The Department of Music offers three degree programs for music majors:

  1. Bachelor of Music in Applied Performance—a professional degree designed for students with strong performance skills who wish to become professional musicians, college and university teachers, or private studio teachers.
  2. Bachelor of Arts in Music—a degree designed for students who want to develop their musical skills within a liberal arts program with enough flexibility to pursue additional studies in other fields of interest, such as biblical studies, business, psychology, theatre arts, etc.
  3. Bachelor of Music Education—a professional degree designed for students who wish to become fully qualified elementary or secondary school music teachers. Students may elect certification in instrumental K-12 or vocal K-12. Bethel’s music education degree fulfills the Minnesota certification requirements.

Students majoring in fields outside of music may choose elective courses in music, take private lessons, and participate in performance organizations.

Transfer students must demonstrate acceptable proficiency levels in music theory, music history, and applied music before admittance to the major program. Credits used toward the major are evaluated on an individual basis by the department.

Music Proficiencies

  • Applied Proficiencies. All students majoring in music must meet competency performance standards as specified by the department.  The levels of proficiency are determined by the student's degree program.  Applied performance majors must fulfill Level IV; sacred music majors must fulfill Level III; music education majors must fulfill Level III; B.A. majors must fulfill Level III.  Consult the Department of Music for the repertoire required for each level in voice, keyboard, and all instruments.
  • Piano Proficiency. Expectations and standards are detailed in the Department of Music Student Handbook.
  • Guitar Proficiency. Expectations and Standards are detailed in the Department of Music Student Handbook.

Additional Requirements

  • Recital and Concert Attendance. Music majors are required to attend 32 on-campus concerts/recitals/Music Hours or approved professional off-campus concerts during each academic year.  Expectations are detailed in the Department of Music Student Handbook.  Music minors are required to attend 64 concerts over a four-year period.  Expectations are detailed in the Department of Music Student Handbook.  Concerts that meet this requirement include faculty recitals, student recitals, and approved professional off-campus concerts.
  • Music Juries. Music majors and minors taking private lessons must perform on their applied instruments before the music faculty at music juries.  The music jury is waived during the semester in which a recital is given or the sophomore interview is taken.  A music minor is required to perform before a music jury a minimum of four semesters.  The music jury can constitute the 12th lesson for music majors and minors.

Minor in Music

Music Courses

MUS 101 • Music Fundamentals 1 Credit.

Fundamentals of music theory notation: clefs; time signatures; major and minor key signatures; major and all three forms of minor scales; intervals and triads, including qualities and inversions; Roman numeral analysis with figured bass; overtone series.
Corequisites: Requires concurrent registration with MUL 143A or consent of instructor. Offered: Fall.

MUS 103 • Introduction to Music Literature 2 Credits.

Development of listening skills and musical vocabulary pertinent to the study of Western music history through a chronological survey of major historical style periods and representative literature.
Corequisites: Requires concurrent registration with MUS 101 and MUL 143A, or consent of instructor. Offered: Fall.

MUS 104 • Music Theory I 3 Credits.

A continuation of MUS 101 concepts and materials: voice-leading and part-writing of triads and seventh chords, and modulations in diatonic chorale style. Beginning development of ear-training and sight-singing, music technology, computer applications, and continuation of functional keyboard skills.
Prerequisites: MUS 101; MUS 103. Offered: Spring

MUS 195 • Music Hour 0 Credit.

A semi-monthly informal recital for the purpose of student performance or discussion of topics of significance to musicians. Music majors and minors are required to perform on their applied instruments in a minimum of one Music Hour recital per semester. First-semester freshmen perform at the discretion of the private instructor. Music majors must register each semester in residence in order to complete the Recital and Concert Attendance requirements for graduation.
Prerequisites: Music major or minor. Grade exceptions: Graded on an S/U basis. Offered: Fall, Spring.

MUS 202 • Music Theory II 3 Credits.

A continuation of MUS 104 concepts and materials: advanced voice-leading and part-writing skills, chromaticism/non-diatonicism, introduction to jazz and pop theory. Continued development of ear-training, sight-singing, functional keyboard skills, music technology, and computer applications.
Prerequisites: MUS 104. Offered: Fall

MUS 203 • Music Theory III 3 Credits.

Practice in 16th century counterpoint; analysis of forms from 18th century counterpoint through classical forms; continuation of ear-training, sight-singing, and functional keyboard skills.
Prerequisites: MUS 202 or consent of instructor. Offered: Spring

MUS 210 • Collaborative Keyboard Skills 2 Credits.

