Jan 22, 2021  
2018-2019 Undergraduate Catalog 
2018-2019 Undergraduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]


The mission of the Music Department of Black Hills State University is to provide students with opportunities for aesthetic development in the areas of musical perception, knowledge, and performance. It is the philosophy of this music department that music is a shared human experience, and a cooperative educational environment is essential to the growth of individual musical sensitivity. Thus, music students and faculty seek to enhance their musical understanding together, through group performances and learning experiences, as well as through the individual study necessary for the refinement of personal artistry and creative expression.

Music Department Objectives are to help all students:


  Acquire a functional knowledge of the language and grammar of music
  - Expand knowledge of traditional and contemporary musical styles through listening experiences and performance activities
  - Develop the ability to hear and identify the elements of music-rhythmic, melodic, harmonic, and formal.
  - Develop the following competencies in at least one major area of musical concentration (instrument or voice); technical skills adequate to meet the needs of artistic self-expression; the ability to read at sight; participation in large and small ensemble performance; solo performance of a wide variety of musical styles; improvisational and compositional skills of a type and level appropriate to the area of concentration
  - Acquire a level of functional keyboard skills appropriate to the area of concentration
  - Acquire conducting and rehearsal skills adequate to demonstrate the understanding of musical interpretation in the context of group performance
  - Develop the ability to place compositions in historical and stylistic perspective
  - Develop maturity in musical discrimination, evaluation, and criticism
  - Develop an understanding of the role of music education in our society.

Admission to the Music Major Programs - It is recommended that students who choose to major in music declare that decision to their advisor their freshman year. Students considering a music major, should have a music faculty member as an advisor. Students who wish to pursue a major in music must pass a music proficiency audition at the end of their sophomore year, and/or before entering 300 level applied lessons.

Participation in Performance Groups - All music majors and minors are required to participate in at least one major ensemble. Note: only six semester hours of performance groups will be counted toward graduation and included in the grade point average.

Private Lessons - All students who take applied voice or instrumental lessons (MUAP numbers 200 and above) are required to take a performance exam at the end of the semester. Students who wish to take MUAP classes at the 300 level or above must pass a performance proficiency exam prior to registering for the class. Music majors are required to register for two semester hours for each 300-400 level lesson in their major instrument or voice.

Concert and Recital Attendance - All music majors and minors are expected to attend all on-campus recitals & concerts. Attendance will be taken at each recital and concert.

Piano Proficiency Exam - All music majors are required to pass a music proficiency exam prior to student teaching (or graduation for nonteaching majors). Entering students who do not have a background in piano must enroll in a piano class each semester until they are able to complete the proficiency requirements.

Senior Recital - All music majors are expected to declare a principal instrument or voice for study by the second semester of their freshman year. Each student will be expected to take an applied music course in the principal area every semester. All majors are required to present a recital during their senior year. The entire music faculty must approve the recital at least one month before the recital is presented in public. Each student will be required to have a 40-45 minute program with representative music from at least three style periods, including 20th century. The program must include at least one chamber music selection (an ensemble with 3 or more performers).  Vocal majors should sing 12-14 memorized songs or arias, and demonstrate an ability to sing in three languages. Instrumental majors should perform at least one sonata or concerto, at a level of skill deemed appropriate by the private teacher. (In rare cases, a substitute project may replace the senior recital if it is approved by a majority of the Music faculty.)