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Undergrad Program

Music Majors can choose a course track with an emphasis in Composition, Performance, Jazz, Technology and Literature. Non-majors can take courses if they satisfy prerequisites, and audition for ensembles.


The Department offers a Bachelor of Arts in Music, Music Humanities, and Interdisciplinary Computing in the Arts - Music (ICAM). Emphasis available within the Music major include Composition, Performance, Literature, Technology, and Jazz Studies. Minors are available in Music and ICAM.

Students who are not majors and have a limited musical background should take MUS 1A-B-C, which develops skills musicians use in the analysis and performance of music. Students interested in music appreciation can choose from the following courses, which introduce aspects of the rich heritage of music: MUS 4-20, 110-116, 126 and 127.  For Music Minors with prior musical background who wish to continue in upper-division theory courses, MUS 2A-B-C (in lieu of 1A-B-C) is essential.

Performance Ensembles are open for participation by all UC San Diego students. These include choral, orchestral, wind, and jazz ensembles.

Proficiency Exams and Petitions

Music 1, 2 and 2K Proficiency Exams

Proficiency exams are required of all students wishing to test out of the Music 1 series, Music 2 series and Music 2K series.

Music 1: The proficiency exam for Music 1 (Fundamentals of Music) is given individually for each course in the sequence. There is a MUS 1A exam, a 1B exam and a 1C exam.

MUS 1A, MUS 1B and 1C exams are administered at the first class meeting each quarter. Each exam must be completed within 40 minutes. This course sequence is intended for non-music majors.

Music 2: All students planning to test out of Music 2 (Basic Musicianship) must take a proficiency exam for each course. Each exam tests students on all three courses of the series. For example, the exam for Music 2 will test students on MUS 2A, 2B and 2C.

Exams will be held during Welcome Week or at the first class meeting. If you cannot make the Welcome Week date, attend the first day of class, whether you are registered or not. Students planning to take an exam at an alternate time during the academic year should email the instructor. This course sequence is required for music majors. However, new transfer students should enroll in MUS 101A, and also take the proficiency exam for the 2 series, to determine if tutoring would be needed in 101A.

FALL 2018 --  MUS 2 Exam -- Welcome Week

MONDAY, September 24, 2018, 9:00a-10:30a, CPMC 264

Music 2K: All students planning to test out of Music 2K (Basic Keyboard) must take a proficiency exam for each course. Each exam tests students on all three courses of that series. For example, the exam for Music 2K will test students on MUS 2AK, 2BK and 2CK.

Exams will be given at the first class meeting. To schedule an exam appointment at a time other than the first class meeting, students should email Professor Takae Ohnishi.

Please refer to the Schedule of Classes on WebReg for the first class meeting dates and times.

*** Please note ***
Students who test out of a course or sequence will not earn course credit/units. Testing out merely fulfills prerequisite requirements.


Students who would like to petition a course to the Music Department must submit the following:

  1. An Undergraduate Student Petition form
  2. Course syllabus

Petitions can be submitted to the Undergraduate Advisor in CPMC 195 during walk-in advising hours. The department will review the petition and will determine whether the course meets the department's requirements and will approve or deny the petition on that basis.


The Music Department does not allow students to petition ensembles. Music majors who are required to fulfill the 3 quarter ensemble requirement will be required to do so by participating in UCSD ensembles.


Academic Advising

Walk-in hours

Monday – Friday, 1:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. in Conrad Prebys Music Center 195

Melanie Ronten, M.A.

Undergraduate Advisor 


UC San Diego undergraduate students should contact advising through the Virtual Advising Center (VAC). No academic advising is conducted through email for current students. 

General Department Office Hours
8:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Resources for Undergraduates


Learning Objectives