Jul 18, 2024  
Rensselaer Catalog 2024-2025 
    
Rensselaer Catalog 2024-2025

Music B.S.


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The B.S. in Music focuses on preparing musicians for careers in creative professions combining depth in music with breadth in the sciences, media, and engineering. It advances music study within the technological university by preparing students for the multiplicity of roles available to musicians in the 21st century.

The core music curriculum consists of 40 credits. The music core may be taken as a standalone degree or as a dual major with various science and engineering disciplines. The curriculum detailed in this proposal can also be supplemented with 4-course, 16-credit minor in various interdisciplinary arts fields, including interactive arts, animation, and filmmaking.  

Portfolio Requirements

Applicants are required to submit a Statement of Intent, a Portfolio, and a Portfolio Description. There are no live auditions. For more information about how to submit these materials, please see the Admissions Office.

  • Statement of Intent: Students write a 1-2 page essay that describes their interest in the major and their goals. Please include completed course work in music, private music instruction, musical performance and production experience, or independent projects completed.
  • Portfolio: Students prepare a digital portfolio of musical materials comprised of 3-5 works that best represent their creative abilities. These may include, but are not limited to, audio and video recordings of compositions and performances, scores, and software programs. Acceptable formats for portfolio items are DOCX, PDF, AIFF, WAV, MP3, QUICKTIME, JPEG, or PNG.
  • Portfolio Description: Students describe each item in their portfolio, including the medium, year created, and their role in the creation of the work.

Outcomes of the Undergraduate Curriculum

Students who complete this curriculum will demonstrate:

  • an ability to evaluate musical works in relation to style, period, and social context.
  • an ability to effectively discuss and critique one’s own work and the work of others.
  • proficiency integrating technologies appropriate to creative practice.

First Year


Fall


Spring


Second Year


Fall


  • HASS Core OR History and Culture Course 4
  • Science Core Elective Credit Hours: 4
  • *Free Elective Credit Hours: 4
    • *ARTS 2700 is a recommended course for this elective (not required)

Music Practice (see footnote 3)


Spring


  • Credit Hours: 4
  • Science Core Elective Credit Hours: 4
  • HASS Core Elective Credit Hours: 4
  • HASS Core Elective OR History and Culture Course Credit Hours: 4
  • ​(See footnote 4 below)
  • Free Elective Credit Hours: 4
  • (OPTIONAL) Private Music Lesson or Ensemble Credit Hours: 1
    (See footnote 3 below)

Third Year


Please note: The third year of the program varies depending upon which semester the student chooses to take away following The Arch Summer Semester classes. Please note the following differences in curriculum:

  • If students are going to be away during the Fall semester of their junior year, they should take the listed courses for each term and any courses under the Fall Away Track for year three of their program.
     
  • If students are going to be away during the Spring semester of their junior year, they should take the listed courses for each term and any courses under the Spring Away Track for year three of their program.

The Arch Summer Semester*


*For more information on the ARCH process, please click here: The Arch 

  • Science Core Elective Credit Hours: 4
  • HASS Core Elective Credit Hours: 4
  • HASS Core Elective Credit Hours: 4
  • Free Elective or History and Culture course Credit Hours: 4
    • ​(see footnote 4 below)

Fall OR Spring


*Fall semester on campus is recommended if possible.

 

Fall or Spring


Fourth Year


Fall


  • Free Elective Credit Hours: 4
  • Free Elective or Culminating Experience Credit Hours: 4
    • (​Culminating Experience can be taken in the fall or spring of the final year, see footnote 5 below)
  • Free Elective or ARTS 4500  Credit Hours: 4
    • ​(Students whose semester away was the fall of the junior year will take ARTS 4500  in the fall of their final year)

Spring


  • Free Elective or Culminating Experience Credit Hours: 4
    • ​(Culminating Experience can be taken in the fall or spring of the final year, see footnote 5 below)
  • Free Elective or ARTS 4880  Credit Hours: 4
    • ​(ARTS 4880  can be taken if a student’s semester away was in the spring)
  • Free Elective Credit Hours: 4
  • Free Elective Credit Hours: 4

Footnotes


  1. Students are required to take an Inquiry course during their first year. For more information regarding HASS Inquiry (INQR) courses go to: https://info.rpi.edu/hass-inquiry.
  2. Students should take a HASS Communication Intensive course during their first three semesters.
  3. The practice requirement of the Music major includes 4 credits. These may be taken with 1-credit repeatable courses such as performing ensembles or private lessons, 4-credit courses, or 4 credits of coursework in creative technologies outside the Department of Arts as approved by special request.
  4. Music B.S. requires one music and culture course that should be taken in any of the first five semesters. See list below.
  5. Music B.S. requires a 4-credit Culminating Experience. See list below.

Practice Requirement


Culminating Experience


Credit Hours: 4

Select one of the following 4000-level music courses. All of the following can be repeated for additional credit.

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