Discover all the performance opportunities you've dreamed about, and carve your artistic niche. Discover all the performance opportunities you've dreamed about, and carve your artistic niche. Discover all the performance opportunities you've dreamed about, and carve your artistic niche. Discover all the performance opportunities you've dreamed about, and carve your artistic niche. Discover all the performance opportunities you've dreamed about, and carve your artistic niche.

Department of Music

Music

Questions?

Undergraduate Admissions

(630) 637-5800

admissions@noctrl.edu

Why pursue a music degree at North Central College?

At North Central you’ll find all the performance opportunities you’ve dreamed about. Choose from more than 20 instrumental and vocal groups, including large and small ensembles, jazz combos, musical theatre and opera workshops. You’ll perform in a grand concert hall and in more intimate settings. Working closely with professionally active faculty, you’ll receive plenty of one-on-one attention in class and out. In other words, you’ll receive all the tools and opportunities you need to carve your own performance niche.

You can also:

  • Shape your classes, lessons and performances around your particular areas of interest.
  • Enroll in a variety of music and music-related courses, ranging from conducting to composition to music theory, from a wide spectrum of choral and instrumental faculty.
  • Audition for ensemble scholarships.

More department information.

Music, Liberal Arts Track, B.A.

The liberal arts track in Music is for the student who wishes to major in music but does not want to pursue a teaching career or a performance career in jazz. Students in the liberal arts track take the same academic core of theory/aural skills, music literature/history and private study/ensembles as other music majors, but add to their degree program in other ways which meet their unique career goals and interests.

An individual program of study can be designed in consultation with the department chair.

For additional programs and courses in this department, see Music.

Major Requirements

  • MUS 101 - Music Theory I

    MUS 101 - Music Theory I

    3.00 credit hours

    Study of basic notation rules, triads in root position, triads in first and second inversions voice leading rules, phrase structure, cadences, harmonic progressions and rudimentary forms.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 102 - Music Theory II

    MUS 102 - Music Theory II

    3.00 credit hours

    A study of non-harmonic tones, dominant seventh chords, altered non-harmonic tones and seventh chords. This course includes the study of basic harmonization techniques using triads and seventh chords as well as the study and analysis of standard music literature.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 101.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 108 - Aural Skills I

    MUS 108 - Aural Skills I

    1.00 credit hours

    Introduction to basic concepts of musicianship including rhythm performance and recognition, sight singing and ear training.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 109 - Aural Skills II

    MUS 109 - Aural Skills II

    1.00 credit hours

    Continued basic work with sight singing, ear training, triad recognition and melodic and rhythmic dictation.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 201 - Music Theory III

    MUS 201 - Music Theory III

    3.00 credit hours

    Study of altered dominant chords, modulation to closely related keys, borrowed chords and diminished seventh chords as they apply to the form and analysis of standard music literature.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 101 and MUS 102.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 202 - Music Theory IV

    MUS 202 - Music Theory IV

    3.00 credit hours

    A study of extended chords, modulations to foreign keys, augmented sixth chords, Neapolitan sixth chords and the tone row. A study of harmonization and modulations are applied to the analysis and form of standard music literature.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 101, MUS 102 and MUS 201.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 208 - Aural Skills III

    MUS 208 - Aural Skills III

    1.00 credit hours

    Intermediate work with sight singing, ear training, melodic and rhythmic dictation, seventh chords and harmonic dictation.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 209 - Aural Skills IV

    MUS 209 - Aural Skills IV

    1.00 credit hours

    Continued intermediate work with sight singing, ear training, triad recognition, melodic and rhythmic dictation, seventh chords and harmonic dictation. Introduction of modes, intervals beyond the octave and hearing of forms.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 258 - Introduction to Musical Styles and Ideas

    MUS 258 - Introduction to Musical Styles and Ideas

    3.00 credit hours

    Introduces the study of music in the extended common practice including bibliography, listening, score reading, music terminology, critical reading and writing skills. The course surveys selected music genres (polyphonic choral, chamber and symphonic music, opera) and discusses the development of musical style from medieval through contemporary practice.

