Music Degree Programs for Majors

Music Major Degree Programs

Three undergraduate major degree programs in music are available in the Glenn Korff School of Music---the BM, BA, and BME degrees. All three of these require a minimum of 120-credit hours (averaging 15 credits a semesters over eight semesters). Each degree program includes the same number of hours of general education course requirements (UNL's campus-wide ACE program) as well as a common core of shared classes in the discipline of music---lessons, ensembles, theory and musicianship skills, and history--- which must be taken in sequence over the course of the freshman, sophomore, and junior years. These degrees are accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM). Degree-requirement checksheets and sample semester-by-semester plans for the various emphases in the BM in Music are provided in the Appendix at the end of this Handbook. Students can also find the detailed requirements for their degree in the on-line UNL Undergraduate Bulletin (http://bulletin.unl.edu/undergraduate), and in their own individualized Degree Audit in MyRed (https://myred.nebraska.edu).

The Bachelor of Music

The BM degree, designed to prepare students for graduate study and a professional career, is offered in performance, and also in music composition, music theory, and music history. Its music courses and requirements unfold in order over four years, and include many additional credits of music coursework beyond the shared core common to all three degree programs.

Students on all options in the BM degree must take the capstone class, MUSC 445 (Analysis for Performance), to fulfill the university's ACE 10 requirement. In addition, students pursuing the option in performance or composition must do a Senior Recital (MUSR 490), while students pursuing the option in music history or theory must do an undergraduate thesis in the form of a research paper.

The undergraduate thesis for the BM degree in Music History or Theory may be on any historical, theoretical or analytical topic of the student’s choice, upon approval by the faculty adviser, who must be a member of the music history or theory faculty corresponding to the degree pursued. The project is initiated by enrolling for Research Proposal Development (MUSC 384), for one (1) credit, with the project's faculty adviser as the instructor of record. The project is completed during a subsequent semester in which the student is enrolled in Undergraduate Thesis (MUSC 499, for two (2) credits, with the adviser again as the instructor of record. (Honors Program students may enroll in 499H, and they may enroll for three (3) rather than two (2) credits, if they so desire.) It is normally expected that MUSC 384 and MUSC 499 will be taken consecutively in fall and spring semesters of the same academic year. Completion of the project will require regular consultation with the adviser throughout the course of the project. From the beginning of MUSC 384 to the end of MUSC 499, the student will work to complete the project in stages according to a timeline established in consultation with the adviser.

The Bachelor of Arts with a Major in Music

The BA degree in music can normally be completed in four years. Its course requirements in music essentially just consist of the shared three-year core for all music degrees. The degree has considerably more elective space than the BM, and it also requires a minor or a second major. This degree can be used to prepare students either for graduate study and a professional career in music, or for a wide variety of other kinds of educational and vocational paths.

The BA degree in music offers options based on performance area, and also a declared emphasis performance or research. The BA with performance emphasis culminates with a recital and the BA with research emphasis culminates in the presentation of a final written research project. At the end of the fourth semester BA students, in consultation with their academic advisor and the student's applied area teacher, select either the performance or research emphasis.

If the performance empasis is chosen, the student begins preparation for a half-recital (20-30 minutes) normally given during the sixth (i.e., the last required) semester of applied music study.

If the research emphasis is selected, the student then must find a research project advisor from among the music faculty. This faculty advisor is chosen by the student in consultation with their applied instructor and the Head of the Academic Studies (Theory/History/Composition) Area. The project may be on any research topic of the student’s choice, upon approval by the faculty advisor. The project is initiated by enrolling for Research Proposal Development (MUSC 384) for one (1) credit, with the project’s faculty advisor as the instructor of record. It is completed during a subsequent semester in which the student is enrolled in Special Topics in Music (MUSC 398) for one (1) or two (2) credits, with the same adviser again as the instructor of record. It is normally expected that the two-semester sequence of MUSC 384 and MUSC 398 will be taken consecutively in the fall and spring semesters of the same academic year. Completion of the project requires regular consultation with the adviser throughout the two semesters of the project. During this period the student works to complete the project in stages according to a timeline established in consultation with the advisor.

The university's ACE 10 requirement can be fulfilled within the BA in music following the research emphasis by taking MUSC 398 for 2 credits, so that MUSC 384+MUSC 398 together become a two-semester, 3-credit experience.

Students on the BA in music following the performance emphasis do not have an ACE 10 experience embedded in their music requirements. They can fulfill this rquirement by electing to take MUSC 445, or by finding an ACE 10 course in the area of study of their minor or second major.

The Bachelor of Music Education

The BME degree is a professional degree, which, upon successful completion, certifies the student to teach vocal and instrumental music, K-12. It shares the common three-year core of music classes with the BM and BA degrees. Under the right circumstances it is possible to complete this 120-credit degree (including the semester of student teaching) in four years, but since the BME degree is in many respects the equivalent of a double major in music and in education, students will often elect to spend five years to complete it.

All BME students take MUED 403 (Student Teaching Seminar) as their capstone class and to fulfill the university's ACE 10 requirement.