The Department of Music offers courses in ethnomusicology, music history, music theory, music technology, composition, and performance. Students may take most introductory courses without prerequisite. These include:

  • MUSI 110, Introduction to the Elements of Music
  • MUSI 112, Listening to Music
  • MUSI 130, Introduction to the History of Western Music: 900 to 1800
  • MUSI 131, Introduction to the History of Western Music: 1800 to the Present
  • MUSI 218, Elementary Musicianship I
  • MUSI 220, The Performance of Chamber Music
  • MUSI 221 The Performance of Chamber Music
  • MUSI 222, The Performance of Vocal Music
  • MUSI 228, Musical Theater Performance I
  • MUSI 262, Traditional and Contemporary Musics of Sub-Saharan Africa
  • MUSI 277, Coltrane and Hendrix

The department also offers freshman seminars without prerequisites. Offerings for the Class of 2021 include:

  • MUSI 002, The Role of the Performer in the Musical Experience
  • MUSI 010, Music and Diplomacy
  • MUSI 065, Shape-Note Traditions of the United States

First-year students with appropriate preparation are welcome in more advanced courses. Courses at the 200 level assume familiarity with music notation; many courses at the 300 and 400 levels assume the ability to read music.

Students interested in music—whether or not they are considering the Music major—are encouraged to take courses in music theory. Students are assigned to the appropriate course through the music theory placement test, which will be given at the beginning of both the fall and spring terms. Students who have taken the AP tests in music must still take the placement test. The courses in the music theory sequence are:

  • MUSI 210, Elementary Studies in Analysis and Model Composition I
  • MUSI 211, Elementary Studies in Analysis and Model Composition II
  • MUSI 301, Modal Counterpoint: Analysis and Composition
  • MUSI 302, Tonal Counterpoint: Analysis and Composition
  • MUSI 303, Classical Style: Analysis and Model Composition
  • MUSI 304, Nineteenth-Century Music: Analysis and Model Composition
  • MUSI 305, Twentieth-Century Music: Analysis and Model Composition
  • MUSI 307, Jazz Harmony

Additional courses in music technology and music composition that are open to qualified first-years include:

Voice and instrument lessons are available to qualified students. Students who want to take lessons must audition in the fall. Advanced students are eligible to take lessons for credit beginning with enrollment in MUSI 360 or MUSI 460. To qualify for credit, students must play at a sufficiently high level and be taking or place out of (by the music theory placement test) the appropriate theory course, as described in Yale College Programs of Study. Please see the Music Lessons page on the departmental website for more details.

Test dates and audition information will be on the departmental website and published in the Calendar for the Opening Days.