Opportunities for Non-Music Majors

The Music program provides a wide range of musical experiences to enrich the education of all Xavier University students. A variety of music courses and ensembles are open to all.

Non-Major Courses

Several music courses have no prerequisite at all while others require some ability to read music, which may be learned via enrollment in Basic Music Theory (MUSC 100 – 3 credit hours). If in doubt about whether or not you meet the prerequisite, contact the instructor. The following courses were designed to meet the needs of students who are interested in studying music (Not every course listed is offered every year. Please refer to the Course Catalog for the most current listings.):

  • MUSC 100 – Basic Music Theory (3)
  • MUSC 101 – Basic Jazz Preparation (2)
  • MUSC 108 – Music, Love, and Death (3)
  • MUSC 109 – Music, War, and Peace (3)
  • MUSC 111 – Music: The Art of Listening (3)
  • MUSC 112 – Music: Now! (3)
  • MUSC 113 – American Popular Music (3)
  • MUSC 114 – Jazz: American Creative Music (3)
  • MUSC 116 – Women in Music (3)
  • MUSC 117 – History of Rock (3)
  • MUSC 118 – Heavy Metal: Music and Culture (3)
  • MUSC 120 – Behind the Music (3)
  • MUSC 123 – Music, Politics, and Rebellion (3)
  • MUSC 150 – Class Piano (1)
  • MUSC 151 – Class Voice (1)
  • MUSC 152 – Class Guitar (1)
  • MUSC 153 – Stretch Class (1)
  • MUSC 154 – Dance and Movement/Beginner Tap (1)
  • MUSC 155 – Dance and Movement/Beginner Jazz (1)
  • MUSC 156 – Dance and Movement/Advanced Tap (1)
  • MUSC 157 – Dance and Movement/Advanced Jazz (1)
  • MUSC 158 – Ballet I (1)
  • MUSC 159 – Ballet II (1)
  • MUSC 160 – Ballet Intermediate/Advanced (1)
  • MUSC 162 – Dance Sport (1)
  • MUSC 163 – World Fusion Dance (1)
  • MUSC 166 – Modern Dance (1)
  • MUSC 170 – Beginning Ballroom Dance (1)
  • MUSC 171 – Beginning Ballroom Dance II (1)
  • MUSC 172 – Advanced Ballroom Dance (1)
  • MUSC 173 – Advanced Ballroom Dance/Rhythm and Latin (1)
  • MUSC 250 – Alexander Technique (.5)

Minors in Music

Many students find that the combination of a minor in music with any other major is an attractive option at Xavier.

  • The Music Minor provides students the opportunity to continue their studies in music in a structured setting. The availability of a music minor will be of special interest to students who have actively participated in music organizations during their high school years and who have invested considerable time and resources pursuing their avocation. This course of study will provide students with a knowledge of theory, a historical/stylistic understanding of music, and vocal/instrumental performance experience.
  • The Jazz Minor is a practical, creative and comprehensive concentration of courses which gives students significant training and exposure in theory, history and performance. Students who complete the entire minor will be well qualified to excel in jazz studies at an advanced level; others who choose to pursue a less concentrated path will enjoy a deeper awareness of the jazz idiom. Courses in jazz studies include Jazz: American Creative Music, Basic Jazz Preparation, Techniques of Jazz Writing and Arranging, Techniques of Jazz Improvisation, Jazz Improvisational Workshop, and Jazz Ensemble.
  • The Musical Theatre Minor is an interdisciplinary minor that brings together courses involving singing, dancing, and stage performance to provide a unique opportunity for students interested in music and theatre to concentrate on both areas, while earning one minor. These are students who, due to constraints of time and credit hours, must currently choose between either a Music or a Theatre Minor.

Private & Group Lessons

Instrumental and vocal lessons are available for credit to non-music majors. A non-music major may register for private applied study for one credit hour if (1) the student demonstrates a level of ability and experience appropriate to college music study; and (2) the applied music instructor has room in his or her load to teach a non-music major. Variable fees apply to each course and are specified in the course listing.


Xavier’s performing ensembles frequently attract non-music majors. Each year several hundred students earn academic credit by participating in ensembles. Most are non-music majors but are talented musicians who make a high-level commitment to musical performance as an ongoing part of their University experience. Non-music majors should note:

  • Ensembles are regular classes and carry one credit hour.
  • Most ensembles require a placement audition, occurring at the beginning of the semester.

Ensembles with the largest population of non-music majors are:

Performing Arts Grants

These highly competitive grants in amounts up to $2,000 per year are annually awarded to excellent student musicians who participate in select instrumental or vocal ensembles, regardless of their major course of study. Click here to learn more about Performing Arts Grants.