< Back to Program List

Undergraduate: Jazz Studies

  • Program Overview

    Jazz Studies (JAZ)

    The minor in Jazz studies is designed to provide undergraduate students with a foundation in music theory and history that incorporates a jazz perspective in addition to the opportunity to perform in a jazz ensemble. It is particularly well-suited to students interested in developing their skills as jazz musicians while pursuing a broader education in music history and theory. Coursework includes an introduction to the study of music, courses in improvisation, music theory, the history of jazz, two semesters performing in a jazz ensemble, and a choice of courses on specialized topics, including American music, popular music, and musics of other western and non-western traditions.

  • Degrees and Requirements

    Requirements for Minor in Jazz Studies

    All courses offered for the minor in Jazz Studies must be passed with a letter grade of C or higher. At least 3 credits from Requirement 2 in either track must be at the upper division level. Completion of the minor requires 21 credits. 

    The minor is designed for students who are interested in jazz but who do not seek training in more sophisticated aspects of music theory and musicianship.  

    1. Theory:
    MUS 119 Elements of Music or MUS 130 Sound Structures
    MUS 315/316 Structural Principles of Music I and II

    Note: Students well versed in music notation and basic theory (demonstrated by the MUS 119 challenge examination) should take MUS 130 Sound Structures 

    2. History:
    MUS 308 History of Jazz and one of the following:
    MUS 304, MUS 310, MUS 311, MUS 313, MUS 319, MUS 320, or MUS 355 (if offered as a jazz-related topic)

    3. Performance:
    Six semesters (6 credits) in any combination of the following courses:
    MUS 189 Beginning Jazz Improvisation
    MUS 264 Big Band Jazz Ensemble
    MUS 267 Jazz Combo
    MUS 269 Introduction to African Drumming
    MUS 270 Advanced African Drumming

    Note: Students must audition to be accepted to MUS 189, MUS 264, and MUS 267.

    If a Music major wants to also do a minor in Jazz he/she must undertake a relevant independent project under faculty supervision, taken as a 3 credit MUS 487 Independent Project.


  • Sequence
  • Contact

    Jazz Music (JAZ)

    Minor in Jazz Music

    Department of Music, College of Arts and Sciences

    Chair: Christina Dahl

    Director of Undergraduate Studies: Deborah Heckert

    Undergraduate Secretary: Germaine Berry

    Office: 3304 Staller Center for the Arts

    Phone: (631) 632-7330








  • Courses