Music Minor

Students can choose from the following three minor concentrations.

Music and Culture Minor
Minimum of 20 semester course credits

MUS 003Musicianship I–IV4
MUS 005Diatonic Harmony and Counterpoint I4
MUS 016/116Women, Gender, and Musical Creativity3
MUS 137Seminar in Music Literature and Criticism2-4
or MUS 160 Practicum
Plus 5—or, in the case of those taking MUS 160—7 semester course credits of Music & Culture courses and ensembles, selected from:5-7
Musics of the World: Southeast Asia, Korea and Japan
Musics of the World: Africa, the Mediterranean, and the Americas
20th-Century Musical Modernism and Its Aftermath
Experimental Music: From 1952 to the Present
Studies in European Music and Culture to 1750
Classical and Romantic Music
American Music
Film Music: Mood and Meaning
Seminar in Music Literature and Criticism
The Music of India: Brahma to Bhangra
The World of Opera
African American Music: The Meaning and the Message
Mills College Choir
Music Improvisation Ensemble I
Contemporary Performance Ensemble
Gamelan Ensemble
Haitian Drumming
Vocal Jazz Improvisation Ensemble
Performance Collective
The Technique and Mystery of Singing
Mills College Percussion Group
Improvisation Workshop
Seminar in Musical Performance, Composition, and Improvisation


Minor in Performance
Minimum of 20 semester course credits

MUS 003Musicianship I–IV4
MUS 005Diatonic Harmony and Counterpoint I4
MUS 007/107Individual Instruction4
Four (4) credits of ensemble classes:4
Mills College Choir
Music Improvisation Ensemble I
Contemporary Performance Ensemble
Gamelan Ensemble
Haitian Drumming
Vocal Jazz Improvisation Ensemble
Performance Collective
The Technique and Mystery of Singing
Mills College Percussion Group
Improvisation Workshop
Seminar in Musical Performance, Composition, and Improvisation
Plus Music & Culture electives totaling 4 credits, selected from:4
Musics of the World: Southeast Asia, Korea and Japan
Musics of the World: Africa, the Mediterranean, and the Americas
20th-Century Musical Modernism and Its Aftermath
Experimental Music: From 1952 to the Present
Studies in European Music and Culture to 1750
Classical and Romantic Music
American Music
Film Music: Mood and Meaning
Seminar in Music Literature and Criticism
The Music of India: Brahma to Bhangra
The World of Opera
African American Music: The Meaning and the Message


Electronic Music Minor
Minimum 20 semester course credits

MUS 047/147Introduction to Electronic Music4
MUS 054/154Introduction to Computer Music4
MUS 161/261Sound Techniques of Recording4
MUS 165Sound Art4
or MUS 149 Creativity Seminar: conception, collaboration, realization.
or MUS 164 Advanced Audio Recording
MUS 159Seminar in Musical Performance, Composition, and Improvisation4
or MUS 160 Practicum


Courses for Non-majors

Music is an important component of a liberal arts education. The department offers courses specifically designed for non-majors each year. These courses allow students to become culturally informed and active participants in a wide variety of musical experiences. Students engaged in discourse about music also acquire verbal and analytical skills that will be useful throughout their scholarly and/or professional careers.

Core courses in the non-major curriculum, such as MUS 001 Exploring Music: Performance, Creation, and Cultural PracticeMUS 014 Musics of the World: Southeast Asia, Korea and Japan/MUS 015 Musics of the World: Africa, the Mediterranean, and the AmericasMUS 016 Women, Gender, and Musical CreativityMUS 020 American Music, MUS 121 Film Music: Mood and Meaning, MUS 141 The Music of India: Brahma to Bhangra, and MUS 163 The World of Opera, introduce a broad range of music and demonstrate how music is part of a vast social, political, and intellectual perspective. These courses also concentrate on the development of the non-musician's musical perceptions; students learn that the ability to understand and appreciate music, and even to participate in creative musical activity, is not the sole property of those with formal musical training. Non-majors are also encouraged to enroll in several of our courses in electronic music and music technology: MUS 047 Introduction to Electronic Music; MUS 054 Introduction to Computer Music; and MUS 161 Sound Techniques of Recording.

The Music Department also offers individual instruction in voice and most instruments—even for beginners—and various musical ensembles that attract the College community, including the Mills College Choir, Chamber Music Performance Collective, and the Mills Percussion Group, along with the Gamelan, Haitian Drumming, Music Improvisation, Contemporary Performance, and Vocal Jazz Improvisation Ensembles.