Skip to main content

This is your Donation message.

Academic Program Guide

Music Theory

College: Music
Degree: Bachelor of Music
Limited Access: Yes

Contact: Dr. Joanna Hunt
Address: 204-D Housewright Music Bldg, Tallahassee, FL 32306-1180
Phone: (850) 644-4833

Description of Major

*Please Note: Face-to-face/in-person instruction of this program is available ONLY at the main campus in Tallahassee, FL. This program is NOT available via Online/Distance Learning.*

The program in Music Theory prepares students to become music scholars, authors and teachers of Music Theory. Entering students have auditions to determine placement in appropriate applied music classes. Graduates of this program receive the Bachelor of Music (BM) degree.

Prerequisite Coursework

Students should complete the following courses in preparation for placement in upper division status:
MUT X111, X112 (3, 3) Basic Theory I, II
MUT X116, X117 (3, 3) Basic Theory III, IV
MUT X241, X242 (1, 1) Sight singing I, II
MUT X246, X247 (1, 1) Sight singing III, IV
MUN XXXX (4) Courses in Ensemble
MVX XX1X (2-4) Applied Music
MVX XX2X (2-4) Applied Music
Secondary Piano Proficiency by placement
(or MVK X111 & MVK X112 & MVK X121 & MVK X122 to achieve piano proficiency)

Additional recommended courses: MUH 2512; MUL 2110; MUS 1010; MUL 2111; foreign language proficiency through the intermediate (2XXX) level.

Note: State-wide common prerequisites are always under review. For the most current information and for acceptable alternative courses, visit the “Common Prerequisites Manual.” This is available from the “Student Services” section of .

Admission Requirements to the Major
All entering students must meet appropriate minimum standards through a placement audition (heard by a faculty jury) in applied music before being granted admission to the College of Music. Students may enter this program as freshmen. Approval by the Music Theory faculty is required for admission.


Major Program of Studies at FSU: (75-78 hours)
All music majors are required to register for and attend Student Recital (MUS 1010) for six semesters. Jury examinations are given at the end of each applied music series.

Applied Music (16 hours)
MV_ 1311-1316r (2, 2) Applied Music Principal
MV_ 2321-2326r (2, 2) Applied Music Principal
MV_ 3331-3336r (2, 2) Applied Music Principal
MV_ 4341-4346r (2, 2) Applied Music Principal

Theory majors must study a principal instrument through (and complete by jury) the MV_ 4341-4346 series.

Applied Secondary (6 hours)
MVK 1111r (1, 1) Class Piano
MVK 2121r (1, 1) Class Piano
MVK 3131r (1, 1) Class Piano

(Required of non-keyboard principals only). Keyboard principals will choose 6 credits of music electives to satisfy the minimum requirement for the major.

Basic Music Theory (16 hours)
MUT 1111-1112 (3, 3) Basic Theory I, II
MUT 1241L-1242L (1, 1) Sight singing I, II
MUT 2116-2117 (3, 3) Basic Theory III, IV
MUT 2246L-2247L (1, 1) Sight singing III, IV

Advanced Theory (14-16 hours)
MUT 3421 (2) 18th Century Counterpoint
MUT 3422 (2) 18th Century Counterpoint OR MUT 4411 (3) 16th Century Counterpoint
MUT 3541 (3) Form and Style: Classic OR MUT 3551 (3) 19th Century Styles
MUT 3280 (2) Post Tonal Aural Skills
MUT 3571 (3) 20th Century Styles OR MUL 4572 (3) Music Since WW II

Choose 2 courses from:
MUC 4103r (2) Composition
MUS 3541 (3) Digital Synthesis
MUT 4311 (2) Orchestration
MUT 4221 (3) Wind Band Arranging
MUS 3934 (3) American Musical

Music History/Literature (10 hours)
MUL 2110 (2) Survey of Music Literature
MUH 2512 (2) Music Cultures of the World I
MUH 3211, 3212 (3, 3) Survey of Music History I and II

Other Music (2 hours)
MUS 2360 (1) Introduction to Technology in Music
MUG 3104 (1) Conducting

Ensemble (6 hours)
2 hours of accompanying (MUN 2510/4513) are suggested of all piano principals in partial fulfillment of this requirement. All woodwind and brass freshmen and freshmen transfers must register for MUN 2460 (Chamber Music) during the first Spring and second Fall Terms. (String freshmen and freshmen transfers must register during the first two Fall terms.) All woodwind, brass, or orchestral string sophomores and other transfers must register for MUN 2460 or 4463-01 during the Fall semester of the first year of residence. At least 3 hours of ensemble credit must be earned at the upper division level.

Student Recital Attendance (0 hours)
MUS 1010 (0) Transfer students must consult advisor regarding completion of this requirement.

Senior Thesis (2 hours)
MUS 4970r (2) Senior Thesis (Music Theory)

Academic Collateral (12 hours or proficiency)
Foreign Language 1120, 1121 (4, 4) Elementary level
Foreign Language 2XXX (4) Intermediate level

Digital Literacy: (3 hours)
This requirement may be met with an approved college-level course; see advisor.

Oral Communication Competency: (0-3 hours)
Students must demonstrate the ability to orally transmit ideas and information clearly. This requirement may be met with an approved college-level course.

Minimum Program Requirements - Summary
Min. Hrs. Required 120
General Education 36*
Major Coursework 75-78
Academic Collateral 12
Minor Coursework 0
Digital Literacy 3
Oral Competency 0-3
Electives to bring total hours to 120

*NOTE: Up to nine (9) hours from the required Music History, Music Literature and Music Theory courses may apply to General Education.


Mapping is FSU’s academic advising and monitoring system. Academic progress is monitored each Fall and Spring semester to ensure that students are on course to earn their degree in a timely fashion. Transfer students must meet mapping guidelines to be accepted into their majors. You may view the map for this major at


1. A minimum of 45 hours at the 3000 level or above, 30 of which must be taken at this University.
2. Half of the major course semester hours must be completed in residence at this University.
3. The final 30 hours must be completed in residence at this University.
4. Music Theory majors must pursue a study of a principal instrument through the senior level series. If piano or organ is not chosen as the principal instrument, the candidate must complete the requirements of 6 hours of Class Piano.

Employment Information

Salary Information: For more information go to: National Association of Colleges and Employers ( or the Occupational Outlook Handbook ( provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Representative Job Titles Related to this Major: Researcher, Scholarly Author, Teacher of Music Theory.

Representative Employers: Junior Colleges, Some Historical Societies, Colleges, Universities, Conservatories.

View Music Theory Academic Map