School of Music

Undergraduate BulletinSchool of Music




The School of Music of the University of North Carolina School of the Arts prepares students for professional careers. Our goal is twofold: to enable students to attain their highest musical aspirations and to meet the challenge of succeeding in a highly competitive profession. With this in mind, we have designed rigorous programs of study.

In its conservatory setting, UNCSA provides an artistic environment in which each student pursues personal musical development. But the School of Music is also a professional training ground in which the student actively and realistically prepares for the practical aspects of making a living as a musician.

Each student pursues a course of musical study with an outstanding artist-faculty. As professionals in their own areas, faculty members are committed to continuing their own careers while sharing a wealth of experience and knowledge with their students.

The School of Music offers two different programs of study: a four-year curriculum leading to the Bachelor of Music degree and a two-year curriculum leading to the Undergraduate Arts Certificate in Music. Both the degree and the certificate are offered with concentrations in the following areas:

  • Brass (trumpet, horn, trombone, tuba and euphonium)
  • Composition
  • Guitar
  • Harp
  • Organ
  • Percussion
  • Piano
  • Strings (violin, viola, violoncello and double bass)
  • Voice
  • Woodwinds (flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon and saxophone)

Bachelor of Music (Four-year program) 
The Bachelor of Music program offers a student a thorough musical foundation coupled with the perspective of a liberal arts education. This mixture of music and liberal arts classes creates a well-rounded musician as well as one prepared for the demands of living in today's world. A student who may eventually choose to pursue graduate work in music should complete this course of study.

Undergraduate Arts Certificate in Music (Two-year program)
The Undergraduate Arts Certificate permits a student to concentrate entirely on musical studies in a rigorous yet flexible curriculum. The core of the certificate curriculum consists of applied work with an artist-faculty in the area of concentration, augmented by participation in ensembles as appropriate. The balance of the curriculum is flexible, reflecting the particular development and interests of the individual student, and draws from the music classroom courses offered in the degree program. These courses are chosen in consultation with the student's arts advisor and with the approval of the Associate Dean of the School of Music.

Bachelor of Music

Undergraduate Arts Certificate




A. Admissions Requirements

Admission to all undergraduate programs in the School of Music is by application and audition. Specific information about application and audition requirements is available on the UNCSA website.

Applicants for the Bachelor of Music degree or the Undergraduate Arts Certificate must hold a high school diploma or GED. In addition, degree-seeking applicants must meet the Minimum Course Requirements (MCRs) and Minimum Admission Requirements (MARs) of the University of North Carolina system. Specific information about MCRs and MARs, as well as TOEFL scores for international students, is available in the Office of Admissions section of the Bulletin.

To be admissible to any undergraduate program in the School of Music, applicants must possess the following essential qualifications:

  • Aural ability to discriminate discrete pitches;
  • Visual ability sufficient to read standard notated music;
  • Visual ability sufficient to recognize and interpret gestures of a conductor for concentrations requiring ensemble participation;
  • Fine motor skills sufficient to play a keyboard instrument regardless of area of concentration;
  • Ability to participate in group instruction.

B. Transfer Information

The School of Music accepts transfer credit for Music curriculum requirements from accredited undergraduate programs on a case-by-case basis. Only courses that have received a grade of “C” or better will be considered, and transfer credit may not account for more than 50 percent of the degree. Transfer credit will be determined by the Associate Dean of the School of Music and be based upon evaluation of the student's transcript and/or UNCSA School of Music placement assessments in consultation with the appropriate faculty. To receive consideration for transfer credit, a student must make a formal request in writing to the Associate Dean of the School of Music.



A. Jury and Recital Requirements

Undergraduate students are required to participate in all departmental juries. 

Undergraduate students are required to present a full recital during their senior year. A student concentrating in performance satisfies the requirement through successful completion of both a juried recital hearing and a public performance of the same recital program. A student concentrating in composition satisfies the requirement through successful production of a recital of their own works under the guidance of their composition faculty. 

B. Assessment of Progress

A student’s overall progress is contingent upon both continued improvement and development in the artistic area of study as well as academic performance in the classroom. While assessment in a conservatory environment is continuous, specific information about progress is intentionally gathered from faculty at both the middle and end of each semester. Based upon this information, the Associate Dean makes recommendations to the Dean regarding Warning and Probationary Status for individual students who are not meeting expectations.

C. Minimum Grade Point Averages

Students in the School of Music are required to achieve a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 during both semesters of their C1 level of study, and a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.3 during all remaining semesters of study. In addition, by the time students are classified at the C3 level of study, they must have achieved and then maintain a 2.0 cumulative GPA in General Education requirements.

D. Warning, Probation, and Non-Continuation

Students who do not meet expectations and/or GPA requirements are placed on Warning or Probationary Status. Failure to meet expectations and/or GPA requirements while on Probationary Status ultimately results in non-continuation in the program. Specific information about the Undergraduate Policy on Student Probation and Continuation is available in the Institutional Policies section of the Bulletin.