Theory and Composition
The program in composition, music history and theory aims to develop the aural skills needed by all musicians, to provide the necessary theoretical knowledge for the continuing study and performance of music, to develop analytical and esthetic understanding of music forms and styles, and to foster the creative impulse in music.
Required musicianship and historiography courses, Contemporary Trends, Music Since 1900, and elective theory and music history courses form the core of undergraduate study. All baccalaureate candidates must elect an additional music history course and a level I theory course; Bachelor of Music candidates, must also elect a level II theory course. All theory electives are defined as level I or level II under course descriptions.
Incoming undergraduates take placement tests and may be required to take Introduction to Musicianship before beginning the core sequence of studies in musicianship. Exemption from and credit for required college-level courses may be earned by passing examinations administered by the department. These examinations are intended for entering freshmen and transfer students only.
Incoming undergraduates who hold scores of 4 or 5 on the Advanced Placement Examination in Music Theory will receive credit by examination for TH141, Musicianship I.
Theory and music history electives
When starting at WCC, students take placement tests to determine where they should start in the theory sequence. They may also receive credit for Musicianship I if they’ve taken the AP theory test and scored a 4 or 5. The core theory courses for all WCC students are the introductory level class, Musicianship 045, and Musicianship I, II, and III. Bachelor of Music majors are also required to take Contemporary Trends, a level 1 elective, and a level 2 elective. Bachelor of Arts majors are not required to take a level 1 elective or a level 2 elective and may choose between Contemporary Trends or Music Since 1900--they must take one, but are not required to take both.
Music Computing Center
Westminster maintains a music computing facility in which students can compose, orchestrate, and print their compositions in publishable quality using computers interfaced with sampler/synthesizers as well as sequencing and music printing software.