Jul 23, 2024  
2024-2025 Undergraduate Catalog 
2024-2025 Undergraduate Catalog

Music Major, B.M. (Music Education: Vocal/General Concentration)

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Majors A-Z

Department Information

Department of Music
PO Box 70661
Phone (423) 439-4270
Web Address: www.etsu.edu/cas/music

The Department of Music at East Tennessee State University was established in 1946. The University is a fully accredited member of the National Association of Schools of Music. The Department offers the Bachelor of Music with concentrations in Performance and Music Education and the Bachelor of Arts with concentrations in Contemporary Music Performance, Composition, Music History, and Performance. The Department of Music is a vibrant community of students and faculty committed to the highest level of musical artistry and academic achievement.

Admission Requirements

Any student applying to major or minor in music at both the undergraduate and graduate levels must first meet the general university admission requirements. Once admitted to the university, the student must audition for admission to the music degree program. Auditions are held on announced dates during the academic year and may also be scheduled by appointment. Undergraduate auditions may be performed via recording if the student lives more than 150 miles from campus. 

Students will be notified of their acceptance or denial to be a music major in the Department of Music within ten business days of the audition. If accepted, an academic advisor will assist the student in determining courses to be taken to begin the program of study. Students who are denied acceptance may still register for applied music lessons and for ensembles. Students who are denied acceptance may audition again, but no more than once per calendar year. A student who is denied acceptance three times is no longer eligible to audition.

Students who are accepted for admission to the music or jazz studies minor programs must declare that minor prior to reaching 60 credits of coursework to ensure that the program of study can be completed before graduation.

For complete information about auditions see the department web page: www.etsu.edu/cas/music

Undergraduate Music Theory and Aural Skills Diagnostic Exam

Before a student begins a music degree, they will take the Music Theory and Aural Skills Diagnostic Exam. Students must score a minimum of 85% on the exam, or they must take MUSC 1100 - Music Fundamentals  prior to enrollment in MUSC 1300 - Theory & Aural Skills I . Students who meet or exceed the 85% minimum are clear to enroll directly in MUSC 1300 

Applied Music

Music majors must register for applied music courses (private instruction) in their major area of performance as part of their degree programs. Students may register for either one or two credits per semester, depending on the degree program which they are pursuing. Each credit is for one half-hour lesson, with the expectation of six hours of practice per week. A fee of $200 per credit is assessed.  For more information about course fees (Click here).

Students may advance in applied music course levels (1, 2, 3) through the successful completion of the level advancement process assigned by faculty as part of the courses. Students must spend a minimum of two semesters of study at each level before attempting level advancement. Students may not exceed four semesters at level 1 and six semesters at level 2. Students who advance to level 3 may continue to enroll indefinitely.


Performing experience in ensembles is a vital part of the training of all musicians. Thus, all music majors are required to participate in a major ensemble every semester of full-time enrollment. Students are not limited to a specific number of ensembles, but music majors must enroll for a minimum of ten (10) non-ensemble credits each semester of full-time attendance.

Transfer Students
Students transferring to East Tennessee State University from another college or university are required to take an audition. Student transcripts will be reviewed prior to acceptance into the Department of Music.

Students wishing more information regarding the Department of Music or wanting to be advised, can contact us at:
(423) 439-4270
or email us at music@etsu.edu
or visit www.etsu.edu/music

Degree Requirements: 120 credits

General Education 41-42 credits
Major Total Requirement 79 credits
     Major Core    (25 credits)
     Concentration    (54 credits)
     Piano Proficiency
     Sightreading Levels I & II
     Independent Musicianship
     Half Recital
     Program Notes
     Recital Attendance
TOTAL 120 credits

Suggested Four-Year Program of Study: MUSC-BM (MUEV)   

Compass Core Curriculum  

These requirements include earning 41-42 credits in Strengthening Foundations, Understanding Natural and Social Worlds, Exploring Connections, Cultivate Artistic Awareness, and Growing as an Individual and Global Citizen categories.

Total Requirements for Music Major: 79 credits

Music Major Core Requirements: 25 credits

Music Education Vocal/General Concentration: 54 credits

No Minor Required but Recommended

A minor is not required for this degree, however the Secondary Education minor or the Master of Arts in Teaching is required for certification by the State of Tennessee.

Non-Course Requirements

Piano Proficiency

Students in the Bachelor of Music, Music Education concentrations are required to meet a standard proficiency level on piano. This is assessed through a Piano Proficiency Examination that is a graduation requirement for the degree program. Students enrolled in MUSC 1020 - Class Piano II  must attempt required Piano Proficiency Exam at the end of the semester. Failure to pass the Piano Proficiency Exam requires enrollment in MUSC 1801 - Applied Piano Level I  in all future semesters until the Piano Proficiency Exam is successfully passed.

Students who matriculate with prior piano training may request to take the Piano Proficiency Examination when they begin the degree program. If the student passes the exam, they will be exempt from the Class Piano courses in the curriculum and they have fulfilled the Piano Proficiency Examination graduation requirement. If the student does not pass the Piano Proficiency Examination, they must take the Class Piano courses as prescribed in the program of study. 

Students in the Bachelor of Music, Music Education concentrations are required to pass the Piano Proficiency Examination prior to Residency I. 

Sight Reading

Students in the B.M. concentrations must successfully pass two sight reading proficiency examinations. The examinations will be administered by the applied faculty and are part of the requirements for applied level advancement. The first from applied level I to II and the second from applied level II to III. The examination may be administered at the time of the level advancement performance jury or scheduled separately.

Recital Performance

Students in the B.M. Music Education concentrations must perform a solo work in public each semester. “In public” includes studio recitals, department recital hour, half-hour or full-hour recitals, or other public events as approved by the applied instructor.

To complete the degree, students must perform and pass a half-hour recital (typically given during the senior year). The half-hour recital may only be presented after a student has been admitted to Level III applied lessons. Repertoire requirements and assessment procedures for the recital will be provided by applied faculty.

*Recital Attendance

As a music major it is important to experience a variety of musical performances in different genres, styles, and forces. In order to ensure this occurs during the student’s program of study, the ETSU Department of Music requires all music majors to attend the following music recitals (concerts/performances). This is a standard requirement for  universities accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music. To track attendance at these events, music majors are required to enroll in MUSC 1111 - Recital Attendance  every semester. This is a zero credit class graded as pass/fail. 

Program Notes

Students giving their half-hour recital must write and submit program notes to the Department of Music faculty program committee. These notes must meet the requirements for program notes (provided by the applied faculty). If the submitted program notes are not of the quality necessary for publication, students are required to revise the program notes as requested by the faculty program committee until the program notes meet the required standard. 

Major Field Test

A major field test is required for graduating students. Please see advisor for more information.

Additional Information

Click here to view Degree and Graduation Requirements  for all ETSU students.

CSCI 1100  or Proficiency Exam: Must be completed to meet Bachelor’s Degree Requirements.

Most minors range from 18-24 credits. Those few minors with more than 24 credits may affect the number of free electives allowed.

See the Music Department  page for detailed information on half recital, full recital, piano proficiency, recital attendance, and other program requirements.   

Licensure Certification: Students interested in pursuing a teacher licensure program for certification should contact the advisor in the Office of Student Services, 321 Warf-Pickel Hall, College of Education. Students will major in the subject they wish to teach and minor in Secondary Education.

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Majors A-Z