Ask Joe

Associate of Arts in Music - Transfer

 Who Is the Degree For?

The AA-T in Music is for students who plan to transfer to a four-year college or university and pursue a baccalaureate degree in music (i.e., a BA or BM). It is also for students who wish to earn an Associate-level college degree while completing a comprehensive two-year curriculum in music.

What Is Required?

 The requirements of the AA-T in Music were set by the state of California. These requirements include a unit requirement, GPA requirement, a General Education requirement, math competency requirement and a major requirement. The major requirement is met by completing 19-20 units from three areas: (1) Ensemble, (2) Applied Music and (3) Music Theory and Musicianship.
  • Ensemble (2 or more units): Participate a minimum of four semesters in any eligible ensemble. Eligible ensembles include MUS 27, 31, 38, 39, 44, 45, 47, 49 and 50.
  • Applied Music (2 or more units): Complete a minimum of four semesters of MUS 16. Note: Enrollment in Music 16 requires an ensemble as a co-requisite. Students should plan on completing the Applied Music and Ensemble areas at the same time.
  • Music Theory and Musicianship (15-16 units): Complete MUS 2, 3A, 3B, 3C, and MUS 5A, 5B, 6A and 6B (students may substitute Music 7 for Music 2 and 5A, although this is not recommended).

The state's AA Music - Transfer degree framework also contains several recommendations. Students are recommended to complete courses in music appreciation, music history/literature and music technology. Students are also urged to attain keyboard proficiency during their musical studies.

In light of these recommendations—as well as the admission and lower-division requirements of CSUF, CSULB, CSUN and other common transfer destinations for Mt. SAC students—the Mt. SAC Music Department strongly recommends that its AA-T students complete courses in two additional areas: (4) Music Literature and (5) Keyboard Skills.

  • Music Literature (6 units): Complete Music 11A and 11B.
  • Keyboard Skills (2 units): Complete Music 10A and 10B.
How Long Will It Take?

The AA-T Music is by design a 2-year degree. However, many students may find it challenging to complete the degree in two years. These students include:
  • Students who are not "college-ready" upon arrival to Mt. SAC.
  • Students who choose to complete all recommended music courses.
  • Students who participate in more than one ensemble per semester.
  • Students who choose to complete music elective courses.
Is There a Recommended Plan for Completing the Degree?

The Music Department has created two plans, a two-year plan and a three-year plan. Both plans include the required music courses as well as those most strongly recommended by the Mt. SAC Music Department. Students may choose to follow these plans exactly or to modify them to suit their own needs.