Music Department Competencies Developed

B.A. in Music

  • General Education
    • Competencies:
      • The ability to think, speak, and write clearly and effectively, and to communicate with precision, cogency, and rhetorical force.
      • An informed acquaintance with the mathematical and experimental methods of the physical and biological sciences; with the main forms of analysis and the historical and quantitative techniques needed for investigating the workings and developments of modern society.
      • An ability to address culture and history from a variety of perspectives.
      • Understanding of, and experience in thinking about, moral and ethical problems.
      • The ability to respect, understand, and evaluate work in a variety of disciplines.
      • The capacity to explain and defend views effectively and rationally.
      • Understanding of and experience in one or more art forms other than music.
  • Musicianship
    • Competencies:
      • The ability to hear, identify, and work conceptually with the elements of music such as rhythm, melody, harmony, structure, timbre, texture.
      • An understanding of and the ability to read and realize musical notation.
      • An understanding of compositional processes, aesthetic properties of style, and the ways these shape and are shaped by artistic and cultural forces.
      • An acquaintance with a wide selection of musical literature, the principal eras, genres, and cultural sources, for example, classical, jazz, popular, and world music forms.
      • The ability to develop and defend musical judgments.
  • Performance and Music Electives
    • Competencies:

      Students holding undergraduate liberal arts degrees must develop:
      • Ability in performing areas at levels consistent with the goals and objectives of the specific liberal arts degree program being followed.
      • Understanding of procedures for realizing a variety of musical styles.
      • Knowledge and/or skills in one or more areas of music beyond basic musicianship appropriate to the individual’s needs and interests, and consistent with the purposes of the specific liberal arts degree program being followed.

B.M. in Music Therapy

Essential Competencies, Experiences, and Opportunities (in addition to those stated for the B.A. Music):

  • Advanced keyboard skills, including the ability to play at sight, accompany, transpose, and improvise.
  • Ability to sight-sing and take aural dictation.
  • Skills in voice, especially as related to group singing. Ability to communicate using a basic repertory of traditional, folk, and popular songs.
  • Guitar skills sufficient to accompany self and ensembles. Ability to perform a basic repertory of traditional, folk, and popular songs in several keys, with or without printed music.
  • Knowledge of and performance ability on percussion and other instruments sufficient to facilitate rhythm-based musical experiences for individuals and groups.
  • Conducting skills adequate to the therapist’s needs in providing repertory and leadership to small and large vocal/instrumental ensembles.
  • Composition and arranging skills sufficient to compose songs with simple accompaniment; and to arrange, transpose, and simplify music compositions for small vocal and non-symphonic instrumental ensembles.
  • Movement skills to direct and move expressively in structured rhythmic and improvisatory movement experiences.
  • Knowledge of the basic principles of normal human development, exceptionality and psychopathology, principles of therapy, and the therapeutic relationship.
  • Knowledge of the basic foundations and principles of music therapy, including history and philosophy; the psychological, physiological, and sociological bases for the use of music as therapy; music therapy methods, techniques and materials with their appropriate applications to various client populations.
  • Knowledge of various client populations; client assessment; treatment planning; therapy implementation and evaluation; clinical documentation (both oral and written) and termination/discharge planning.
  • Knowledge of professional standards of clinical practice; professional role and ethics; interdisciplinary collaboration in designing and implementing treatment programs; supervision and administration.
  • Knowledge of research methods to be able to interpret information, demonstrate basic knowledge of historical, quantitative, and qualitative research, and to apply research findings to clinical practice in music therapy.

B.A. Music Education

Desirable Attributes:

The prospective music teacher should have:

  1. Personal commitment to the art of music, to teaching music as an element of civilization, and to encouraging the artistic and intellectual development of students, plus the ability to fulfill these commitments as an independent professional.
  2. The ability to lead students to an understanding of music as an art form, as a means of communication, and as a part of their intellectual and cultural heritage.
  3. The capability to inspire others and to excite the imagination of students, engendering a respect for music and a desire for musical knowledge and experiences.
  4. The ability to articulate logical rationales for music as a basic component of general education, and to present the goals and objectives of a music program effectively to parents, professional colleagues, and administrators.
  5. The ability to work productively within specific education systems and promote scheduling patterns that optimize music instruction.
  6. The ability to maintain positive relationships with individuals of various social and ethnic groups, and be empathetic with students and colleagues of differing backgrounds.
  7. The ability to understand, apply, and practice principles of professional ethics.
  8. The ability to evaluate ideas, methods, and policies in the arts, the humanities, and in arts education for their impact on the musical and cultural development of students.
  9. The ability and desire to remain current with developments in the art of music and in teaching, to make independent, in-depth evaluations of their relevance, and to use the results to improve musicianship and teaching skills.

