UMBC logo
UMBC Department of Music
B.A. in Music
Students in the composition emphasis receive a solid grounding in music theory and composition, preparing them for graduate school and work as a professional musician.

Students are required to continue to study an instrument and perform while they take composition classes and private study, culminating in a senior recital of their works. Often performance faculty, all of whom are experts in contemporary performance techniques, serve as advisors or collaborators with student composers. Composition students benefit from use of the computer  music studios and the presence of professional recording facilities in the music department.


Core Requirements

All music majors, regardless of emphasis, take a series of core courses.

MUSC 125 Theory I: Basics of Music [3]
MUSC 126 Theory II: Harmony & Voice Leading [3]
MUSC 225 Theory III: Counterpoint [3]
MUSC 226

Theory IV: Expanded Harmony [3]

MUSC 227

Theory V: 20th Century Analysis [3]

MUSC 110 Musicianship Lab [1]
MUSC 111

Musicianship Lab II [1]

MUSC 210 Musicianship Lab III [1]
MUSC 211

Musicianship Lab IV [1]

A grade of "B" or better is required for MUSC 211

MUSC 178-A

Beginning Keyboard Skills Class [1]

MUSC 178-B Beginning Keyboard Skills Class [1]
MUSC 179-A Intermediate Keyboard Skills Class [1]
MUSC 179-B Intermediate Keyboard Skills Class [1] -

Or demonstrated piano proficiency

A grade of "B" or better is required for MUSC 179-B


Eight semesters of MUSC 191 - Recital Preparation [8]

MUSC 230 Musics of the World [3]
MUSC 321 Music History I [3]
MUSC 322 Music History II [3]
MUSC 380 Introduction to Conducting [3]
MUSC 480

Music, Art and Society [3]

MUSC 485 Selected Topics in Music History [3]

One elective - upper level, in Music or VPA [3]

Emphasis Requirements

In addition to the core courses listed above, students must complete the following emphasis requirements.

MUSC 193 Performance Studies for Music Majors - Four semesters of individual performance studies at 3 credits each [12]
MUSC 300-
MUSC 310

Ensembles - Six semesters of ensemble participation, with at least three semesters of participation in MUSC 309 New Music Ensemble and/or MUSC 306 Improvisational Ensemble [12]

MUSC 224 Instrumentation [3]
MUSC 311

Free Composition [3]

MUSC 312

Advanced Composition [3] (Note: students must submit a portfolio of compositions to the faculty at the conclusion of this course to be approved for continuation in composition emphasis.)

MUSC 427 Composing at the Computer I [3]
MUSC 401

Special Projects in Composition – Three semesters. (Note: Portfolio of compositions for the senior recital must be presented to the faculty at the completion of this course) [9]

MUSC 492 Senior Project - students will produce a recital of their compositions as a capstone project. Students are encouraged to records their compositions in the recording studio on campus [2]

UMBC Department of Music    /    PAHB 238    /    410-455-2942   /    /    site info    /    Music Home