How to prepare


  • Check out the audition requirements for your major instrument.
  • Develop the habit of practicing at least an hour every day.
  • Sightread every day.
  • Work diligently on your instrument-specific technique.
  • Take every opportunity to perform, both as a soloist and in ensembles.
  • Consider performing a senior recital.
  • Attend local concerts of symphonies, jazz combos, ballets, and choirs.
  • Listen to music from a variety of genres.


  • All students are strongly encouraged to study piano privately before enrolling in the Fall. Knowledge of basic piano skills including sight reading, playing scales, study of key signatures, and reading clefs, will provide the foundation necessary for students majoring in music.
  • Students with limited piano background will be enrolled in Keyboard I and II to develop fundamental skills.
  • Students with a comprehensive background in piano may choose to test out of Keyboard I and/or enroll in private lessons until they successfully pass the Piano Proficiency Exam (PPE).
  • In order to be admitted to the junior year, all music majors must pass the PPE. This exam includes scales, sight reading, harmonization, score reading, and performance of a prepared piece.


  • Students are strongly encouraged to study Music Theory before enrolling in the Fall. Taking a Music Theory course in high school is suggested. However, if the student must study independently, we recommend using the following text: Harder, Paul. Basic Materials in Music Theory: A Programmed Course. (ISBN 0205295843)
  • All incoming Freshman will be required to take the Music Theory Placement Test (MTPT). Students deemed proficient in the basic concepts of music theory (i.e. reading of clefs, key signatures, rhythms, intervals, and triads) will be enrolled in Music Theory I.
  • Students needing remedial instruction in music theory will be enrolled in Fundamentals of Music Theory. It is important to note that the Fundamentals of Music Theory course WILL NOT COUNT TOWARD THE MUSIC MAJOR OR MINOR DEGREE. Fundamentals of Music Theory is a course intended to prepare students for Music Theory I which is not offered again until the following Fall semester.