Academic Catalogs

Music, Associate in Arts Degree

Banner code: 2_AA_MUS
Financial aid: Eligible 

The Associate in Arts in Music degree at GWC is designed to provide students with the breadth of lower division coursework required of all Music Majors in a collegiate setting.  Due to the fact that Music Majors begin major coursework in the freshman year, students must successfully complete all of the required courses and pass a keyboard proficiency to be awarded the Associate in Arts in Music degree.  The Associate in Arts in Music program is designed for students to complete the first two years of core Major coursework that is required of Music Majors at most baccalaureate campuses and prepare for success on Music subject placement exams.  Students should be aware that most baccalaureate college campuses require placement exams for Music Majors, even with a completed A.A. degree.

Students must audition and qualify for the Applied Music and Large Ensemble courses, which are required courses for earning an A.A. in Music.  Applied Music requires students perform one to two musical selections of contrasting style, illustrating lyrical and technical abilities on their chosen instrument or voice.  The Large Ensemble audition requirements will vary depending on ensemble and instrument or voice type, however, one consistent requirement is that students must have achieved a good level of musical proficiency in order to successfully enter the program.  Consulting with the Music Department faculty on specific requirements for specific ensembles will provide the students correct direction in preparing for the audition.

Students who successfully complete an A.A. in Music are prepared to transfer to a four-year university as General Music Majors, Performance Majors, or Music Education Majors.  All three focus areas require the same lower division preparation, and students who intend to be Performance Majors must perform in at least one recital setting during the course of study. 

The A.A. in Music program requires some additional units beyond most standard A.A. programs, as the Music Major is truly a four-year degree and a high-unit major.   Most Music Degrees for a four-year university average 75+ units for the Music Major coursework, so 26-30 units of lower division work within that major is appropriate.

Students who successfully complete the requirements of the A.A. in Music at GWC will be prepared to successfully transfer to most four-year university Music programs.  A.A. in Music students will have completed the fundamental coursework commonly required of lower division Music students at four-year institutions, covering the topics queried on most standard Music Department entrance placement exams.  

Program Level Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this program, students will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate written and aural understanding of diatonic and chromatic music theory principles.
  2. Consistently execute a collegiate level of performance and musicianship in a solo setting.
  3. Consistently execute a collegiate level of ensemble etiquette, musicianship and performance in a large ensemble setting.
  4. Complete a standard, collegiate-level piano keyboard proficiency.

Associate Degree Graduation Requirements

(See GWC website for the most up-to-date information on Associate Degree Requirements.)

  1. Completion of General Education Requirements by one of the following methods:
    1. Completion of a minimum of 18 units as listed under Areas A through E, including the Cultural Diversity Requirement.
    2. Completion of a minimum of 39 units of CSU General Education requirements. Students who complete this pattern are also eligible to receive the Certificate of Achievement in CSU General Education Breadth.
    3. Completion of a minimum of 34 (UC) or 37 (CSU) units of Intersegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum (IGETC) requirements. Students who complete this pattern are also eligible to receive the Certificate of Achievement in IGETC.
  2. Completion of a Major or Area of Emphasis—a minimum of 18 units.
  3. Completion of additional elective units to a total of 60 units.
  4. 2.0 overall Grade Point Average at GWC and 2.0 overall Grade Point Average for all colleges attended.
  5. At least 12 units completed at GWC.

Students should consult a GWC counselor in order to select the best pathway to meet their educational goals. For students who intend to transfer, the choice of general education will be specific to both their major and transfer institution.

Course Title Units
Required Courses
Music Theory
MUS G116Theory and Musicianship 13
MUS G117Theory and Musicianship 23
MUS G216Theory and Musicianship 33
MUS G217Theory and Musicianship 43
MUS G141Piano 11
MUS G142Beginning Piano II1
MUS G241Intermediate Piano I2
MUS G242Intermediate Piano II2
Large Ensemble
Select one of the following:4-8
Each course taken four times
MUS G121College Choir1
MUS G122Chamber Choir1
MUS G260Symphonic Winds1
MUS G261Wind Symphony2
Applied Music
The following course will be taken four times:4-8
MUS G290Applied Music1-2
Major Total26-34
GE Pattern (Local, CSU GE-Breadth, or IGETC)18-39
Total Units60