    Core

    Humanities.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 301 - Music History I

    MUS 301 - Music History I

    2.00 credit hours

    The study of Western music from ancient times through the Renaissance period.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 258 and Junior standing; or instructor consent.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 302 - Music History II

    MUS 302 - Music History II

    2.00 credit hours

    The study of Western music of the Baroque and Classical periods.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 301 or instructor consent.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 303 - Music History III

    MUS 303 - Music History III

    2.00 credit hours

    The study of Western music from the Romantic period to the present day.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 302 or instructor consent.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 342 - Arranging and Orchestration

    MUS 342 - Arranging and Orchestration

    3.00 credit hours

    Students study the technical and historic aspects of orchestration and arranging for both vocal and instrumental ensembles.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 370 and MUS 343.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 343 - Aural Skills V: Performance and Analysis Laboratory

    MUS 343 - Aural Skills V: Performance and Analysis Laboratory

    1.00 credit hours

    Advanced level work with sight singing and ear training including modal, atonal and contemporary idioms. Special projects involving transcriptions and dictation from students' areas of interest.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 344 - Elements of Conducting

    MUS 344 - Elements of Conducting

    2.00 credit hours

    Basic conducting technique, including posture, position of the arms and hands, simple patterns, cueing and releases. Introduction to score preparation and rehearsal technique.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 370 and MUS 343; or instructor consent.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 370 - Performance and Analysis

    MUS 370 - Performance and Analysis

    3.00 credit hours

    Advanced analytical techniques for tonal and post-tonal music. Topics include large-scale score analysis, harmonic analysis, reductive analysis and rhythmic analysis. Other topics include issues in cognition and perception and computer-assisted analysis.

    Prerequisite(s)


    Prerequiste: MUS 202 and MUS 209.

    Schedule Of Classes

    • One 300- or 400-level non-performance Music course (3.0 cr.)
    • Four additional credit hours of Music electives
    • Participation in an approved performing ensemble each term in the program
    • Private studio lessons on primary instrument/voice must be taken for minimal credit, .5 for 12 terms, totaling six credit hours
    • Completion of 12 terms of Concert/Recital Attendance
    • Enrollment in MUS 211 - Piano Lessons is required until the Piano Proficiency Examination is completed
    • Successful completion of the Piano Proficiency Examination
    • Completion of a 30 minute Junior Instrumental or Vocal Recital
    • Completion of a 60 minute Senior Instrumental or Vocal Recital*

Note:

*Under special circumstances a Senior Project (such as a composition recital or conducting/lecture recital) may substitute for the Senior Recital.  Department Chair permission is required for a Senior Project; a proposal, as per Department of Music Guidebook guidelines, is required at least two terms prior to the proposed project performance/due date.

Music, Performance Track, B.A.

The Music Performance major chooses from the following emphases: vocal, instrumental, piano or composition. The Music Performance track is designed for students who wish to pursue careers as performers, private studio teachers or composers, and who plan to pursue graduate school in these or related areas, such as music therapy. Music Performance majors are required to take a rigorous core of music theory, history and techniques/pedagogy courses, as well as private study on their primary instrument, musical ensemble study and all liberal arts and general education courses required of all students at North Central College. Entrance into the Music Performance track is determined by audition with the Music Department.

For additional programs and courses in this department, see Music.

Major Requirements

  • MUS 101 - Music Theory I

    MUS 101 - Music Theory I

    3.00 credit hours

    Study of basic notation rules, triads in root position, triads in first and second inversions voice leading rules, phrase structure, cadences, harmonic progressions and rudimentary forms.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 102 - Music Theory II

    MUS 102 - Music Theory II

    3.00 credit hours

    A study of non-harmonic tones, dominant seventh chords, altered non-harmonic tones and seventh chords. This course includes the study of basic harmonization techniques using triads and seventh chords as well as the study and analysis of standard music literature.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 101.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 108 - Aural Skills I

    MUS 108 - Aural Skills I

    1.00 credit hours

    Introduction to basic concepts of musicianship including rhythm performance and recognition, sight singing and ear training.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 109 - Aural Skills II

    MUS 109 - Aural Skills II

    1.00 credit hours

    Continued basic work with sight singing, ear training, triad recognition and melodic and rhythmic dictation.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 201 - Music Theory III

    MUS 201 - Music Theory III

    3.00 credit hours

    Study of altered dominant chords, modulation to closely related keys, borrowed chords and diminished seventh chords as they apply to the form and analysis of standard music literature.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 101 and MUS 102.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 202 - Music Theory IV

    MUS 202 - Music Theory IV

    3.00 credit hours

    A study of extended chords, modulations to foreign keys, augmented sixth chords, Neapolitan sixth chords and the tone row. A study of harmonization and modulations are applied to the analysis and form of standard music literature.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 101, MUS 102 and MUS 201.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 208 - Aural Skills III

    MUS 208 - Aural Skills III

    1.00 credit hours

    Intermediate work with sight singing, ear training, melodic and rhythmic dictation, seventh chords and harmonic dictation.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 209 - Aural Skills IV

    MUS 209 - Aural Skills IV

    1.00 credit hours

    Continued intermediate work with sight singing, ear training, triad recognition, melodic and rhythmic dictation, seventh chords and harmonic dictation. Introduction of modes, intervals beyond the octave and hearing of forms.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 258 - Introduction to Musical Styles and Ideas

    MUS 258 - Introduction to Musical Styles and Ideas

    3.00 credit hours

    Introduces the study of music in the extended common practice including bibliography, listening, score reading, music terminology, critical reading and writing skills. The course surveys selected music genres (polyphonic choral, chamber and symphonic music, opera) and discusses the development of musical style from medieval through contemporary practice.

