For Students

Undergraduate Studies

Back to main
Undergraduate Studies.

Music 1.0 Major

Undergraduate Concentration Requirements

The curriculum required of music majors provides a rigorous, balanced exposure to the essential disciplines of liberal arts music studies, including composition, ethnomusicology, musicology, performance, science and technology, and theory. Normally, students declare the major in music and choose a member of the full-time faculty as major advisor during the spring semester of their sophomore year. Students submit declaration of major forms electronically to their advisor of choice, who will review and respond to their request. Undergraduate students who major in music are required to take eleven courses in the department. Students considering graduate studies in music or careers in music are advised to take additional courses beyond the eleven required for the major; please see your advisor for a list of specific recommendations. No course may be used to fulfill more than one requirement in the major, though performance courses and some composition courses may be repeated for credit.

Eleven courses (ten credits) are required for the undergraduate major in music:

  1. History of Western Music (two 1.0 credit courses): MUS 142 & 143.
  2. Principles of Tonal Theory I and II (two 1.0 credit courses): MUS 101 & 102.
  3. Advanced Theory (one 1.0 credit course): one course from the MUS 103–110 range.
  4. Ethnomusicology: World, Ethnic, Folk, and Traditional (two 1.0 credit courses): MUS 186, and one course from the MUS 106–110, 171–185, or 187–196 ranges.
  5. Western Popular Music, Jazz, Global Musics, or Cultural Theory (one 1.0 credit course): one course from the MUS 187–196 range.
  6. Performance: Instrumental/Vocal Study (two 0.5 credit courses): MUS 153 (01 and/or 02). 
  7. Electives: Theory, Composition, Ethnomusicology, Musicology, Performance (two 1.0 credit courses): two courses chosen from the MUS 111–141 and/or 145–199 ranges.

Note: the prerequisite for all 100-level courses is MUS 10, or exemption from that course through the Music Theory Assessment, offered at the start of each semester. Contact Director of Undergraduate Studies, Frank Lehman for details.

In addition to the courses listed above, music majors must enroll in a performing ensemble course (MUS 69–96) for four semesters. Ensembles may be taken for credit or non-credit; however, credit for ensembles does not count toward the eleven courses required for the major. Courses taken to fulfill the foundation, distribution, concentration, or minor requirements may not be taken pass-fail.

Courses at New England Conservatory of Music

A reciprocal arrangement between Tufts University and New England Conservatory of Music allows students at both institutions to select a limited number of courses at either school that may be applied toward their respective degrees. Students may not take a course at the conservatory if it is offered at Tufts. This agreement does not apply to summer school. Students must first receive permission from their primary dean and then from the dean of the second institution.