Music Composition - B.Mus.

General Information

Degree & Major: Music Composition - B.Mus.
College Name: Franklin College of Arts and Sciences
Department Name: Music
Brandon Craswell
Associate Director for Undergraduate Studies

Emily Gertsch
Composition/Theory Area Chair
(706) 542-3737

Heather Gozdan-Bynum
Academic Advisor
(706) 542-9783
Find Out More

Degree Requirements

College-wide Requirements

University-wide Requirements

Description: The Bachelor of Music in Composition provides three years of applied study on a major instrument (years one through three), as well as three years of intensive study in composition (years two through four). During such time, students are (depending on their status in the program) either encouraged or required to participate in weekly seminars that focus on analysis and evaluation of student compositions. The program includes a strong foundation in theory and music literature along with applied study on a secondary instrument. Performance of contemporary music is emphasized. The four years of study culminates with a composition recital that presents a multi-movement or large-form composition for an ensemble of three or more instruments. Music Composition majors are also required to present recitals in their applied area (vocal or instrumental). A matriculation plan is available at

Career Opportunities: The degree is designed to prepare the student to begin professional work or to pursue graduate study. Professional career opportunities for composers include writing new music for publication, providing original music for such fields as radio broadcast, film, television, and advertising, and arranging music for various collegiate or professional performing groups (e.g. marching bands, dance bands, and other professional organizations). Graduate study provides advanced training for the fields mentioned above and provides a credential for obtaining a teaching position in higher education.
of Transfer Students:
Attention Transfer and Incoming Freshmen Music Students:
Admission to the Hodgson School of Music is gained by a successful vocal or instrumental audition. This requirement applies to first-year students as well as transfer students. Auditions are evaluated by faculty members in the appropriate area of applied music. Prospective students are expected to prepare representative works from the classical repertoire. Auditions are scheduled through the Hodgson School of Music. Forms and specific requirements may be found at

For diagnostic purposes, transfer students with college credit in music theory are required to take an examination in theory immediately prior to the semester of entrance. Consult a music advisor for details of this exam. Please note: AP credit for Music Theory is not accepted for music majors.
Special Requirements: Students majoring in Music Composition are expected to earn grades of B or better in all written theory and aural skills classes. Interested students must interview with the Composition and Theory area faculty during their second semester of theory (MUSI 1120). If accepted, students may begin studying composition after the successful completion of freshmen theory. Conditional entrance to the major is given upon the completion of the third semester of theory (MUSI 2100). Full entrance to the major is granted at the end of the fourth semester of theory; this requires a jury before the full composition faculty with selected works written during the third and fourth semesters being evaluated.

For successful completion of the degree, the following is required: (1) a grade of C or better in all major courses, (2) successful completion of a keyboard proficiency test, (3) participation each semester in a large ensemble appropriate to the major performance medium (e.g., string students participate in orchestra, voice students participate in a choral group, etc.), and (4) attendance each semester at the required number of recitals stipulated by the Hodgson School of Music.

Music majors are required to pay fees for logistical services associated with required concert attendance, recitals, recording sessions, musical accompaniment, and optional locker rental. More information is available at the UGA Marketplace: GLESTORE=true.

Scholarships: Financial aid is available through scholarships sponsored by both the School of Music and the University Bands. Scholarships are awarded based on audition and are renewed each year for a period of four years, providing the student meets the requirements of the Scholarship Contract.
Student Organizations: There are many organizations and clubs open to students within the Hodgson School of Music, including Sigma Alpha Iota, Phi Mu Alpha, Kappa Kappa Psi, Pi Kappa Lambda (Beta Tau Chapter), Music Therapy Club, Collegiate National Association for Music Education, American String Teachers Association, Musicology/Ethnomusicology Student Association, Music Teacher National Association, Music Therapy Student Association, UGA Student Composers Association, and UGA American Choral Directors Association. Some of these organizations offer scholarships by audition each year.

Available Graduate Programs: The Bachelor of Music with a major in Composition is designed to prepare the student to begin professional work or to pursue graduate study at the University of Georgia or other prestigious institutions. The Hugh Hodgson School of Music offers six graduate degrees ranging from a Master of Arts in Musicology to a Doctor of Philosophy in Music with elective areas of research. More information about these graduate degrees and certification programs at the Hodgson School of Music is available at