A-Z Index

B.A. in Music

Comprehensive or Emphasis Areas: Audio Production, Business or Wellness

Why Major in Music?

The Bachelor of Arts degree in Music (comprehensive) is for students who desire a broad approach to their Music education, including applied study, ensemble experiences, music composition, history and theory.

The B.A. in Music can also be paired with an emphasis area, which can include Audio Production, Business or Wellness. The B.A. in Music with Emphasis is intended to provide students with the same broad experience in Music that, when paired with the emphasis area, can lead to careers in Music Production, Arts Management/Administration, Entrepreneurship, Counseling, Studio Teaching and other Music-enhanced careers.

Please note that Northwest currently does not provide coursework for string students.

Degree Hallmarks

  • Total credits required: 120
  • Small classes
  • Can customize the degree with elective choices

Minor in Music

A minor in music teaches students the fundamentals of sight-singing and ear-training, the theory of music and the literature and history of music. After taking the required courses, students can customize their minor from a list of approved electives. For a list of required courses, visit the academic catalog. This minor requires the completion of 24 credit hours.

View Requirements

Career Ready. Day One.

Northwest ensures students are career ready, day one through internships, field experiences and networking opportunities. Read Dalton's story »

Dalton is Career ready. Day One.

Career Opportunities

placement rate

100% of students who graduate with a degree in music find employment or continue their education within six months of graduation.

Possible career paths for students earning a B.A. in Music include:

  • Music Business/Entrepreneurship
  • Arts Administration
  • Counseling
  • Music Production
  • Graduate Study in Music
  • Music-Enhanced Careers


Profession-Based Learning Experiences

Whether you are an instrumentalist, vocalist or both, Northwest has many great ensembles for you to be a part of. Ensembles are open to all students regardless of their major or minor. Some ensembles are open to all students regardless of experience or ability while others require an audition.

Instrumental Ensembles

Instrumental ensembles include Bearcat Marching Band, Bearcat Pep Band, Wind Symphony, Symphonic Band, Jazz Ensemble, Studio Jazz Ensemble and Chamber Ensembles.

Vocal Ensembles

Vocal ensembles include University Chorale, Tower Choir, Madraliers, Celebration Show Choir and Musical Theater.

View a list of music-related ensembles »

Learning Resources

Ron Houston Center for the Performing Arts

Northwest has two large theaters where students perform. The 549-seat Charles Johnson Theater, housed inside the Olive DeLuce Fine Arts Building, is named for the first chairman of the Spring Festival of the Arts, which evolved into the University's Encore performances series.

Ron Houston Center for the Performing Arts contains Mary Linn Auditorium that seats 1022, the Studio Theater and other facilities related to the dramatic arts, including a black box performance space, classroom, scene shop, costume shop, green room and faculty offices.

Study Abroad

Study Abroad

Study Abroad is an opportunity for students to apply hands-on international experience to their own academic development. Faculty members supervise short-term study abroad programs that prepare students before, during and after the program. Two types of study abroad programs are available – faculty-led and traditional study abroad.

The traditional program can be a semester, summer or year-long program and is taught by Northwest’s international partner institutions.

For more information about study abroad opportunities »

The Northwest Difference

The Northwest Difference

Founded in 1905, Northwest is a traditional campus with more than 7,200 undergraduate and graduate students. Located in the middle of everywhere, Maryville is two hours from Omaha, Nebraska and Kansas City, Missouri and 2 ½ hours from Des Moines, Iowa.

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Save more than $7,200 over four years through our textbooks and laptop program.

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$22 Million money for you

Nearly $22 Million in scholarships and grants awarded annually.

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Career Ready. Day One.

Students organizations, internships and profession-based learning experiences ensure students are Career Ready, Day One.

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Graduation Rate: 90th percentile

Graduation Rate: 90th percentile of Northwest's national peer group.