Music (BM) in Composition with an Emphasis in Concert Music


Effective 1 June 2022 through 31 May 2023

Please see the Undergraduate Catalog Archives for PDF versions of past catalogs.

This program is offered by the Leigh Gerdine College of Fine Arts/Department of Music and is only available at the St. Louis home campus.

Program Description

The composition program at Webster focuses primarily on contemporary concert music or songwriting. Students are also encouraged to explore many other musical styles and technologies such as jazz, electronic, computer and MIDI applications. Faculty composers work directly with composition majors. Numerous opportunities exist for the performance of students' works, including the Webster New Music Ensemble, Student Songwriter Showcase, and Wet Ink project.

Students in this major complete the required core, performance, composition and supportive courses, and complete one of the two emphasis areas.

Learning Outcomes

Students with the bachelor music in composition with an emphasis in concert music will:

  • Conceptualize, develop and complete original compositions for different media (acoustic, electronic, etc.) utilizing melodic, harmonic, rhythmic and textural techniques/resources gained from study and experimentation.
  • Notate compositions clearly and accurately, utilizing music publishing software to produce professional quality scores and parts suitable for performance.
  • Analyze and understand a musical composition in terms of structure and historical/cultural context.
  • Demonstrate the acquisition of skills that enhance the compositional process, including conducting, instrumental or vocal performance and musicianship.

Degree Requirements

For information on the general requirements for a degree, see Baccalaureate Degree Requirements under the Academic Policies and Information section of this catalog.

  • 84-85 required credit hours
  • Applicable University Global Citizenship Program hours, with accommodations for the bachelor of music
  • Electives

Global Citizenship Program for the Bachelor of Music

  • GLBC 1200 Global Cornerstone Seminar
  • 6 credit hours from courses designated ‘Roots of Cultures’ (One course with the MUSC prefix can fulfill GCP and major requirements simultaneously.)
  • 3 credit hours from courses designated ‘Social Systems & Human Behavior’
  • 3 credit hours from courses designated ‘Global Understanding’
  • 3 credit hours from courses designated ‘Physical & Natural World’ or ‘Quantitative Literacy’
  • KEYS 4XXX Global Keystone Seminar

NOTE: Except where specified otherwise, the above courses must not also satisfy major requirements. GCP skills requirements may be fulfilled with the courses above, courses in the major, or electives. 'Arts Appreciation' is satisfied in meeting the requirements for the major.

Required Courses

Music Theory and History Core

  • MUSC 1010 Music Theory and Aural Skills I (4 hours)
  • MUSC 1020 Music Theory II (3 hours)
  • MUSC 1820  Aural Skills II (2 hours)
  • A minimum of 6 credit hours chosen from the following:
    • MUSC 1370 Jazz Theory (3 hours
    • MUSC 2050 Songwriting Theory (3 hours)
    • MUSC 3060 Topics in Music Analysis (2-3 hours)
    • MUSC 3065 Topics in Music Analysis (2-3 hours)
  • MUSC 2070 Music in Western Culture (3 hours)
  • MUSC 2060 Social and Cultural Approaches to Music (3 hours)
  • A minimum of 4 credit hours chosen from the following:
    • MUSC 3160 Topics in Musicology (1-3 hours)
    • MUSC 3165 Topics in Musicology (1-3 hours)
    • MUSC 3170 Jazz History (3 hours)
    • MUSC 3520 History of Popular Styles (3 hours)
    • MUSC 4040 Music of the Twentieth Century (3 hours)
  • MUSC 4700 Advanced Topics in Music (taken in junior or senior year only) (2-3 hours)
  • MUSC 0200 Candidacy Examination (0 hours)
  • MUSC 0500 Senior Overview (0 hours)

Performance Courses

  • MUSC 0890 Recital Attendance (six semesters required) (0 hours)
  • MUSC 2601, MUSC 2602, MUSC 2603, MUSC 2604, MUSC 2605 Applied Music (four semesters) (8 hours)
  • MUSC 3001, MUSC 3002, MUSC 3003, MUSC 3004, MUSC 3005 Applied Music (two semesters) (4 hours)
  • MUSC 2001, MUSC 2002, MUSC 2003, MUSC 2004, MUSC 2005, MUSC 2501, MUSC 2502, MUSC 2503, MUSC 2504, MUSC 2505 Applied Music: Secondary Instrument (four semesters required; secondary instrument as approved by advisor) (4 hours)
  • MUSC 0400 Senior Recital (0 hours)

Major Ensemble
6 hours over 8 semesters to be selected from:

  • MUSC 4900 Webster University Chorale (1 hour per semester)
  • MUSC 4910 Webster University Chamber Singers (1 hour per semester)
  • MUSC 4920 Webster University Aurelia (1 hour per semester)
  • MUSC 4940 Webster University Orchestra (1 hour per semester)
  • MUSC 4970 Webster University Jazz Collective (1 hour per semester)
  • MUSC 4980 Webster University Wind Ensemble (1 hour per semester)

Composition Courses

  • MUSC 0990 Master Class (taken every semester) (0 hours)
  • MUSC 1035 Introduction to Electronic Music (2 hours)
  • MUSC 3010 Fundamentals of Composition (3 hours)
  • MUSC 3020 Techniques of the Contemporary Composer (3 hours)
  • MUSC 3070, MUSC 3080 Orchestration I, II (5 hours)
  • MUSC 4010 Studio Composition (four 16-week terms, 2 credits per term) (8 hours)
  • MUSC 4030 Eighteenth-Century Counterpoint (3 hours)

Supportive Courses

  • MUSC 1080 1085 Class Piano I, II (4 hours) (may be waived on the basis of placement exam results)
  • Choose two of the following courses, as approved by advisor:
    • MUSC 1500 Music Software Applications: Notation (1 hour)
    • MUSC 1501 Music Software Applications: Digital Audio Workstations (1 hour)
    • MUSC 1502 Music Software Applications: Presentation Tools (1 hour)
  • MUSC 3410 Conducting I (3 hours)
  • MUSC 4950 New Music Ensemble (after 2 semesters, may be repeated as elective concurrently with Major Ensemble) (2 hours)

Senior Project in Composition

The student must submit a major composition project and present a recital of works completed at Webster University of at least 45 minutes in length. The student must also have a minimum of three public performances of original works during the freshman, sophomore and junior years.