May 23, 2024  
Undergraduate Day Catalog 2021-2022 
Undergraduate Day Catalog 2021-2022 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]




  • Mark Aliapoulios, M.M.
  • Tim Thompson, D.M.

Associate Professor

  • Geoffrey Holland, D.M.
  • Michael O’Connor, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

  • Patrick Clifford, M.M.
  • Joseph Kingma, D.M.A. 
  • Roger Pontbriand, M.M.

Artist in Residence

  • Marilyn Mims, B.M.

Statement of Purpose

The purpose of the Department of Music is to develop musicians who hear, write, and perform music intelligently and critically, and demonstrate knowledge of the historical and cultural contexts of musical works within a community of shared Christian values that integrates Christian faith and learning.

Programs of Study

The Department of Music offers programs leading to the Bachelor of Music and the Bachelor of Arts degrees. Students in the B. Mus. program may major in composition, music education, worship leadership, or performance (keyboard, instrument, or voice). There are two Bachelor of Arts majors: music and popular music. The B. A. program with a major in music has two tracks: applied music studies and music theory and literature. The department offers minors in music and popular music. Unless specified in the course description, all courses offered in the Department of Music are open to qualified students regardless of their major.  Applied music courses and some ensembles require an audition. Students are encouraged to consult a music advisor for information about specific course offerings.

The Bachelor of Music degree is intended for students who seek to develop those skills, competencies, and general qualities that are essential to the life of the professional musician. Bachelor of Music majors are expected to seek the highest level of technical competence in their major area and demonstrate exceptional potential for development in musicianship and discipline.

The primary focus of students majoring in music education is preparation for teaching at the elementary and secondary school level. Completion of the degree qualifies the student for certification in the state of Florida for teachers wishing to enter the public school system. Florida shares certification reciprocity with a number of other states.

The primary focus of students majoring in performance is preparation for a career as a performer or private teacher in higher education. Many students in the performance track continue directly to graduate school upon the completion of the undergraduate degree.

The primary focus of students majoring in composition is preparation for a career in music that is focused on composing and arranging music. Composition degree graduates are well situated for graduate study in music composition or music theory. Through private instruction and group seminars, the composition major receives instruction in the preparation of original works for performance. 

The primary focus of students majoring in Worship Leadership is to prepare for church music ministry. The curriculum shares core studies with the B. A. degree in Popular Music.

The Bachelor of Arts degree is intended for students who seek a thorough grounding in the literature and materials of music and opportunities for performance experiences within the traditional, broad-based liberal arts curriculum. The B. A. degrees in music and popular music require a student to declare a minor or second major outside music. Their curriculum is less specified than the Bachelor of Music curriculum to allow the opportunity to include courses outside of music to become part of their degree plan.

Admission Requirements

In addition to University application procedures, prospective students seeking to major in music must file an application with the School of Music and Fine Arts. Approval for study as a music major is based on several factors, including an audition, interview, and review of previous work. All prospective students must complete a live audition and interview with the music faculty prior to the semester of initial enrollment. If a student lives too far from an audition site for a live audition to be practical, a recording may be submitted for provisional consideration, to be followed up by a live audition and interview when the student arrives on campus. Application materials should be received and auditions completed at least six weeks before the beginning of the student’s first term in the music major in order to ensure a place in applied music, ensembles, and required music courses. After a student has been approved for study in a major or principal area, any change requires faculty approval and a new audition/interview. Conditional acceptance in a major or principal area of study must be upgraded to full acceptance by the end of the student’s second term in the program. No audition or interview is required for the music minor.

Auditions and Placement Examinations

Audition requirements are listed below in the major areas. All freshmen and transfer students will be evaluated for piano study and music theory placement. Tests in other areas of music may be required in order to place the student in the appropriate course level. Transfer credit for courses in music theory will be evaluated by the Department of Music upon completion of the entrance examinations.

Auditioning students may supply their own accompanist, or may request that the College of the Arts provide one. Prerecorded accompaniments are only allowed when auditioning for the Popular Music Industry and Worship Leadership programs. At the discretion of the audition committee, all prospective students may be asked to sight-read. A separate audition may be required for certain ensembles.

B.A. Students and B.Mus. Students in Music Education

Students should prepare two contrasting pieces from the classical literature, demonstrating their technical and interpretive abilities in a principal area. Instrumentalists and keyboardists will be asked to play scales and sight-read.

Prospective B.A. Students in Popular Music Industry and B.M. Students in Worship Leadership

It is understood that applicants will come with a variety of experiences, including areas of prior work (songwriting, arranging, performing, engineering), genre and stylistic interests (pop, rock, jazz), and hopes of outcomes. All applicants are expected to demonstrate certain musical skills. Applicants will perform two selections of contrasting style that represent the genre of music that the applicant hopes to study. Instrumentalists will also play major and minor scales and sight-read. Applicants to the Popular Music Industry program with experience in areas such as songwriting, arranging, performance, and recording may wish to present items or a portfolio to the audition panel. Items of interest may include a performance history, a demo CD, song lyrics, and original scores. 

