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Our Curriculum
at Utah State University

 revised fall, 2014

We hope this page answers your curricular questions about our program

Music Education Guidelines and Procedures

Advisors for Music Education
Director, Instrumental: Thomas P. Rohrer
• Choral: Cory Evans
• General/Elementary: Leslie Timmons
• Guitar: Corey Christiansen
• Individual Studio Professors (list)

Degree Program:

The Bachelor of Music Degree in Music Education prepares students to serve effectively in vocal, instrumental, and general music positions in elementary and secondary schools.  The student may specialize in one of the following areas of emphasis:

Strings (Orchestra)
Winds and Percussion (Band)


To enter the Music Department at Utah State University as a major in Music Education, it is necessary that a student meet with his/her advisor for an audition.  New freshmen admitted to USU in good standing qualify for admission to this major, pending the audition.  Transfer students from other institutions or from other USU majors need a 2.5 total GPA for admission to this major in good standing, also pending audition.  In addition, a 3.00 GPA is required for entrance to the Secondary Teacher Education Program.

Auditions: All students (i.e., new freshmen and transfer students) must successfully complete an application/audition  process with their major area (instrument or voice) to be accepted as a major.  Upon successful completion of the audition (minimum Level I in the respective area), the area faculty will indicate on the Scholarship Audition form the student’s musical readiness to enter the program.

Incoming Students.  It is recommended that incoming prospective students complete an audition during Music Department scholarship auditions the preceding February.  These serve as auditions for admission to the program as well as for scholarship consideration.  Auditions can be arranged by contacting the following:

Student Services (435-797-3015)
Department of Music
Utah State University
4015 Old Main Hill
Logan, Utah  84322-4015
(435) 797-3730

Current Students.  USU students, already studying with university faculty, may audition for the Music Education program by performing at an area jury at the end of any semester.  Students may audition three times for the Music Education before being removed from consideration.

Pre-Music Major.  A student can be accepted into the department as "pre-music" after completing a successful audition in their area of study. Only accepted pre-music or music majors can take courses in the music department except for: Individual Instruction (non-major), ensembles (some require an audition), Intro to Music (1010), Music Fundamentals (1100), Masterpieces of Music (3010) and History of Jazz (3020). Students designated as pre-music must pass a performance jury in their first year to be accepted fully as a major.


Every Music Education major is expected to take individual instruction on his/her major instrument or voice each semester he/she is enrolled at USU.  Music majors are also required to take a jury examination each semester.  Juries are held to measure progress in individual performance, and they serve as the final examination for individual instruction courses.  Members of the music faculty are assigned to various instrumental/vocal areas for purpose of this evaluation.

Jury Examinations

Students must complete at least Level I by the end of the student’s first year to continue as a music major.  This is an initial requirement for entry to the program.  Proficiency in individual performance is defined by a series of proficiency levels for each instrument and voice, defined by the individual studio teachers.  Completing Level VI is the minimum requirement for graduation with a Bachelor of Music Degree in Music Education.  Completing Level III is the minimum requirement for sophomore proficiency examination for a major in Music Education.  This exam is taken during the spring of the sophomore year.  Jury examinations are held fall and spring semesters and are used to determine the proficiency level of each student.

Piano Proficiency Requirements

Every music major not majoring in piano or organ must pass the piano proficiency requirements.  This is done by passing the Keyboard Harmony Sequence (MUSC 1170, 1180).  Students should consult Professor Dennis Hirst, Piano Proficiency Coordinator, and the annual Music Department Handbook for specific requirements and competencies.

Recital Participation

Each Music Education major is encouraged to appear in an area recital each semester and is also required to participate in a Music Department Student Recital at least once each year.  Music Department Student recitals are held one selected (and predetermined) Thursdays during the semester.  Application forms are obtained from studio teachers or the Music Department Office and must include the signature of a faculty member.  “Best dress” is the appropriate attire for performance in these recitals.  In weeks where not recital is scheduled, performance areas may schedule workshops or masterclasses.

Senior Recitals

All students majoring in Music Education are required to participate in a formal senior recital, but  such recitals may be shared by two or three music majors with the permission of the advisor.

The scheduling of senior recitals should be done through Edie DeSpain during fall semester of the year of graduation.  the Senior Recital Checklist should be picked up from Mrs. DeSpain in early fall.  It is strongly recommended that you schedule your senior recital early to avoid time and scheduling conflicts!

Four weeks prior to a senior recital, a faculty jury of at least three persons will hear sufficient portions of the recital to determine whether preparation is adequate and whether the recital is authorized to take place.  If the level of preparation is not adequate, the student will be placed on probation until adequate preparation is demonstrated.  Following the presentation of the approved recital, the same jury will determine whether the student adequately completed the senior recital requirement and will provide the Music Department Office with written certification of that completion for inclusion in the student’s file.

Recital and Concert Attendance

Students are required to attend a minimum of five recitals and five concerts each semester while in attendance the USU.  Examples of recitals and concerts are faculty and students recitals, Chamber Music Society of Logan performances, guest performing artist series, etc.  Please note that all student and faculty recitals are free with valid student activity card.  To keep track of attendance, students are required to sign the program of the recital or concert attended as well as having a faculty member’s signature before submitting is to the Music Department Office within one week after the performance.  Programs will be discarded once recorded unless otherwise requested by the student.


•     Students should consult the annual department handbook for suggested curriculum choices each semester.  Students are also responsible for comparing courses taken with department Green Sheets and the Schedule of Classes, particularly for university studies requirements (transfer students particularly note).  There are three advising sources that Music Education majors should use for specific curricular issues:

1.   Music Education area advisor: Music courses
2.   CCA Advising Center (UR 109): University Core courses
3.   Secondary Education: Secondary Teacher Education Program courses

•     Any course failures may jeopardize a student’s ability to graduate at a predetermined time.

•     Students should be sure to register for the Secondary Teacher Education Program four semesters before they plan to student teach (i.e. Fall semester + 1 year before spring student teaching).  This should occur in the first four weeks of the semester because the writing test component is only offered at that time.  The listening test is offered after the writing exam is completed.

•     Students should plan to complete all curriculum, save for senior recital, before student teaching, and the senior recital is recommended prior to student teaching.

•     Students must apply for student teaching a year in advance.  Check with Secondary Education for specific deadlines.

•     Students are recommended to see their area advisors at least once each semester before scheduling for classes to ensure proper sequence of curriculum.

•     Instrumental music education majors should make every effort to particupate in Instrumental Conducting Ensemble (I.C.E.), a lab ensemble for junior/senior-level advanced conducting.  Students enroll for I.C.E., the ensemble, each fall and additionally  register for Advanced Instrumental Conducting (MUSC 4240) their junior (or senior) year.  Likewise, Choral Music Education majors  register for the spring course with instrumental majors using the lab group as their choral ensemble requirement.