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Degree: BA

Campus: Columbus

College: Arts and Sciences

The Bachelor of Arts music major is the liberal arts program of choice for many of our students who wish to combine scholarly studies spanning a broad range of courses with music, or to pursue a major that can combine readily with a second major program in another field. Scholarly course work is central to the BA degree. Students in this program participate in ensembles, take at least two (2) years of private study in voice or a primary instrument, and participate fully in the School of Music.

After applying to the university, students planning to pursue a music major must complete a separate School of Music application and schedule an audition. Transfer students and students already at Ohio State must also complete these steps before entering the program. Find a step-by-step application guide at

Core courses:

  • Applied Music
  • Aural Training
  • Ensembles
  • Keyboard Skills
  • Music History
  • Music Theory


  • Performance
  • Theory/Composition
  • Jazz
  • Musicology
  • Open Electives

The Office of International Affairs offers more than 100 study abroad programs in 40 different countries, Students have the opportunity to take classes through an exchange program or foreign university, complete an independent study or service-learning project, conduct research or participate in an internship program. 

Education abroad allows you to engage in cross-cultural interactions and enjoy a rewarding educational experience in another country — all at the same time. It can expand your worldview, enhance your career prospects and ultimately change your life. Learn more at

Students are encouraged to (and often do) find educational, performance and administrative internship opportunities with local arts organizations such as the Columbus Association for the Performing Arts, Opera Columbus and ProMusica Chamber Orchestra

The Arts Honors Program is open to students pursuing majors in the arts (Art, Art Education, Dance, Design, Music, Theatre) in the College of Arts and Sciences.  The purpose of the Arts Honors Program is to provide opportunities for students with exceptional capabilities and motivation to achieve personal satisfaction and intellectual growth through honors courses, advanced course work, and special academic enrichment programs.

Students in the Arts Scholars program may have a major in any university college or department. The program offers students the opportunity to participate in programs that enhance their educational experience. These programs include lectures and specialized workshops, group excursions to museums and professional performances, a juried student art exhibition and performance showcase, community involvement, and trips outside of Columbus.

Music students may be interested in campus organizations such as the Jazz Club, Viola Nation and the Undergraduate Music Council. Many also join local and national organizations such as the Ohio Choral Directors Association, the National Association of Teachers of Singing, the Central Ohio Flute Association, the National Association for Music Education, the American String Teachers Association, and the Music and Entertainment Industry Student Association.

Graduates of the BA in Music program are prepared for employment in arts-related areas including arts administration, music publishing, journalism and music therapy. They are also equipped for graduate work in fields including musicology, performance and music theory. Some graduates go on to pursue law or medical school.

More than resumes, the Center for Career and Professional Success (Career Success) is the center of opportunity and connections for arts and sciences students at The Ohio State University. As early as your first year on campus, our signature programs and events provide you with opportunities to network and learn about career options from alumni and connect with employers to learn about internships and other career opportunities. Leverage resources such as funding for unpaid or minimally paid internships, workshops, digital guides, career coaching and more to prepare for your lifetime of opportunity. For more information, visit

  • Students in the BA in Music program will develop the ability to hear, identify and work conceptually with the elements of music such as rhythm, melody, harmony, structure, timbre and texture.
  • Students will develop an understanding of, and the ability to read and realize musical notation.
  • Students will develop an understanding of compositional processes and aesthetic properties of style, and the ways these are shaped by artistic and cultural forces
  • Students will develop a broad knowledge of musical literature, including the principal areas, genres and cultural sources.
  • Students will develop  the ability to communicate musical ideas, concepts and requirements to professionals and lay persons related to the practice of the major field; such communication may be musical, oral, written or visual.
  • Students will develop an understanding of the nature of the music field in the professional world, particularly related to organizational structures, work ethics, technological resources and entrepreneurial skills required for advancing their careers.
    • Students will prepare numerous assignments in music theory and music history courses, employing a wide range of software and web-based sources.
    • Students will build workplace skills through independent studies with applied faculty and ensemble directors.
  • Students will develop experience in general studies sufficient to prepare them for a range of career options.
    • Students will gain skills sufficient for clear and effective verbal and written communication.
    • Students will include a broad range of general studies courses in curricula appropriate for complementing degree requirements that address their specific music concentrations.