Music

Programs offered
  • Music (major and minor)
  • Music Education (major)
  • Music Therapy (major)

When you choose an academic major or minor in the Music Department, you will find the Music program:

  • Provides opportunities for all students to study music as an essential part of a liberal arts education in a comprehensive university.
  • Provides you with the opportunity to develop basic musicianship and performance skills appropriate to the various emphases in the degree.
  • Recognizes the interrelationship between music and the other creative arts.

Additionally, SPU is an accredited institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Music, the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education, and the American Music Therapy Association.

Find out more about this program’s mission, vision, and learning outcomes.

Music (BA)

The BA in music trains you to use your gift in a variety of ways, including as a performer, composer, studio technician, or private music instructor. This degree also prepares you for advanced study in performance, theory, and literature.

  • A minimum 80–87 credits are required for this major, including 23 upper-division credits.
  • In this program, you will learn to recognize the interrelationship between music and the other creative arts. 
  • Piano proficiency is required for graduation for all Music majors.
  • If you are enrolled in “Music Theory I” through “Music Theory VI” courses and are identified as needing remedial keyboard skills, you may be required to enroll in MUS 1254, 1255, or 2200 until you can pass the Keyboard Proficiency Exam. 
  • You can choose from four emphases in the BA in Music degree — Composition, General, Performance, or Technology.
  • A minimum 39 credits are required for this minor, including 15 upper-division credits.
  • When you minor in Music or Worship Arts, you will be prepared to serve in church music ministries. 

Music Education (BA)

VIEW DEGREE REQUIREMENTS

The BA in Music Education includes both a rigorous music program and the education coursework and internship for Washington P-12 music teaching certification.

  • A minimum 128 credits are required, including 23 upper-division credits.
  • You will need to fulfill the requirements for the Music degree, including ensemble experiences. 
  • Piano and guitar proficiency are required.
  • You will present a junior recital on your major instrument. 
  • You can choose course options that lead to general, instrumental or vocal/choral endorsements.
  • Service learning, September experience, lab experiences, and internships provide comprehensive experiences in local schools supervised by experienced music educators.

Music Therapy (BA)

The SPU Music Therapy Program’s rigorous, multidisciplinary curriculum is designed to prepare you for the six-month clinical internship, and, ultimately, pass the national examination to earn your Board Certified Music Therapist (MT-BC) designation. 

  • A minimum 114 credits is required for this major, including 29 upper-division credits.
  • Pass proficiency exams on piano, guitar, and voice.
  • Fulfill the requirements for the Music degree, including a junior recital on your major instrument.
  • Your classes will be in core music therapy, psychology, special education, and biology/physical education, as well as the required SPU courses. 
  • You will also have the opportunity for practicum experiences within diverse health care and educational institutions in the Seattle area.
  • You will have the close supervision by board-certified music therapists in an educational climate.
  • You will fulfill 180 hours of practicum experience during your undergraduate training.

Music Minor

VIEW DEGREE REQUIREMENTS

  • This minor requires a minimum 39–40 credits, including 15 upper-division credits.
  • The minors include a Music minor and a Music and Worship Arts minor.
  • Depending on the minor chosen, courses include Core requirements, Theological and Historical Foundations, contemporary performance practice, and ensemble participation.

Apply to the major or minor

  • If you are an incoming freshman, you may apply to a Music major after you have completed your freshman year at SPU.
  • If you are a transfer student, you may apply to a Music major after one academic quarter.
  • You must have a minimum 3.0 GPA for admission to the Music major, Music Therapy major, or Music minor. Once admitted, you are required to maintain a minimum 2.8 GPA.
  • Apply for a major or minor using the online Major or Minor Application form.
  • You must complete the major or minor requirements in effect when you are admitted to the major or minor. Admission to this program is competitive. 

Future teachers

Elementary teacher certification

If you plan to obtain elementary Residency Teacher Certification and are interested in teaching music, you must major in the Integrated Studies major with a concentration in the arts.

  • This concentration includes courses in art, music, and theatre.
  • The faculty advisor for the Arts concentration, Dr. Andrew Ryder (aryder@spu.edu).

Secondary teacher certification

If you plan to seek secondary Teacher Certification, you should pursue the Music Education major or Music Therapy: Emphasis in Special Education major.

SPU Concert Choir in rehearsal

Music Department

Visit the Music Department to see how a degree in Music or Music Therapy can help you achieve your goals to make a difference in the world.

Time Schedule: Music

Course planning

Suggested course sequences help you complete your degree in a timely manner.

SPU ensemble in rehearsal

Ensemble opportunities

You have an opportunity to choose from many SPU music ensembles. Find ensembles, descriptions, and requirements in the course listings in the 2000/4000 levels. All ensemble courses carry regular SPU credit. Music ensembles are open to music majors and non-majors by audition.

SPU student playing piano

Music accreditation