The Senior Exercise in music consists of two major components: the comprehensive examination and the independent research/performance project.
The comprehensive examination evaluates student knowledge acquired in both required and elective courses. It is intended to address the three major areas of study within the music major--theory, history, and applied study. The music department faculty will determine and announce the format and schedule of the comprehensive examination during the fall semester of the senior year.
Independent Research/Performance Project
Majors can choose from the following types of independent research/performance projects:
- A music theory or music history paper (30-40 pages) with a public presentation
- A composition of at least 10 minutes (with a related 20-page paper) with a public presentation/written component
- A lecture/recital of at least 50-60 minutes total length (with a related 20-page paper) as a public performance/written component
- Performance of a recital 50-60 minutes on the student's major instrument (with a related 10-page paper)
Following within a few days of the presentation of the independent project, students will have a brief (30 minute) oral examination with the music faculty. This conversation allows students to assess the success of their projects, address issues that came up during the process or the presentation, and answer specific questions that pertain to the project or that tie the project to larger themes in the music curriculum.
Students presenting a recital/project/composition must submit a program plan approved by their applied teacher or project advisor (faculty) by May 1 of their junior year to the Department Chair. For recitals, any omissions from the expected content of a selection (verses, variations, movements, etc.) must be listed at this time with reasons for the omission.
Memorization of materials for most solo works is mandatory. Check with the Department Chair for clarification. The Department will notify the student whether the proposal has been accepted, accepted with modifications, or rejected. Final proposals are due October 1 of the senior year.
The Senior Exercise must be completed, in all respects, by May 1 of the senior year.