Jul 21, 2024  
University Catalog 2023-2024 
University Catalog 2023-2024

Department of Music

Division of Fine Arts and Humanities

Blanche Francis Music Building Room 116 - (504) 520-7597 - https://www.xula.edu/department/musicdpt.html

The programs in the Department of Music have as their objective the preparation of qualified students to make effective and meaningful contributions to the discipline of music performance, and/or the teaching of music, and/or music scholarship. This preparation is accomplished through training in the classroom, the studio, through music technology and through actual performance venues. The objective of each program is to provide a foundation for further study and to help develop the musical skills required for a career as a musician - musician teacher, musician-artist, and the liberally educated musician.

Courses of Study

The Music Department offers two degrees: Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) and Bachelor of Music (B.M.). There are three courses of study. One leads to the B.A. and two lead to the B.M.

Bachelor of Arts - In the course of study leading to the Bachelor of Arts Degree, there is a broad coverage of the discipline of music that is designed to foster cross-disciplinary thinking and creativity. Emphasis is placed on the literature and theory of music, the ability to perform well in a major applied medium, and a strong intellectual grasp of the art of music and its relationship to other disciplines.

Performance - The Bachelor of Music degree is available to those students who demonstrate the musicianship and technical proficiency necessary for a concentration in vocal or instrumental performance. Students will be officially admitted into this Music Performance degree program only after they have successfully passed an audition for the music faculty, normally at the end of the sophomore year.

Music Education - A major in Music Education is offered in a program designed to prepare teachers of school music and leads to a Bachelor of Music degree. Observation and teaching experiences are required and are made possible with the assistance of cooperating teachers in local public and private schools. Official admission to the Teacher Education Program is granted according to the procedures outlined by the Division of Education and Counseling (See Education and Counseling Section ).

General Regulations

  1. All potential Music majors must pass an audition by members of the Music faculty before being officially accepted into the Department.
  2. All Music majors must see their academic advisor or the Music department head at the opening of each semester to obtain approval of their proposed course schedules.
  3. Music majors must maintain an average grade of not less than a “B” in their major applied area, and not less than a “C” in all other music courses required for the completion of their specific degree program. Students who do not satisfy these requirements may be dismissed from the department by vote of the Music faculty.
  4. Students taking the freshman year Music Theory Lecture and Lab courses (MUST 1030  and MUST 1040 ) must pass them with a grade of no less than a “C.” Students achieving a lower grade in either of these courses will be required to take the course over.
  5. Sophomore Proficiency Exams in Music: All Music majors must pass a sophomore level music reading/theory proficiency examination before enrolling in 3000 and 4000 level music theory courses. This exam is administered at the end of each spring semester.
  6. Functional Piano Exam: All Music majors who are not majoring in piano are required to take three consecutive semesters of applied piano study. Following this series of studies, non-piano Music majors will be required to pass a departmental Functional Piano Exam to determine functional proficiency in the use of the piano within their musical study and chosen areas of study.
  7. Conducting/Piano Proficiency Exam: Music Education majors must pass a piano proficiency test and a conducting proficiency examination before they will be permitted to do their teaching internship (Student Teaching).
  8. All Music Majors must past a Music Technology Exam before being allowed to register for senior level coursework. This exam will be administered in the spring of the junior year to determine the student’s proficiency in using music-related hardware and software.
  9. Music Department Senior Comprehensive Exams: All Music Liberal Arts majors must take the Music Department Senior Comprehensive Exam. This is an extensive examination which consists of three sections:
    • Section I is a written comprehensive on Music History and Theory. (All Music Liberal Arts majors are required to take this portion of the Exam.) It will be administered at the beginning of each spring semester.
    • Section II is an oral examination. For students giving a recital in fulfillment of Section II, this exam is given during the Recital Jury on the music and historical aspects of the proposed program. Other Music Liberal Arts majors will be assigned a topic for oral examination. The questions in this section will be pre-assigned by five members of the full-time faculty.
    • Section III of the Music Comprehensive Exam involves an option where the Music Liberal Arts major may choose either to give a Senior Recital or to give a seminar/document presentation on a topic that has been supervised by a music faculty member. The study for the seminar/document presentation must have been pre-approved by the department head. Approval for the final presentation will be given by the head after consultation with the supervising faculty member.
  10. Praxis Exam: Music Education majors must pass the music portion of the Praxis Exam or pass the Music Department Senior Comprehensive Exam before becoming eligible for graduation.

Ensemble Participation Requirements

  1. Every full-time music major is required to participate in one of the primary performing ensembles each semester he/she is in residence even if he/she has obtained the required hours in ensembles necessary to graduate.
  2. Music scholarship recipients are required to participate in at least two ensembles (a large and a small) each semester.
  3. The University Chorus and the Symphonic Band are the primary (large) vocal and instrumental ensembles. All instrumental majors must satisfy their prescribed ensemble requirement in the Symphonic Band and all Vocal and Piano majors must satisfy their prescribed ensemble requirement in the University Chorus.
  4. All instrumental and piano majors are required to have experience in a vocal ensemble. It is strongly urged that all instrumental majors participate for two semesters in the University Chorus. However, approval may be given by the department head to allow a student to participate in other vocal ensembles or to take private or class voice lessons.
  5. Since ensemble participation is a departmental, rather than a University requirement, the music department reserves the right to waive the required number of ensemble hours in special cases and to approve substitutions for primary ensemble requirements.


  1. All students in the Music Performance program must present both a Junior Recital and a Senior Recital. Other majors are encouraged to give Junior and/or Senior recitals if they are deemed capable to do so.
  2. Students in Music Education are not required to present a recital for graduation. However, all who can present a recital are urged to do so.
  3. Four to six weeks prior to the date chosen for a departmentally-sponsored recital, the student must perform the proposed program before a jury of the faculty. The quality of the performance should convince the jury that the recital will be representative of the student’s degree program. Only with the approval of the jury may the recital be presented. The applied instructor must be present for both hearing and recital.

Recital Class

  1. Every music major is required to perform in Recital Class at least once each semester on their major applied instrument; therefore, every full-time music major must register for recital class each semester of matriculation.
  2. At the discretion of the major applied music teacher, freshmen and transfer students may be exempt from the above requirement only in their first semester of study.
  3. Additional performance requirements for recital class may be established by the individual applied music instructor.

Applied Music Studies

  1. All music majors are required to take at least one hour of applied music in their major applied area each semester that they are in matriculation as full-time music students. This requirement holds even if the student has completed the number of applied hours prescribed in his/her individual program.
  2. Students are expected to make continuous progress in their major applied area in order to reach a level of proficiency that will be monitored by the entire music faculty, area juries, and the individual instructor. Failure to reach and/or maintain a level of applied performance proficiency, as determined by the music faculty, could result in dismissal from the Music Department.

Honors in Music Theory

Students who are eligible for this honor are music majors who have completed 20 hours in music theory with a minimum GPA in theory of 3.5 by the first half of the senior year. The student who elects to complete this program must apply to the department head who will review that student’s record, give final approval for admission into the program, and assist the student in obtaining a faculty member to supervise the final project. In the final semester of the senior year, the student must register for MUST 4500H , complete one of the three honors theory projects prescribed for this course, and receive a pass endorsement from the theory faculty who will give the final evaluation of the student’s project.


    Bachelor of ArtsBachelor of MusicNon-degree