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Program of Study: To be planned with the department consultant before the end of the sophomore year. Prospective music majors should complete the prerequisites by the end of their sophomore year and are encouraged to complete them by the end of their first year. By the end of her first year as a music major, the student should select a faculty adviser.

Prerequisite: BC 1001 or 1002, MUSI V 1002 Fundamentals of Western Music, and MUSI V 1312 Introductory Ear-training. Prospective music majors are advised to satisfy the prerequisites prior to their declaration as majors or before the end of their sophomore year. This requirement may be fulfilled either through successful completion of the courses or satisfactory performance on examinations administered each semester by the department.

Courses: At least 40 points, including MUSI V 2318-V 2319 Diatonic Harmony and Counterpoint; V 3321-V 3322 Chromatic Harmony and Counterpoint; four semesters of eartraining, unless the student is exempt by exam; the following two history courses: V 3128 History of Western Music I: Middle Ages to Baroque and V 3129 History of Western Music II: Classical to 20th Century; and at least three 3000- or 4000-level electives in her area of interest (theory, history, composition, or ethnomusicology). The remaining points are chosen from 2000- to 4000-levels. No more than 6 points of 2000-level courses and no more than 4 points of instrumental or vocal lessons will count toward the major.

Senior Project: In the fall semester of the senior year, a major must enroll in BC 3992, Senior Seminar for Music Majors in which she will write a paper which deals with primary sources. In the spring semester of the senior year, a student will either work with her adviser to expand the paper written in the senior seminar by taking BC 3990, Senior Project: Music Research, or she will take BC 3991 Senior Project: Music Repertoire and prepare an hour-long vocal or instrumental recital, or compose an original composition.

Keyboard Proficiency: Music majors will be required to take a keyboard proficiency exam, which must be arranged by making an appointment with a member of the piano faculty, immediately upon declaration of the major. Those who do not pass the exam will be required to take MUSI W 1517x-W 1518y, for 1 point each term, which will count against the maximum 4 points allowed toward completion of the major.

Languages: For students who plan to do graduate work in music, the study of German, French, Italian, and/or Latin is recommended.

Note: With the permission of Gail Archer, Barnard Director, students may take lessons at the Manhattan School of Music or the Juilliard School. For non-majors, there is a six semester limit, but majors may continue for the remainder of their program.

Practice Rooms: Piano practice rooms are available, at a nominal fee, upon application to the Music Department in 319 Milbank. Application should be made during the first week of classes. Preference in assigning hours is given to students taking piano instruction, majors, and concentrators, in order of application. The organ studio in St. Paul's Chapel is available for organ practice. Arrangements should be made with Mary Monroe, Associate in Organ Performance, during the first week of classes.


The ethnomusicology track combines the social science of music in such courses as the Social Science of Music and Asian Music Humanities, together with anthropology as a regular option for all students.  All  special majors in ethnomusicology must take two courses in anthropology at the recommendation  of the Barnard anthropology department in consultation with ethnomusicology faculty at Columbia.

Course for an ethnomusicology track in the music major

Pre-requisite:  One semester of Introduction to Music  BC1001x or 1002y

MUSI V2318 Diatonic Harmony/Counterpoint (3 credits)
MUSI V2319 Diatonic Harmony/Counterpoint (3 credits)
MUSI V2314 Ear Training I (1 credit)
MUSI V2315 Ear Training II (1 credit)
MUSI V3420 Social Science of Music (3 credits)
Up to 4 performance credits (lessons or ensembles)
One 3000-level western music history course (3 credits)
One Asian Humanities-Music (AHMM) course (3 credits)
Three ethnomusicology electives, one at the 2000 level and the others from the upper division electives (9 credits)
Two courses in Anthropology, one at the introduction to cultural anthropology level; the other, an elective (6 credits)
Ethnographic thesis of 30-40 pages, developed over the senior year (6 credits)


Courses for the minor: Four terms of theory, four terms of ear-training, and two terms of history.

Performance Activities
Participation in the following activities is open to all members of the University community.

Music majors are urged to join at least one of the groups. Students who wish to receive course credit may register for the courses as listed.

Columbia University Orchestra and Chamber Ensemble. Jeffrey Milarsky, conductor. See MUSI V 1591x-1592y for the audition schedule and description of activities.

Chamber Ensemble. Deborah Bradley, Director of the Music Performance Program. See MUSI V 1598x-1586y for audition information and description of activities.

Barnard-Columbia Chorus and Chamber Singers. Gail Archer, director. See MUSI V 1593x-1594y and MUSI V 1595x-1596y for audition information and description of activities.

Columbia University Jazz Ensemble. Christopher Washburne, director. See MUSI V 1618x-1619y for audition information and description of activities.

World Music Ensemble. See MUSI V1625x-V1626y for auditional information and description activities.

Instrumental and Vocal Instruction. With appropriate prior approval, qualified students may take music lessons, one course per term, for a maximum of six terms. Only the music major and minor may take lessons every term.

Collegium Musicum. Auditions are held at the beginning of each term. The aim of the Collegium Musicum is to perform neglected and unfamiliar vocal and instrumental music. Activities are supervised by the graduate student director, and the Collegium usually gives two public concerts each semester.