 106a, or MUS 292a, b. Please consult with the composition track advisor early about your capstone (i.e., by at least the Spring of your Junior year).

History & Culture

Students may choose Senior Project (99d) as their capstone course, which usually will consist of a thesis. Other possibilities include taking a graduate musicology proseminar or seminar course for credit (MUS courses at the 180-level or above), which involves writing a 25-page research paper. Please consult with the history and culture track advisor early about your capstone (i.e., by at least the Spring of your Junior year).


Admission is contingent upon a successful audition, normally at the end of the sophomore year. All students in the performance track will take Senior Performance (MUS 118a,b) for their required capstone. This performance can take the form of a traditional recital, or be done as part of a larger ensemble: for instance, a jazz bassist might program and perform a concert with a band, doing the arrangements, and writing the program notes, or a conducting student could program and prepare an ensemble concert. Please consult with the track advisor upon acceptance into the program about your capstone in order to have adequate time to prepare for this final performance. Solo performers must take Junior Recital (MUS117a,b) as one of their electives in preparation for their Senior Performance. Other students in the Performance Track must take at least one performance-focused elective related to their Senior Performance in their Junior year.