A series of class lessons for the advancing piano student. Topics include sight-reading, ensemble playing, transposition, open score reading, and accompanying.
Prerequisites: MUS 104 or consent of instructor. Offered: Spring 2020

MUS 230 • Music and Worship in the 21st Century 3 Credits.

The role of music within the context of Christian corporate worship. Current practice in church music is analyzed from a theological and historical perspective with the goal of forming musical practice that matches biblical function.
Offered: Spring.

MUS 262A • How To Write A Song 3 Credits.

Explore song history, analysis, and structure in order to compose and record original piece.
Offered: Occasionally. Special Notes: Does not require formal music background.

MUS 301 • Music Theory IV 3 Credits.

Advanced analysis and composition in all styles with a focus on 20th century music.
Prerequisites: MUS 203. Offered: Spring, odd # years

MUS 305G • Music in World Cultures 3 Credits.

Introductory study of cultural traditions, belief systems, and practices of world cultures through the study and analysis of the music of ethnic groups. Specific cultures included may vary each year.
Prerequisites: [GES 130; GES 160; Contemporary Western Life and Thought (L) course; World Cultures (U) course] or [GES 244; World Cultures (U) course]. Offered: Spring, even # years

MUS 312 • Music History and Literature I 3 Credits.

Chronological survey of Western musical art from the Greek civilization through the Baroque period with detailed examination of representative works. Required listening, examinations, and written projects.
Prerequisites: MUS 103; MUS 104. Offered: Fall

MUS 313 • Music History and Literature II 3 Credits.

A continuation of MUS 312, from 1750 to the present.
Prerequisites: MUS 312. Offered: Spring

MUS 315 • Piano Literature 3 Credits.

A survey of the literature for the solo piano, spanning 400 years from the Baroque through the Modern Era.
Prerequisites: Keyboard major or minor, or instructor’s permission. Offered: Spring 2019

MUS 322 • Instrumental Literature and Conducting 3 Credits.

Principles of conducting as applied to orchestral and band literature. Musical style and the responsibility of the conductor to the score. Instrumental music of the Classic, Romantic, and 20th century periods will be explored.
Prerequisites: MUS 324. Offered: Spring

MUS 323 • Instrumentation 2 Credits.

Introduction of all major instruments with emphasis on transpositions, ranges, and idiomatic writing. Arranging of music for large and small combinations of woodwind, brass, string, and percussion instruments.
Prerequisites: MUS 202; MUS 312. Offered: Spring

MUS 324 • Choral Literature and Conducting 3 Credits.

Development of conducting techniques with the application of stylistic principles to the styles of the Renaissance, Baroque, Classic, Romantic, and 20th century periods.
Prerequisites: MUS 203; MUS 313 or consent of instructor. Offered: Fall

MUS 326 • Vocal Literature 3 Credits.

Development of conducting techniques with the application of stylistic principles to the styles of the Renaissance, Baroque, Classic, Romantic, and 20th century periods.
Prerequisites: MUS 203, MUS 313.

MUS 357 • Piano Pedagogy 2 Credits.

Methods of teaching piano. Overview of teaching materials including method books, literature collections and anthologies, and supplementary materials.
Prerequisites: Major or minor in music. Offered: Spring.

MUS 358 • Brass Methods 2 Credits.

Methods of teaching brass instruments (trumpet, horn, trombone, tuba). Performance techniques and materials as well as practical experience on each of the representative instruments.
Prerequisites: Major or minor in music. Offered: Fall, even # years

MUS 359 • Percussion Methods 2 Credits.

Methods of teaching percussion (snare drum, keyboard/mallets, timpani, concert accessories/auxiliary, drum set). Performance techniques and materials as well as practical experience on most of the represented instruments.
Prerequisites: Major or minor in music. Offered: Spring, odd # years

MUS 360 • String Methods 2 Credits.

Methods of teaching stringed instruments (violin, viola, cello, bass). Performance techniques and materials as well as practical experience on each of the representative instruments.
Prerequisites: Major or minor in music. Offered: Spring, even # years

MUS 362 • Woodwind Methods 2 Credits.

Methods of teaching woodwind instruments (flute, clarinet, oboe, saxophone, bassoon). Performance techniques and materials as well as practical experience on each of the representative instruments.
Prerequisites: Major or minor in music. Offered: Fall, odd # years

MUS 363 • Vocal Pedagogy 2 Credits.

Methods of teaching the vocal mechanism and its functions. Performance techniques and materials as well as practical experience.
Prerequisites: Four semesters of voice lessons. Offered: Spring, odd # years

MUS 366 • Italian and English Lyric Diction 1 Credit.

Studies in pronunciation of Italian and English songs through the use of the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA). Verbal, written, and sung realization of this work practiced on assigned repertoire.
Prerequisites: One year private voice study or equivalent. Offered: Fall

MUS 367 • French Lyric Diction 1 Credit.

