Office in University Center for the Arts, Room 120
(970) 491-5529

The Bachelor of Arts in Music (B.A.) allows students to study music within a larger context of a liberal arts education. In comparison to the curriculum leading to the Bachelor of Music (B.M.), less emphasis is placed on studies specifically in music, with greater flexibility for studies outside of music. In lieu of a larger number of credits in music as required for the B.M., the B.A. student completes 21 elective credits in areas outside of music. In addition, the completion of a capstone paper, project, or recital (half recital) is required during the senior year.

Program-level Learning Objectives

  • Hear, identify, and work conceptually with elements of music such as rhythm, melody, harmony, structure, timbre, and texture through composition, improvisation, and performance in multiple musical styles.
  • Develop and defend musical judgments and demonstrate a synthesis of knowledge and/or skills in one or more areas of music.
  • Articulate knowledge of a wide selection of musical literature, the principal eras, genres, and cultural sources.
  • As part of a well-rounded liberal arts program, B.A. in Music majors are also expected to think, speak, and write clearly, and effectively address and defend diverse cultural, historical, moral, scientific, and ethical issues (both orally and in written form) in subject matter related to music, other art forms, and outside disciplines.

Music Audition

In addition to applying to CSU through the Office of Admissions, a successful audition with CSU Music faculty is required for entrance into the B.A. in Music. Please visit the music website for Music Audition Information.

Music Program Fee

A music program fee is assessed with undergraduate and graduate music majors and minors, per semester. The fee does not apply to the following students: online degree students, summers-only master's degree students, music therapy students in an internship off-campus, music education students who are student teaching off-campus, and music minors who are not actively enrolled in any lessons or ensembles. Please visit the Office of the Provost and Executive Vice President for special course fees.

A minimum grade of C is required in all music courses used to satisfy the requirements of the major programs (B.A. and B.M.) in music.

Effective Fall 2022

CO 150College Composition (GT-CO2)1A3
MU 117Music Theory I 3
MU 118Music Theory II 3
MU 127Aural Skills I 1
MU 128Aural Skills II 1
MU 131Introduction to Music History and Literature (GT-AH1)3B3
MU 1501Piano Class I 1
MU 151B1Piano Class II: Performance, Composition, and General Studies 1
Applied Music Instruction (see list below)2 2
MU *** Ensemble (see list below)3 2
Quantitative Reasoning1B3
Electives 5-7
 Total Credits 30
MU 217Music Theory III 3
MU 218Music Theory IV 3
MU 227Aural Skills III 1
MU 228Aural Skills IV 1
Applied Music Instruction (see list below)2 2
MU *** Ensemble (see list below)3 2
L*** *** Foreign Language 6
Advanced Writing23
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion1C3
Non-Music Electives4 6
 Total Credits 30
Upper-Division Music History (see list below)4A,4B6
Upper-Division Music Theory (see list below) 2-3
Biological and Physical Sciences3A3
Historical Perspectives3D3
Non-Music Electives4 6
Electives 7-8
 Total Credits 31
Select one from the following: 1
Arts and Humanities3B3
Biological and Physical Sciences3A4
Social and Behavioral Sciences3C3
Non-Music Electives4 9
Elective5 3
 Total Credits 29
 Program Total Credits: 120

Applied Music Instruction - Lower-Division

MU 272AApplied Music Instruction: Euphonium1-2
MU 272BApplied Music Instruction: French Horn1-2
MU 272CApplied Music Instruction: Trombone1-2
MU 272DApplied Music Instruction: Trumpet1-2
MU 272EApplied Music Instruction: Tuba1-2
MU 272GApplied Music Instruction: Harpsichord1-2
MU 272HApplied Music Instruction: Organ1-2
MU 272IApplied Music Instruction: Piano1-2
MU 272JApplied Music Instruction: Percussion1-2
MU 272KApplied Music Instruction: Guitar1-2
MU 272LApplied Music Instruction: Harp1-2
MU 272MApplied Music Instruction: String Bass1-2
MU 272NApplied Music Instruction: Viola1-2
MU 272OApplied Music Instruction: Violin1-2
MU 272PApplied Music Instruction: Violoncello1-2
MU 272QApplied Music Instruction: Voice1-2
MU 272RApplied Music Instruction: Bassoon1-2
MU 272SApplied Music Instruction: Clarinet1-2
MU 272TApplied Music Instruction: Flute1-2
MU 272UApplied Music Instruction: Oboe1-2
MU 272VApplied Music Instruction: Saxophone (Alto)1-2