Prospective B.Mus. Students in Performance and Composition

Students interested in the highly specialized areas of performance or composition must demonstrate evidence of significant private study and related musical competencies in order to pursue these areas. Such students must prepare an audition according to the following guidelines:

Voice: Two contrasting pieces from the standard art song or aria repertoire are to be performed from memory: one in English and one in Italian, French, or German. 

Keyboard: The following are to be performed from memory:

  • all scales and arpeggios (major and minor);
  • a prelude and/or fugue from The Well-Tempered Clavier, or two movements from a French Suite or English Suite by J. S. Bach;
  • a movement from a sonata by Mozart, Beethoven, or Haydn; and
  • a representative composition from the 19th or 20th century repertoire.

Strings: Violin, Viola, Cello: All major and minor scales in three octaves; prepare an etude representing current level of technical development; one movement from J. S. Bach unaccompanied sonatas, partitas or suites; one movement from a standard concerto.

Double Bass: All major and minor scales in two octaves; prepare an etude representing current level of technical development; two solo pieces in contrasting style with piano accompaniment.

Harp: Any major, harmonic minor, and melodic minor scale four octaves in 16th notes; an etude from Grossi or Pozzoli; classical era sonata movement or concerto movement; twentieth-century piece.

Woodwinds and Brass: All major and minor scales; two solo pieces in contrasting style; an etude representing current level of technical ability; possible signt-reading excerpt.

Percussion: Snare Drum: Etude of choice from Portraits in Rhythm by Anthony Cirone; demonstration of rolls, open and closed. Keyboard: Suggest performance of J. S. Bach Violin Concerto in A minor (Allegro moderato) as found in Modern School for Xylophone, Marimba, and Vibraphone by Morris Goldenberg; all scales, two octaves. Timpani: Etude of choice from Modern Method for Tympani, by Saul Goodman; demonstration of tuning skills. Accessories: Demonstration of basic techniques on cymbals, bass drum, triangle, and tambourine. Possible sight-reading excerpt.

Classical Guitar: All major scales, two octaves, any Carcassi etude, or equivalent solo piece by Guilanni, Sor, Tarrega, or other major composer for classical guitar.

Composition: Perform two contrasting works on an instrument or voice from classical literature. Submit scores of two original works. Interview with the composition faculty.

Scholarship Information

The University offers scholarships in varied amounts to a select number of highly talented and promising students. These scholarships are available through a competitive process that includes an interview and an audition with the music faculty. Students who accept these grants-in-aid must normally declare a major in music during the period of the grant and maintain a 2.75 grade point average in all music courses attempted at Palm Beach Atlantic University and a 2.5 grade point average in all PBA courses. Grade point averages that fall below the minimum requirements will result in a reduction in music scholarships. Scholarship recipients will be required to participate in at least two assigned ensembles each semester. In addition, applied keyboard students may be given accompaniment duties. More specific guidelines for maintaining scholarships are available from the office of the Dean. Students seeking music scholarship should audition prior to April 1st.

Advanced Standing in Music Theory

Upon application to the department, a student may be examined in Music Theory I and II and/or Aural Skills I and II for the purpose of gaining advanced standing in music theory. A student seeking advanced standing must earn a high pass (equivalent to a B or A) in an examination provided by the music faculty. Students granted advanced standing must choose substitute music theory courses in place of the excused credit hours. No student may place out of a music theory or musicianship course if they have previously registered for the course at PBA. An advanced standing examination may only be taken once. A student who took a Music Theory Advanced Placement course in high school and scored 3 or 4 on the Music Theory Advanced Placement Examination will receive credit for MUS 1113 - Music Theory I and MUS 1131 - Aural Skills I. Students who scored 5 on the Music Theory Advanced Placement Examination will receive credit for MUS 1123 - Music Theory II and MUS 1141 - Aural Skills II. The final decision on all applications for advanced standing rests with the music faculty.

Music: Departmental Regulations

Review of Satisfactory Progress

All music majors will have their progress in all work in the major area of study reviewed annually, and must maintain a 2.75 grade point average in all music courses attempted at Palm Beach Atlantic University and a 2.5 grade point average in all courses attempted at Palm Beach Atlantic University in order to continue in good standing. Admission to upper level study is determined on the basis of the student’s cumulative GPA in music courses completed by the end of the fourth semester, the recommendation of the fourth semester applied jury, the recommendation of the student’s applied instructor, and the satisfactory completion of the “Sophomore Review” interview with the music faculty. The music faculty reserves the right to dismiss any student from a major in music if he or she fails to meet departmental standards. Decisions to dismiss a student from a major will be reviewed automatically by the executive committee of the School of Music and Fine Arts, and a student may make appeal to the Dean. Every attempt will be made to counsel a student into a more suitable major in the event that he or she is unable to meet the standards of the department.

Residency Requirement

All music majors must complete a minimum of two years in full-time residence at PBA, including the senior year. Transfer students will not be admitted beyond the first semester of the junior year. Majors may not use transient study to fulfill courses in the Music Core or Major Requirements and Electives.