Studies in pronunciation of French diction through use of the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA). Verbal, written, and sung realizations of this work practiced on assigned repertoire.
Prerequisites: MUS 366. Offered: Spring, odd # years

MUS 368 • German Lyric Diction 1 Credit.

Studies in pronunciation of German diction through the use of the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA). Verbal, written, and sung realization of this work practiced on assigned repertoire.
Prerequisites: MUS 366. Offered: Spring, even # years

MUS 395 • Junior Recital 0 Credit.

A culminating performance experience required for the bachelor of music applied performance major. A one half-hour recital of Level III repertoire is presented.
Prerequisites: Pre-recital hearing. Offered: Fall, spring

MUS 495 • Half Senior Recital 0 Credit.

A culminating performance experience required for the bachelor of arts in sacred music and bachelor of music education majors. A one half-hour recital of Level III repertoire is presented.
Prerequisites: Pre-recital hearing. Offered: Fall, spring

MUS 496 • Full Senior Recital 0 Credit.

A culminating performance experience required for the bachelor of music applied performance major. A one-hour recital of Level IV repertoire is presented.
Prerequisites: Pre-recital hearing. Offered: Fall, spring

Music Ensembles

MUE101A-MUE161A. Ensembles. O-1 Credit.

Bethel offers a large selection of vocal and instrumental ensembles. All ensembles are open by audition to students who are members of a performance organization (MUP101A-MUP163A) or who have special permission from the conductor. Though a student may participate in more than one ensemble (MUE101a-MUE163A) each semester, only one may be taken for credit. No more than two ensembles or performance organizations may be taken for credit in any semester. During the college career no more than 16 credits total for ensembles and performance organizations may be taken for credit. Not all music ensembles require auditions. Prerequisite: Participation in a major performance organization (MUP101A through MUP163A). 

MUE 100A • Bethel Chapel Choir 1 Credit.

A non-auditioned choir that performs regularly in Chapel and other Departments of Music and Campus Ministries events. Grading Exceptions: S/U (limited). TR; Fall, Spring.

MUE 101A • Chamber Choir 1 Credit.

The Chamber Choir rehearses and performs music specifically designed for small ensemble part-singing. In the first semester the ensemble explores traditional pre-20th century literature including French chansons and European madrigal literature. In the second semester emphasis shifts to the 20th century, with exploration of contemporary literature and vocal jazz.
Prerequisites: Participation in Bethel Choir, Bethel Women’s Chorale, or Bethel Male Chorus. Offered: Fall, spring

MUE 131A • Handbell Ensemble 1 Credit.

The Handbell Ensemble performs a wide range of repertoire from the finest original compositions and arrangements available for handbells. The ensemble performs in the Festival of Christmas, presents a spring concert, and performs in area churches. One rehearsal each week.
Offered: Fall, spring.Special Notes: Open by audition to students from all academic disciplines.

MUE 141A • Chamber Ensemble 1 Credit.

An opportunity to develop self-expression through the discovery and performance of instrumental chamber music. This class meets once a week for 1.5 hours of coaching and requires 1.5 hours of additional preparation.
Offered: Occasionally. Special Notes: Ensembles are arranged by individual audition, and practicing is required.

MUE 151A • Jazz Orchestra 1 Credit.

This ensemble explores the unique American art form of jazz, performing various styles from traditional big band to fusion. Concerts include the spring Jazz in the Great Hall. One rehearsal each week.
Prerequisites: Participation in Wind Symphony or approval of director of instrumental activities. Offered: Fall, spring. Special Notes: Open by audition.

MUE 161A • Chamber Winds 1 Credit.

Small instrumental groups emphasize performance and training in ensemble repertoire for small wind or percussion ensembles including but not limited to: brass quintet, woodwind quintet, percussion ensemble, or any other instrumental family ensembles. One rehearsal each week.
Prerequisites: Participation in Wind Symphony or approval of director of instrumental activities. Offered: Fall, spring. Special Notes: Open by audition.

Music Lessons

MUL101A through MUL439. Private Lessons. O-2 Credits.

Private lessons are offered in voice, piano, pipe organ, violin, viola, cello, double bass, flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, saxophone, English horn, horn, trumpet, euphonium, tuba, harp, percussion, and guitar. Lessons may be taken for one-half hour, three-quarter hour, or one hour per week with or without credit. Practice requirement expectations and standards are detailed in the Music Department Student Handbook. Students receive 12 lessons per semester if they register before or during the first week of the semester. To receive credit, a student must have a minimum of 10 lessons. Students registering late are not allowed to make up the lessons they missed. Lessons cannot begin or be registered for after the third week of the semester. All music majors are required to register for a three-quarter hour lesson. Students preparing for a recital are encouraged to register for a one-hour lesson. Voice lessons require regularly scheduled studio voice lab. 

