2011-2013 Undergraduate Catalog

The Department of Music

Ms. Dorothea Cromley, Chair
CI 119, (406) 657-2350

Professors:  Cromley
Assistant Professors:  Fenderson, Nagel, Roberts
Professors Emeritus:  Behm, Perkins, Smith

Undergraduate Degrees and Majors

Bachelor of Arts
Major:  Music
Options:  Performance, Teaching Licensure
Track:  Business
Minor:  Music

Mission of the Department

The Department of Music educates musicians by combining a thorough professional training with a sound general education.  It is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music.  The MSU Billings Department of Music stresses high standards of performance, a strong theoretical background, a broad exposure to music history, opportunities in pedagogy, and a significant encounter with other academic disciplines.

Program Choices

The varied functions of music in the world today present many interesting and challenging opportunities to students as teachers, performers, creative artists, and employees in the music industry.  Because of the many opportunities available to students, the faculty of the Department of Music has established a program of training which allows first year students to determine the course of study they may wish to follow.  Through an emphasis in music history and theory, as well as instruction in performance participation in various ensembles, students are prepared for graduate study, performance, studio teaching, teaching in the public schools, and employment in the field of music.

The Bachelor of Arts Major in Music General Degree is a liberal arts degree that is designed primarily for those wishing to pursue a well-rounded arts and sciences education.

The Bachelor of Arts Major in Music Performance Option is designed to prepare students for a career in music performance.

The Bachelor of Arts Major in Music Teaching Licensure Option is designed for students wishing to pursue music teaching careers in the schools.

The Bachelor of Arts Major in Music Business Track prepares students for employment in the music industry.

The Minor in Music provides students with enrichment in the field of music.


The Department of Music is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM).

Learning Outcomes

Students enrolled in all of the Music Programs will:

  • Demonstrate a comprehensive knowledge of music theory.  They will do so by analyzing selected works in which they will identify and relate fundamental musical elements such as phrase structure, organization of harmonic elements, and the construction of rhythmic and melodic materials.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the major historical musical styles by placing selected works, for which they will be provided scores and recordings, into appropriate time frames.  During this process they will document and comment on elements such as harmonic style, melodic and rhythmic structure, dynamic structure, the use of ornamentation, etc., as they relate to each of the historical style periods.
  • Perform an upper divisional jury at the end of their sophomore year (30 minutes for performance majors, 20 minutes for general music majors and teaching licensure majors).

Students in the Performance Option will also:

  • Display the technical and musical ability to perform significant musical literature at an advanced level.
  • Perform two one-hour adjudicated solo recitals at the end of their junior and senior years.  Prior to each recital, they must qualify by successfully performing a pre-recital jury for the music faculty.

Students in the Teaching Licensure Option will also:

  • Display the technical and musical ability to perform significant musical literature at an advanced level.
  • Perform an adjudicated 45 minute recital.  Prior to this recital, they must qualify by successfully performing a pre-recital jury for the music faculty.
  • Display an acquaintance with current and traditional methodology for teaching music.

Students in the Business Track will also:

  • Display a basic understanding of the theory, performance, and history of music.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of various aspects of business, including accounting, organization, marketing, and communication.

Advising Information

Students are encouraged to meet with their advisor each semester to confirm that their Plan of Study is accurate and complete.  If necessary, changes and updates should be made in order to ensure that program requirements can be completed in a timely manner.  In addition, advisors provide assistance in selecting elective courses which support the students’ interests, career plans, and Plan of Study.

Academic advising services for all freshmen Arts and Sciences majors are provided through the Advising Center on McMullen Hall first floor west.  Upon declaring a specific major, Arts and Science majors will be assigned to a faculty advisor in their department for upper-division advising.  Advising files for all upper-division students are maintained in the departmental office of the program in which the student is majoring.  Although advisors are available to assist students in designing their Plans of Study, students are ultimately responsible for meeting degree requirements.

NEXT: Bachelor of Arts Degree Major in Music

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