    Core

    Humanities.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 301 - Music History I

    MUS 301 - Music History I

    2.00 credit hours

    The study of Western music from ancient times through the Renaissance period.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 258 and Junior standing; or instructor consent.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 302 - Music History II

    MUS 302 - Music History II

    2.00 credit hours

    The study of Western music of the Baroque and Classical periods.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 301 or instructor consent.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 303 - Music History III

    MUS 303 - Music History III

    2.00 credit hours

    The study of Western music from the Romantic period to the present day.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 302 or instructor consent.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 343 - Aural Skills V: Performance and Analysis Laboratory

    MUS 343 - Aural Skills V: Performance and Analysis Laboratory

    1.00 credit hours

    Advanced level work with sight singing and ear training including modal, atonal and contemporary idioms. Special projects involving transcriptions and dictation from students' areas of interest.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 344 - Elements of Conducting

    MUS 344 - Elements of Conducting

    2.00 credit hours

    Basic conducting technique, including posture, position of the arms and hands, simple patterns, cueing and releases. Introduction to score preparation and rehearsal technique.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 370 and MUS 343; or instructor consent.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 370 - Performance and Analysis

    MUS 370 - Performance and Analysis

    3.00 credit hours

    Advanced analytical techniques for tonal and post-tonal music. Topics include large-scale score analysis, harmonic analysis, reductive analysis and rhythmic analysis. Other topics include issues in cognition and perception and computer-assisted analysis.

    Prerequisite(s)


    Prerequiste: MUS 202 and MUS 209.

    Schedule Of Classes

    • Two 300- or 400- level theory, history or non-performance courses (Composition Majors must take MUS 342 and MUS 382 as their courses; vocal, instrumental and piano majors must take MUS 407 or MUS 408 as one of these courses and can choose among other 300- and 400-level courses for the other)
    • Private instrumental or vocal study on primary instrument with NCC faculty each term in the program: .5 credit for six terms, 1.0 credit for six terms, totaling nine credit hours
    • Large Ensemble participation on primary instrument each term in the program, four terms required for credit at .5 each
    • Private piano lessons with NCC faculty until successful completion of the Piano Proficiency Exam
    • Completion of a 30 minute Junior Recital
    • Completion of a 60 minute Senior Recital or Project
    • Completion of 12 terms of Concert/Recital Attendence

Emphasis

Within the major, select one emphasis from the following:

Vocal
  • MUS 228 - Diction for Singers I

    MUS 228 - Diction for Singers I

    1.00 credit hours

    The fundamental diction course designed to introduce singers to the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA), leading to the correct pronunciation of English and Italian. Topics include IPA transcription and the application of diction principles to important English and Italian vocal literature of the 18th through 20th centuries.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 229 - Diction for Singers II

    MUS 229 - Diction for Singers II

    1.00 credit hours

    A continuation from Diction for Singers I of the fundamental course designed to acquaint singers with the IPA, leading to the correct pronunciation of French and German. Topics include IPA transcription and the application of diction principles to important French and German vocal literature of the 18th through 20th centuries.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 228.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 329 - Vocal Pedagogy and Techniques

    MUS 329 - Vocal Pedagogy and Techniques

    1.00 credit hours

    The study of the vocal instrument and techniques for proper use. Emphasis is on healthy production and the establishment of a technique to be used with young or amateur singers. Required for Music Education majors in the choral track; recommended for any student studying voice.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 428 - Vocal Literature

    MUS 428 - Vocal Literature

    1.00 credit hours

    An overview of the performance and communication of song and operatic repertoire with detailed attention to style, interpretation, foreign language diction, phrasing, dramatic expression and performance practice. The course will cover a wide range of repertoire within the common practice period with a primary focus on performance styles, performance practices and interpretive skills as applied to English, French, German and Italian texts.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 201, MUS 228 and MUS 229.