MUL 140A • Beginning Piano 1 Credit.

A series of class lessons recommended for students who have not had formal piano study. Using the keyboard laboratory, students learn to read music and harmonize simple folk melodies at the piano as well as acquire some basic theory.
Offered: Fall, spring.

MUL 141A • Beginning Voice 1 Credit.

A series of class lessons, lectures, and student performances to give the beginning vocalist a basic foundation in singing. Incorporates folk, musical theatre, and classic literature.
Offered: Fall, spring.

MUL 142A • Beginning Guitar 1 Credit.

A series of lessons designed to give the beginning guitarist a foundation in acoustic (nonelectric) guitar, including basic tuning techniques, chords in seven keys, reading of notes on the first five frets, strumming rhythms, fingerpicking, and song leading.
Offered: Fall, spring. Special Notes: Music education majors may use successful completion of this course to satisfy the guitar proficiency requirement.

MUL 143A • Introduction to Keyboard Theory 1 Credit.

A series of class lessons for music majors and minors who have little or no background in keyboard theory skills.
Corequisites: Must be taken concurrently with MUS 101. Grade exceptions: Graded on an S/U basis. Offered: Fall. Special Notes: Students with more advanced keyboard skills may attempt to test out after registration.

MUL 144A • Group Voice 1 Credit.

A series of lessons given for a group of three to four beginning students. Lessons last one hour and cover basic techniques of singing and performance of folk, musical theatre, or classical literature. Some one-on-one instruction may occur as the class advances.
Prerequisites: MUL 141A or membership in Women’s Chorale or Male Chorus. Offered: Fall, spring

MUL 242A • Intermediate Guitar 1 Credit.

A series of lessons designed to advance the student beyond the foundational guitar techniques introduced in MUL 142A, including barred chords, chord alteration, advanced strumming and fingerpicking, performance techniques, guitar music theory, and arranging.
Prerequisites: MUL 142A or consent of instructor. Offered: Spring

MUL 300 • Applied Composition 2 Credits.

Private (or small group) study in composition beginning with single instruments followed by chamber groups and large ensembles. Computer notation and MIDI sequencing also included. Performance of original works encouraged when appropriate or required.
Prerequisites: MUS 202 or consent of instructor. The private lesson fee applies to this course. Offered: Fall, Spring

Music Performance Organizations

MUP101A through MUP163A. Performance Organizations. 0-1 Credit.

Students with a major in music are required to be in a performance organization for four years. Students with a minor in music are required to be in a performance organization for a minimum of two years. Credit for transfer students is evaluated on a individual basis. For non-majors, four credits may be applied toward the graduation requirement of 122 credits. 

MUP 101A • Bethel Women's Choir 1 Credit.

The Bethel Women’s Chorale is open by audition to female students from all academic disciplines. The chorale rehearses four times each week and performs and tours throughout the United States.
Offered: Fall, spring.

MUP 111A • Bethel Choir 1 Credit.

The Bethel Choir is open by audition and presents concerts throughout the United States or Europe during its annual concert tours. The choir rehearses four days each week.
Offered: Fall, spring.

MUP 121A • Bethel Men's Choir 1 Credit.

An ensemble of men rehearsing, studying, and learning a wide variety of music literature composed specifically for male voices. Approaches all aspects of musical and vocal learning: singing properly, singing proper notation, reading music, singing in tune, and singing expressively.
Prerequisites: Audition and the ability to sing at least at entry level. Offered: Fall, spring

MUP 150A • Bethel Philharmonic Orchestra 1 Credit.

A fully symphonic orchestra open, by audition, to all members of the Bethel community, including students, faculty, staff, alumni and the larger community as openings allow. Rehearses one night a week and gives one concert a semester.
Offered: Fall, Spring.

MUP 153A • Bethel Chamber Orchestra 1 Credit.

A performance ensemble for music majors, minors, and other serious players. Performs repertoire from the Baroque to the Modern Era, tours annually, gives concerts, and participates in Festival of Christmas and Classics in the Great Hall. Plays in chapel and collaborates with the Opera Workshop and other musical theater events.
Offered: Fall, spring.

MUP 163A • Wind Symphony 1 Credit.

The Wind Symphony is an active performance group presenting concerts locally as well as throughout the United States or Europe. The Wind Symphony is open by audition to woodwind, brass, and percussion players from all academic disciplines of the university.
Offered: Fall, spring.