Bachelor of Arts in Music

The Music Department at Emory offers three tracks for fulfilling a major in music: Composition, Performance, and Research. Students must select a track by the end of the sophomore year and fulfill all course requirements in the track in order to earn a major in music. In addition to the music major requirements, students may also complete the Arts Management Concentration.

Since significant portions of the music curriculum are based on mastery of sequential study, the department recommends early declaration of the major. This allows students maximum benefit from private lesson study since the department provides a half-subsidy for private lessons for declared music majors.

To declare a music major, click here: Declaring a Music Major/Advising.

To complete the track selection form, click here: Music Major Track Selection Form.

General requirements:

  • Students will complete 45 credit hours to fulfill requirements in each track.
  • AP Music Theory Exam -- A score of 4 will transfer to Emory as MUS 114. A score of 5 will transfer to Emory as MUS 121 and the student may move on to MUS 122 in the spring semester.
  • MUS 121 Theory and Analysis I is the foundation course for all music major tracks.
  • No course for the major may be taken S/U.
  • A total of 16 hours of MUS 300, 320, and 310 may be applied toward the 124 academic hours requirements for graduation, although all applied music and ensembles must be taken for credit.
  • Students may not apply MUS 300, 310, or 320 as electives in any of the tracks.
  • No more than three credit hours of Supervised Reading or Study Abroad courses may count toward fulfillment of the music major.
  • An internship may not count toward the music major.
  • Performance track students enrolled in MUS 320 must also be co-enrolled in a MUS 300 primary ensemble. The following ensembles will count toward this requirement: Collaborative Piano, Concert Choir, Guitar Ensemble, Emory Jazz Ensembles, Emory Symphony Orchestra, University Chorus, Emory Wind Ensemble.

History and Culture Courses (all Tracks)

(Students may not count the same course for two categories)

History and Culture Category A
courses designed to build broad-based knowledge of Western classical repertoires
MUS 280 Early Music Explorations
MUS 281 Baroque Music
MUS 282 Haydn, Mozart, & Beethoven
MUS 283 19th Century Music
MUS 284 Music & Contemporary Society
History and Culture Category B
courses designed to build knowledge of musics outside of the Western classical tradition
MUS 204 Music Cultures of the World
MUS 211 Tango Music & Dance
MUS 215 Jazz: Its Evolution & Essence
MUS 302 American Music
MUS 303 Black Music: Culture, Commerce, & the Racial Imagination
MUS 304 Music & Cultural Revolution since the 1960s
MUS 306 Music of the Harlem Renaissance
MUS 369 Jewish Modernities
MUS 371 East Asian Musical Cultures
MUS 372 Chinese Music & Culture
MUS 381 Music & Storytelling
History and Culture Category C
courses designed to teach essential research and writing skills in historical musicology or ethnomusicology
MUS 250 Writing About Music
MUS 306 Music of the Harlem Renaissance
MUS 356 Women, Music, & Culture
MUS 364 Romanticism in Music
MUS 365 Wagner & Wagnerism
MUS 369 Jewish Modernities
MUS 371 East Asian Musical Cultures
MUS 372 Chinese Music & Culture
MUS 381 Music & Storytelling
MUS 455 Music in Emory's Special Collection
MUS 461 Discipline of Ethnomusicology
MUS 462 The Sound of Society
MUS 463 Seminar in Ethnomusicology

Concert Attendance

Attendance at concerts is an important part of the student's musical education. When possible, students should be present at concerts sponsored by the Department of Music. Several music courses require students to attend concerts at Emory or in the Atlanta area. Visit the Arts at Emory web site for a list of artists performing at Emory during the current academic year.

Department of Music Learning Goals

  1. Analytical skills: Students will demonstrate aural and written skills required to analyze basic harmonic, melodic, and textural examples of tonal music. Students will acquire the necessary theoretical and methodological tools to engage with music from a diverse spectrum of cultures, styles, and historical periods.
  2. Critical thinking skills: Students will demonstrate skills in writing and critical thinking by considering issues surrounding a wide variety of music and their larger connection with history, culture, and contemporary society. Intellectual curiosity will be encouraged by employing methodologies and strategies of cultural inquiry through assignments requiring analysis, synthesis, evaluation, and argument.
  3. Creative and performance skills: Students will acquire the facility to engage creatively with music through composition, improvisation, and performance. Students will develop their skills in various forms of music-making, including concert performance, production and composition, collaboration, and digital music applications.
  4. Knowledge of content and context: Students will demonstrate knowledge of the historical and theoretical framework for ways in which music and sound intersect with aesthetic trends, geography, technology, race, gender, sexuality, and economics. Students will acquire broad knowledge of western music and representative composers, and examine the range of contemporary and historical music performance practices found in a diverse global community.