Frequently Asked Questions


What is the purpose of the Music Department?

The Music Department prepares students for careers in music or entrance into graduate school and, importantly, enriches the lives of all students participating in any of its programs, courses or activities.

How does the Music Department achieve its mission and goal?

We offer three degree programs: a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music with a concentration in a performance area (instrument or voice), in theory or in history, a Bachelor of Arts in Sacred Music with a concentration in choral conducting or keyboard, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Music Education. We also embrace the responsibility to educate or involve the entire student body in music through ensembles, private lesson instruction and general educations courses.

How can I be involved if I am not a music major?

Our ensembles are open to all students in all majors, some which may require an audition. All students are also welcome to take private music lessons in voice, piano, organ and many other instruments.

Students who meet the prerequisites may take some of the other courses offered by the Music Department.

Is Xavier accredited?

Xavier is an accredited institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Music.

What are your facilities like?

The Department of Music is housed in Edgecliff Hall, which features two classrooms, band rehearsal room, multipurpose dance studio, eight studios for private lessons, networked piano lab, state-of-the-art music/composition/technology lab, and the Long Recital Hall. Edgecliff also contains eight practice modules.

Larger performances, including recitals and concerts, are held in the Gallagher Student Center Theater and Bellarmine Chapel. Ensembles frequently perform in other venues throughout the greater Cincinnati metropolitan area.

What are your graduates doing now?

Xavier's music graduates have obtained positions as music teachers of early childhood, middle childhood, or adolescent/young adult age levels in the schools, organists/choir directors and performers or teach privately in music studios. Others have continued their studies at the graduate level or have accepted positions in the field of music merchandising or with arts organizations. With interdisciplinary studies in the Williams College of Business, interested students can lay the foundation for future careers in music administration as well. See Alumni Outcomes for additional information.


How do I enroll in a music degree program?

For more information about applying to the Music Department, please visit our Admissions page.

What music degrees does Xavier offer?

We offer three undergraduate degree programs:

  • Bachelor of Arts in Music
  • Bachelor of Arts in Sacred Music
  • Bachelor of Science in Music Education

We also offer minors in music performance, music studies, and musical theatre.

Can I transfer music credits to Xavier?

Music transfer credit is granted under the umbrella of institutional policies for transfer credit (see Xavier's Transfer Admission page).

How do I best prepare for college-level music study?

  • If you are not already doing so, all students should begin taking piano lessons before enrolling.
  • We recommend that students with minimal theory background take MUSC 100 Basic Music Theory to help in preparation for college level theory study.
  • Diligently hone your skill in your emphasis area and perform as much as reasonably possible.
  • The National Association of Schools of Music has some excellent advice on its website for preparing for college music study.


Who is eligible for applied lessons?

Any student enrolled at Xavier can take applied lessons for credit.

How many credits are received for applied lessons?

Depending on the requirements of the degree program that a student is enrolled in, the credit amount will either be .5 credit or 1 credit (half-hour or hour).

What is the difference between lesson lengths and credit amounts?

The length and credit amount of a lesson determine the requirements for the amount of literature learned and time spent in practice.

Is there a cost for applied lessons?

Students are required to pay for applied lessons. The student cost per half-hour is as follows:

  • A half-hour lesson (.5 credit) is $300 per semester.
  • A full hour lesson (1 credit) is $600 per semester.


Are there opportunities for chamber music while at Xavier?

Yes! At Xavier, we are excited about small ensemble opportunities. If there is not a small ensemble already in existence that interests you, we try to help you form one.

What sort of repertoire do the ensembles perform?

Our ensembles perform a wide variety of music genres and styles such as classical, sacred, folk, world, and contemporary music.

What performance opportunities are there?

The ensembles of the Department of Music, in addition to annual tours, frequently perform off-campus in important regional venues as a part of their curriculum.

Can I be involved if I'm not a music major?

Yes. Participation in our ensembles is open to students in all majors, some by audition. All students involved in ensembles are welcome to and encouraged to take private music lessons. For more information, visit our Ensembles page.

Financial Aid

Is there financial aid available at Xavier?

For more information about financial aid, scholarships and grants, please visit the Financial Aid web page.

Are there scholarships available for music majors?

Yes! Scholarships and Performing Arts Grants are available. For additional information, visit our Financial Aid page.


Dr. Morten Kristiansen

Chair, Associate Professor, Musicology, Music

  • (513) 745-1015

Ms. Susan Scarpaci

Administrative Assistant, Music

  • (513) 745-3801

Mr. Rick Endres

Director of Operations and Recruitment, Box Office Manager, Music

  • (513) 745-3839