Music Department

Three-Year Plan for Completing the AA-T Music Degree 

Who Is It For?

The three-year plan is recommended for "college-ready" music students who enroll in 4.0 or more units of ensemble each semester. This includes any student who enrolls in two vocal ensembles each semester. This also includes students who enroll in a combination of Wind Ensemble (MUS 49) and an instrumental jazz ensemble (MUS 39 or MUS 47). The three-year plan is also recommended for music students who are not "college-ready" or for students who plan to take several music electives.

What Are The Challenges?

Two notable challenges for students on the three-year plan are maintaining proficiency and accumulated units.

Maintaining Proficiency. Many of the core courses for the degree, such as Musicianship, are “back loaded” so as to be completed at the end of the degree program rather than the beginning. This is for good reason: When a student transfers he or she will likely take one or several proficiency exams. The core courses help prepare students for these exams. Students who front load these courses—such as those who begin on the two-year plan but later decide to extend their timeline—will be at a disadvantage on proficiency exams.

Accumulated Units. By spending three years at Mt. SAC, students likely will accumulate a large number of units. Students with excessive units should be aware of the following:

  1. No more than 70 units may be transferred to CSU. Units in excess of 70 do not advance a student’s class standing upon transfer. However, any GE courses completed after accumulating 70 units still count toward fulfillment of the AA Music – Transfer degree).
  2. Students who accrue 100 or more units will automatically be assigned the lowest registration priority. These students will find it extremely difficult to secure a spot in degree-related courses.
  3. The state of California has proposed that students who exceed 90 units pay the full cost of instruction for additional coursework, currently $194 per unit. Whether this becomes policy is yet to be seen.

What If I’m Not “College-Ready”?

Students who wish to pursue the AA-T Music Degree but are not "college-ready" should visit Counseling in order to formulate an academic plan. The Music Department advises students who are not "college-ready" to complete all remedial English and math coursework before initiating a music degree plan.

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