Ensemble Courses

MU 201Men's Chorus1
MU 202University Chorus1
MU 204Marching Band1
MU 205Concert Band1
MU 206Colorado State University Concert Orchestra1
MU 300Women's Chorus1
MU 302University Orchestra1
MU 304Symphonic Band1
MU 305Colorado State University Concert Choir1
MU 309Jazz Ensemble1
MU 310Jazz Combo1
MU 400Colorado State University Chamber Choir1
MU 401Opera Theater1-2
MU 402Theater/Chamber Orchestra1
MU 404Symphonic Wind Ensemble1
MU 407Accompanying1
MU 408Chamber Music1

Upper-Division Music Theory

MU 317Music Theory V2
MU 318Arranging and Orchestration2
MU 417Counterpoint3
MU 418Advanced Orchestration2
MU 419Electronic Music Composition2

Upper-Division Music History

Code Title AUCC Credits
MU 332 History of Jazz 4A,4B 3
MU 334 Perspectives in Early Music History 4A,4B 3
MU 335 Music of the Common Practice Era 4A,4B 3
MU 430 20th and 21st Century Music 4A,4B 3
MU 431 American Music 4A,4B 3

 Students with previous keyboard experience can test out of MU 150 and/or MU 151B and use the extra credit(s) toward electives.


First-year voice students must take MU 172A and MU 172B (total of four credits), and then take MU 272Q for one credit each semester of the second year (a total of two credits); instrumentalists take MU 272A-MU 272P or MU 272R-MU 272V on major instrument for one credit each semester of the first 2 years (total of four credits).


Students must participate in an ensemble during each semester in which they are enrolled in MU 172A, MU 172B, MU 272A-MU 272VMU 472A-MU 472V. At least once during the program of study, this must be achieved by taking MU 408 or through another small ensemble experience.


21 credits of non-music courses in one or more fields of study, including at least 12 upper-division (300- to 400-level) credits.


Select enough elective credits to bring the program total to a minimum of 120 credits, of which at least 42 must be upper-division (300- to 400-level). 21 elective credits must be outside of the field of music.


Distinctive Requirements for Degree Program:
To declare this major, must audition with department. A grade of C or better is required in all music courses used to satisfy major requirements.

Semester 1CriticalRecommendedAUCCCredits
CO 150College Composition (GT-CO2) X1A3
MU 117Music Theory IX  3
MU 127Aural Skills IX  1
MU 150Piano Class IX  1
Applied Music Instruction (see list on Program Requirements tab)X  1
MU*** Ensemble (See List on Concentration Requirements Tab)X  1
Quantitative ReasoningX 1B3
Elective   2-3
 Total Credits   16
Semester 2CriticalRecommendedAUCCCredits
MU 118Music Theory IIX  3
MU 128Aural Skills IIX  1
MU 131Introduction to Music History and Literature (GT-AH1)X 3B3
MU 151BPiano Class II: Performance, Composition, and General StudiesX  1
Applied Music Instruction (see list on Program Requirements tab)X  1
MU*** Ensemble (See List on Concentration Requirements Tab)   1
Electives   3-4
AUCC 1B (MATH) and CO 150 must be completed by the end of Semester 2.X   
 Total Credits   14
Semester 3CriticalRecommendedAUCCCredits
MU 217Music Theory IIIX  3
MU 227Aural Skills IIIX  1
Advanced Writing  23
L*** *** Foreign Language   3
Applied Music Instruction (see list on Program Requirements tab)X  1
MU*** Ensemble (See List on Program Requirements Tab)X  1
Non-Music Elective   3
 Total Credits   15
Semester 4CriticalRecommendedAUCCCredits
MU 218Music Theory IVX  3
MU 228Aural Skills IVX  1
Applied Music InstructionX  1
MU*** Ensemble (See List on Program Requirements Tab)X  1
L*** *** Foreign Language   3
Diversity, Equity, and InclusionX 1C3
Non-Music Elective   3
 Total Credits   15
Semester 5CriticalRecommendedAUCCCredits
Upper-Division Music History (See List on Program Requirements Tab) X4A,4B3
Upper-Division Music Theory (See List on Program Requirements Tab)   3
Biological and Physical Sciences  3A3
Non-Music Elective   3
Elective   3
 Total Credits   15
Semester 6CriticalRecommendedAUCCCredits
Upper-Division Music History (See List on Program Requirements Tab) X4A,4B3
Historical Perspectives  3D3
MU XXX   3
Non-Music Elective   3
Electives   4
 Total Credits   16
Semester 7CriticalRecommendedAUCCCredits
MU XXX   3
Biological and Physical Sciences  3A4
Social and Behavioral Sciences  3C3
Non-Music Elective   3
Elective   3
 Total Credits   16
Semester 8CriticalRecommendedAUCCCredits
Select one course from the following:   1
RecitalX 4C 
ThesisX 4C 
Non-Music ElectivesX  6
Arts and HumanitiesX 3B3
The benchmark courses for the 8th semester are the remaining courses in the entire program of study. X   
 Total Credits   13
 Program Total Credits:   120