    Schedule Of Classes

Instrumental
  • MUS 452 - Instrumental Literature

    MUS 452 - Instrumental Literature

    1.00 credit hours

    An in-depth study of chamber repertoire, instrumental genres, composers, performance practices, compositional techniques, style and the interpretation of instrumental literature primarily in the common practice period to the 20th and 21st centuries.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 201 or instructor consent.

    Schedule Of Classes

Piano
  • MUS 334 - Piano Pedagogy

    MUS 334 - Piano Pedagogy

    1.00 credit hours

    The study and methodology related to the materials and techniques of teaching piano in both individual and group settings. Topics include incorporating various classical and alternative methods for the beginning to intermediate piano student.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 201.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 336 - Collaborative Piano

    MUS 336 - Collaborative Piano

    1.00 credit hours

    An applied course focused on the aspects of collaborative piano including accompanying, chamber music, harmonization and accompanimental improvisation.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 201.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 428 - Vocal Literature

    MUS 428 - Vocal Literature

    1.00 credit hours

    An overview of the performance and communication of song and operatic repertoire with detailed attention to style, interpretation, foreign language diction, phrasing, dramatic expression and performance practice. The course will cover a wide range of repertoire within the common practice period with a primary focus on performance styles, performance practices and interpretive skills as applied to English, French, German and Italian texts.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 201, MUS 228 and MUS 229.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 434 - Piano Literature

    MUS 434 - Piano Literature

    1.00 credit hours

    An in-depth study of keyboard and piano literature of the extended common-practice period with a focus on the 18th through 20th centuries. Along with the history of the piano, the performance and analysis of forms, genres, style and primary composers are studied. The course will be taught through lectures, reading and listening assignments.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 201 or instructor consent.

    Schedule Of Classes

Composition

Four credit hours of composition lessons:

  • MUS 231 - Instrumental Lessons

    MUS 231 - Instrumental Lessons

    0.00, 0.50, 1.00 credit hours

    Available to all students. May be repeated. Students may take hour lessons for 1.0 credit with permission of the instructor. 1/2 hour lessons=0.5 credit; 1 hour lessons=1 credi;. 0 credit option only for students who have reached 12 credit hour full time limit.

    Schedule Of Classes

Music Minor

For additional programs and courses in this department, see Music.

Minor Requirements

At least 18 credit hours, including:

  • MUS 101 - Music Theory I

    MUS 101 - Music Theory I

    3.00 credit hours

    Study of basic notation rules, triads in root position, triads in first and second inversions voice leading rules, phrase structure, cadences, harmonic progressions and rudimentary forms.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 102 - Music Theory II

    MUS 102 - Music Theory II

    3.00 credit hours

    A study of non-harmonic tones, dominant seventh chords, altered non-harmonic tones and seventh chords. This course includes the study of basic harmonization techniques using triads and seventh chords as well as the study and analysis of standard music literature.

    Prerequisite(s)


    MUS 101.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 108 - Aural Skills I

    MUS 108 - Aural Skills I

    1.00 credit hours

    Introduction to basic concepts of musicianship including rhythm performance and recognition, sight singing and ear training.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 109 - Aural Skills II

    MUS 109 - Aural Skills II

    1.00 credit hours

    Continued basic work with sight singing, ear training, triad recognition and melodic and rhythmic dictation.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MUS 258 - Introduction to Musical Styles and Ideas

    MUS 258 - Introduction to Musical Styles and Ideas

    3.00 credit hours

    Introduces the study of music in the extended common practice including bibliography, listening, score reading, music terminology, critical reading and writing skills. The course surveys selected music genres (polyphonic choral, chamber and symphonic music, opera) and discusses the development of musical style from medieval through contemporary practice.

    Core

    Humanities.

    Schedule Of Classes

    • Five credit hours of performance music to be allocated as follows: four terms of private vocal or instrumental study (2.0 cr. total); and six terms of large or chamber ensemble (3.0 cr. total)
    • One 300- or 400-level non performance course (3.0 cr.)
    • Completion of six terms of Concert/Recital attendance

Music Internships and Jobs

A North Central education integrates career preparation with rich academic study. Our faculty encourages you to refine and apply your knowledge in an interconnected world. Here you'll learn to think independently and work globally to solve problems and lead.

Graduate Schools

Recent graduates in music have been accepted at:

  • Indiana University
  • Boston Conservatory
  • Northern Illinois University
  • University of Missouri
  • Northeastern University
  • Vandercook College of Music
  • Washington University
  • Illinois State University

Careers

Recent graduates of music include:

  • Performance (vocal, instrumental, jazz, musical theatre)
  • Composition and arranging
  • Private studio teaching
  • Music library science
  • Arts management
     

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