Ensemble Requirements

The School of Music and Fine Arts is committed to ensemble performance as an essential means of instruction in musicianship. Music majors participate in ensembles as required by their degree programs and scholarship requirements. Additional ensembles may be taken, but will not meet elective requirements. Most music majors must earn a minimum of 8 semester hours in ensemble performance while enrolled at PBA. Music minors must earn 4 semester hours in ensemble performance. Music scholarship recipients are required to be in at least 2 assigned ensembles every semester they receive scholarship. Specific ensemble requirements are listed in the degree plans.  Ensemble placement is determined by the Department of Music.

Ensemble Retreat Attendance

All students enrolled in Concert Choir, Women’s Chorale, and Symphonic Band are required to attend an annual retreat. These ensemble retreats are usually scheduled on a weekend in September.

Ensemble Credits, 1000 and 3000 Level

For each ensemble, the student will register for 1000-level credit until the student earns four semesters of credit in that ensemble or the student is ranked a junior by the university.

Applied Music Policies (Private Lessons)

Students in the Bachelor of Music programs in performance and composition register for an applied major area and receive 60 minutes of private instruction per week. Students in other music programs register for an applied principal area and receive 45 minutes of private instruction. All students attend a one-hour studio class and one-hour Recital Seminar each week. Secondary study in an applied area may count as an elective in the first semester after the proficiency barrier in that applied area has been fully passed. The Department of Music maintains a minimum standard of 5 hours per week of practice for each credit hour earned in the major or principal area of applied music. This standard shall be understood to reflect a “C” average. Individual instructors may set higher minimum practice standards. No credit will be given in applied major or principal studies unless the semester jury is satisfactorily passed.

Applied Lesson Credits, 1000 and 3000 Level

For each applied lesson, the student will register for 1000-level credit in applied lessons, as appropriate for the student’s major, until the student earns four semesters of applied lesson credit or the student is ranked a junior by the university.

Piano Proficiency Examination

Piano competency is required and is measured by means of the Piano Proficiency Exam. All music majors must pass all parts of the piano proficiency exam. Non-keyboard majors or principals must register continuously in piano class or piano secondary until they pass the exam. No student will be approved to present a senior recital or project or to submit a second-screening application for student teaching unless the piano proficiency exam has been passed. No student may graduate at the end of the semester in which he or she passes the piano proficiency; the piano proficiency must be completed at least one semester prior to graduation.

Recital Performance Requirements

Students preparing to present a recital should register for the appropriate course number (MUS 2480 - Sophomore Recital; MUS 3480 - Junior Recital; MUS 3490 - Graduating Recital; MUS 4470 - Senior Recital/Project for Popular Music and Worship Leadership, or MUS 4480 - Senior Recital/Project for Composition and Performance Majors) and, in the case of junior, graduating, and senior recitals, arrange a recital jury. The Sophomore Recital should be 15 minutes in length, the Junior Recital and Graduating Recital should be 30 minutes in length, the Senior Recital/Project for Popular Music and Worship Leadership should be 45 minutes in length, and the Senior Recital for performance and composition majors should be 60 minutes in length. Projects require the preparation of a prospectus and approval from the student’s major professor and a project committee. Students should seek guidance from their applied teacher or major professor when preparing for recitals and/or projects.

Graduating Recitals for music education majors and Bachelor of Arts students are 30 minutes in length. Minimum recital requirements for Bachelor of Music students are as follows. Performance majors: one sophomore recital, one junior recital, and one senior recital; music education majors: one sophomore recital, one graduating recital; composition majors: one sophomore recital in a solo performance area, one junior composition project and one senior composition project. Worship Leadership majors: one sophomore recital, and one senior recital/project.

Bachelor of Arts music majors will present a studio recital in a solo performance area and a graduating recital or project under the supervision of a major professor and committee selected from the music faculty. Length, content, and type of recital/project will be tailored to the individual student’s needs and interests. Popular Music Industry majors: one sophomore recital, and one senior recital/project. No recital is required for the music minor.

Recital Attendance Requirements

All music majors must attend at least 10 departmentally sponsored performances each semester of full-time enrollment. A total of 80 over the course of the four-year degree, prorated for transfer students, students graduating in less than eight semesters, and student teachers. Attendance at off campus recitals and concerts presented in professional arts venues is encouraged to satisfy a portion of the annual required performances, but must be approved by the student’s major applied professor, the department chair, or the dean. Performances in which a student is required to participate for ensemble course credit will be accepted for recital attendance credit. Students who fail to meet recital attendance requirements during any year of enrollment must make up the required number during the summer or subsequent semester. Students who fail to meet the departmental requirement for recital attendance by the end of their senior year will not be approved for graduation.

Recital Seminar

Music majors must register for and pass Recital Seminar each semester of applied principal or applied major registration. Transfer students entering after the sophomore year must pass 4 semesters of recital seminar. Music minors must pass two semesters of recital seminar.