Program Overview

The Bachelor of Music through West Chester University’s Wells School of Music offers students opportunities through numerous tracks including composition, theory, history, music therapy, and elective studies in an outside field. Our students receive hands-on opportunities both in the classroom and in practice, and develop their skills through a personalized education experience.

 

Tracks

Composition

The Bachelor of Music with a concentration in Composition will assist you in developing individual creative skills. You will be encouraged to compose music that is personal, expressive, and stylistically diverse. Regular concerts provide numerous opportunities for you to hear your work performed and recorded. These performances are supported through the new music ensembles we welcome to campus each year. Your education will culminate in your very own recital of original works presented in your fourth year.

Theory

The Bachelor of Music with a concentration in Theory provides intensive training in the analysis of popular music, jazz, and Western art music. You will develop your analytic skills through the in-depth study of music theory, musicianship, counterpoint, music analysis techniques, performance, and conducting. In addition, you will study the psychology of music and music theory pedagogy in seminar style classes.   

History

The Bachelor of Music with a concentration in History will provide you with intensive training in the materials and methods of music history. Your education will encompass the literature, genres, forms, styles, and technical vocabulary of Western art music, popular music (including folk, rock, and jazz), and various world music styles. In addition, you will receive training in the advanced research tools of music history and use this knowledge to develop your senior thesis, a piece that shows your unique interests as a music historian. The curriculum, focused on the development of musical style, will prepare you to think critically about the evolution of music over time.

Elective Studies

The Bachelor of Music in Elective Studies with an Outside Field allows you to study both general music and a secondary interest in virtually any academic program offered on campus. You will develop your musical skills through courses in music theory, music history, musicianship, and performance. Popular outside fields include business, communications, psychology, political science, and information technology.

Music Therapy

The Bachelor of Music with a concentration in Music Therapy prepares students to become candidates for music therapy board certification. Students perform around 1,200 clinical training and internship hours over the course of their studies. Classes bring together music theory, music history, music performance, psychology, and anatomy to allow students to serve a wide range of clients in a variety of clinical settings using percussion, piano, voice, and guitar.

 

Program Highlights

Composition

  • Personalized approach to student artistry development through weekly composition lessons
  • Sessions where student compositions are performed and recorded by professional artists or university ensembles
  • Special topic seminars for all composition students, featuring guest artist presentations
  • Opportunity for participation in the NOW music society, a student-run organization promoting performance, creation, and dissemination of new music by student composers
  • Access to the Center for Music Technology complete with recording equipment and music publishing and analysis software

Theory

  • Unique curriculum with a perceptual and psychological approach to music theory
  • Holistic learning experience through education in musicianship, counterpoint, performance, conducting, and music theory pedagogy
  • Training in the analysis of popular music, jazz, and western art music
  • Participation in the Wilkinson Lecture Series, where distinguished musicologists, historians, and music theorists present to the student body
  • Faculty advised research opportunities

History

  • A comprehensive curriculum complemented by humanistic and cultural perspectives
  • Training in materials and methods of all music genres, including pop/rock, jazz, opera, and world music
  • Experience in Medieval through Baroque style and performance practice study for voices, viola da gamba, lute, recorder, and other instruments in the Collegium Musicum Ensemble
  • Prominent lectures in historical musicology and ethnomusicology
  • Faculty advised research opportunities

Elective Studies 

  • A flexible curriculum encompassing general music courses and courses with a selected outside field
  • Ability to study another area of interest including, but not limited to, business, psychology, and communications
  • Dedicated faculty advising throughout degree sequence

Music Therapy

  • Coursework teaches functional piano, guitar, and voice as well as human body awareness through the study of psychology and anatomy and physiology
  • Early opportunities for hands on experience with a Board Certified Music Therapist  (MT-BC)
  • Internship opportunities including university affiliated regional internships and American Music Therapy Association National Roster internships
  • Ability to work with a variety of clinical populations through the clinical observation, pre-internship, and internship experiences
  • Research instruction where students become familiar with current music therapy research and how to apply it to their own practice and education
  • Opportunity for research apprenticeships and research grants under faculty supervision
  • Personalized faculty advisement with an experienced interdisciplinary clinician and researcher
  • Available complementary minors such as psychology and nutrition

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