ProMusic Performance Degree
Tiffin University’s Bachelor of Arts in Professional Music is designed to provide students with a modern musical skill set—real-world and marketable skills that are generally not taught in traditional university music degrees. It is one of just a handful bachelor’s degrees offered nationwide in which students can focus on popular music performance, and the only small college with such an option for aspiring musicians.
The degree emphasizes individual musicianship and a proficiency in multiple musical skills, and uses a diversity of musical styles – including popular music, jazz, rock, roots and classical music – to teach musicianship, rather than the more traditional repertoire most often used at the core of university programs. The degree is also flexibly designed to maximize personal growth, giving students the opportunity to both excel in strength areas and develop secondary skill areas that pertain to their individual career goals. The degree provides a praxial music education, that is, one with a foundation in music-making rather than on primarily theoretical, historical or aesthetic study.
The commercial music performance skill areas developed in the degree include: (1) proficiency on a primary instrument, (2) competence on all rhythm section instruments, (3) proficiency in writing and arranging for multiple ensemble types, and (4) developing expertise as a bandleader, musical entrepreneur, and teacher on one’s primary instrument. The flexible curriculum encourages students to study traditional primary performance areas like voice, wind or brass instruments, string instruments and rhythm section instruments, or to focus on a specific niche genre of popular and commercial music performance, including singer-songwriter studies, audio production, beatmaking/turntablism, contemporary a cappella and beatboxing. All students are required to complete a rigorous four-semester sequence in integrated Musicianship that combines practical theory and ear-training with functional keyboard, writing and arranging skills. The degree also features coursework in recording, pedagogy, music business, and a capstone project individually designed for each student.
The ProMusic degree is modeled after cutting-edge programs offered at just a few schools nationwide, and more commonly in Canada, the UK, Australia, Scandinavia, and elsewhere, and responds to the US government’s projection of independent musicians being the fastest-growing sector among music related careers over the next decade. It also builds on Tiffin University’s reputation of forward-thinking music performance and on the successes of TU’s Arts Administration–Music Industry degree and a thriving music department of more than a dozen ensembles. TU’s new degree is designed for the large numbers of high school students whose musical experiences, tastes and aspirations have been underserved by other colleges and universities.
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The Musicianship sequence of courses integrates applied music theory, writing and arranging, aural skills and keyboard harmony, From the first weeks of study, students will learn to understand music not just from a textbook and in writing, but the way it works in practice as a writer and performer.
- Musicianship I
- Musicianship II
- Musicianship III
- Musicianship IV
The Rhythm Section course gives students experience playing keyboard, guitar, bass and drums in a combo setting. Students focus on fundamental playing techniques in common commercial styles.
- The Rhythm Section
The Listening & Analysis sequence provide students with in-depth study of musical form, structure, theory and composition from across music history and various cultures, making connections between traditional and commercial styles.
- Music Listening & Analysis I
- Music Listening & Analysis II
Teaching Music is a capstone course designed to help students develop skills that will help them succeed as teachers, ensemble directors, bandleaders, managers and performers.
- Teaching Music
The Sound & Recording course sequence is designed to give students the music technology skills necessary to succeed working with live sound and in the recording studio.
- Intro to Sound and Recording
- Recording Studio Performance & Practice
Music Industry courses provide students with a cultural and historical context for their performance of commercial music.
- Survey of American Popular Music
- Survey of Music Business
Individual Private Study (vocal, instrumental or electronic music, minimum of 6 semesters)
- Voice (commercial, jazz, classical)
- Piano/Keyboard (commercial or classical)
- Guitar (classical, jazz, rock/commercial)
- Bass (bass guitar or string bass)
- Percussion (commercial or classical)
- Woodwind, brass or string instruments (commercial or classical)
- Audio production
- Beatboxing/Live-looping/A Cappella
Ensembles (minimum of 6 semesters)
The required Senior Seminar is an individually-designed performance-based capstone project or recital that allows students to draw together all areas of their music study, and serves as demo material for pursuing future work.
The required University General Education Core also includes several music-specific course options.
ProMusic majors may also choose to take up to 18 semester hours of electives, including…
- Special topics courses in musicology and ethnomusicology
- Special topics courses in songwriting, composition and arranging
- Additional private study on a secondary instrument
- Additional ensemble participation
155 Miami St.
Tiffin OH 44883