In addition to those basic competencies outlined for the B.A. Music, the following apply to the preparation of music teachers:

  1. Conducting and Musical Leadership. The prospective music teacher must be a competent conductor, able to create accurate and musically expressive performances with various types of performing groups and in general classroom situations. Instruction in conducting includes score reading and the integration of analysis, style, performance practices, instrumentation, and conducting techniques. Laboratory experiences that give the student opportunities to apply rehearsal techniques and procedures are essential. Prospective teachers in programs with less focus on the preparation of ensemble conductors must acquire conducting and musical leadership skills sufficient to teach effectively in their area(s) of specialization.
  2. Arranging. The prospective music teacher must be able to arrange and adapt music from a variety of sources to meet the needs and ability levels of individuals, school performing groups, and in classroom situations.
  3. Functional Performance. In addition to the skills required for all musicians, functional performance abilities in keyboard and the voice are essential. Functional performance abilities in instruments appropriate to the student’s teaching specialization are also essential.
  4. Analysis/History/Literature. The prospective music teacher should be able to apply analytical and historical knowledge to curriculum development, lesson planning, and daily classroom and performance activities. Teachers should be prepared to relate their understanding of music with respect to styles, literature, multiple cultural sources, and historical development, both in general and as related to their area(s) of specialization.

Specialization Competencies

  1. General Music. Listed below are essential competencies and experiences for the general music teaching specialization:
    1. Musicianship, vocal, and pedagogical skills sufficient to teach general music.
    2. Knowledge of content, methodologies, philosophies, materials, technologies, and curriculum development for general music.
    3. The ability to lead performance-based instruction.
    4. Laboratory and field experiences in teaching general music.
  2. (2) Vocal/Choral Music.
    1. Vocal and pedagogical skill sufficient to teach effective use of the voice.
    2. Knowledge of content, methodologies, philosophies, materials, technologies, and curriculum development for vocal/choral music.
    3. Experiences in solo vocal performance and in ensembles. Ensembles should be varied both in size and nature.
    4. Performance ability sufficient to use at least one instrument as a teaching tool and to provide, transpose, and improvise accompaniments.
    5. Laboratory experience in teaching beginning vocal techniques individually, in small groups, and in larger classes.
  3. Instrumental Music. Listed below are essential competencies and experiences for the instrumental music teaching specialization:
    1. Knowledge of and performance ability on wind, string, and percussion instruments sufficient to teach beginning students effectively in groups.
    2. Knowledge of content, methodologies, philosophies, materials, technologies, and curriculum development for instrumental music.
    3. Experiences in solo instrumental performance and in ensembles. Ensembles should be varied both in size and nature.
    4. Laboratory experience in teaching beginning instrumental students individually, in small groups, and in larger classes.

Teaching Competencies

The musician-teacher must be able to lead students to competency, apply music knowledge and skills in teaching situations, and integrate music instruction into the process of P–12 education. Essential competencies are:

  1. Ability to teach music at various levels to different age groups and in a variety of classroom and ensemble settings in ways that develop knowledge of how music works syntactically as a communication medium and developmentally as an agent of civilization. This set of abilities includes effective classroom and rehearsal management.
  2. An understanding of child growth and development and an understanding of principles of learning as they relate to music.
  3. The ability to assess aptitudes, experiential backgrounds, orientations of individuals and groups of students, and the nature of subject matter, and to plan educational programs to meet assessed needs.
  4. Knowledge of current methods, materials, and repertories available in various fields and levels of music education appropriate to the teaching specialization.
  5. The ability to accept, amend, or reject methods and materials based on personal assessment of specific teaching situations.
  6. An understanding of evaluative techniques and ability to apply them in assessing both the musical progress of students and the objectives and procedures of the curriculum