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How to Become a Music Major at EIU

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Welcome!

We're glad you're considering becoming a music major at EIU.  We have a thriving Department with outstanding faculty, facilities, and most importantly, students!  EIU music graduates are leaders in the fields of music education and performance, and many graduates have gone on to become successful band directors, university educators, and professional performers.

Apply to the University

First, prospective students should complete the University's application and admission process.  Detailed information concerning how to apply to apply to EIU can be found here:

Apply to the Music Department

In addition to being admitted to the University, potential music majors should apply to the Music Department and must successfully complete an audition on their primary instrument or voice for Department faculty.  The Music Department holds four Audition Days every spring semester for fall admission. 

All Audition Days for the 2015-2016 school year have already been completed, however students interested in auditioning for Fall 2015 can still apply to the Department and request an alternate audition date by clicking here.

Audition Days for the 2016-2017 school year will be held as follows:

  • Monday, February 15, 2016 (Presidents' Day)
  • Saturday, February 20, 2016
  • Saturday, February 27, 2016
  • Saturday, April 2, 2016 (no scholarship consideration)

The online Application & Audition Request form for the 2016-2017 school year will be available starting September 1, 2015.  Please check back on or after that date to apply.  Note that students interested in auditioning at EIU who are unable to attend one of the above dates are invited to request an alternate audition date during the sign-up process.

Each auditioning student must also submit recommendations from two professionals familiar with his or her musical ability.  Generally, students print two copies of the Recommendation Form and ask band/choir/orchestra directors or private teachers to fill out the forms and send them back in.

To summarize, a completed application to become a music major at EIU includes:

  1. University Application
  2. Music Department Application & Audition Request (available after September 1)
  3. Recommendation Packet

Music Scholarships

The Music Department offers a limited number of scholarships to exceptionally talented incoming students each year.  Scholarship offers are determined by quality of the student's audition, the student's academic achievements in high school, and the student's Music Education Interview (if applicable).

There is no separate application for music scholarships.  Any student auditioning as a music major on or before March 1, 2016 will automatically be considered for a scholarship offer.  Scholarship offers will be mailed to students' home addresses generally before March 15, 2016.

Other Audition & Admission Information (coming soon)

  • Audition Repertoire & Procedures
  • Competitive Comparison

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to audition to become a music major?

Yes.  All incoming students must complete an audition and be formally accepted in order to become a music major.

Do I need to complete a music theory exam, piano placement, or aural skills evaluation at my audition?

All auditioning students will complete a brief aural skills evaluation during their audition.  Students will be asked to match pitches given on a piano, clap simple rhythms, and identify simple chord types. 

Students with previous experience in piano and/or music theory (including transfer students) will take placement exams upon their arrival on campus.

Do I have to audition if I only want to minor in music?

Yes.  Students wishing to pursue a minor in music still need to complete an audition.

I wish to transfer from another school.  Do I need to take placement exams to determine what credits I can transfer?

All students who wish to transfer credit in music theory, aural training, music history, applied studies, and piano are required to take placement examinations in these subjects.

I am considering a lot of different music programs.  What makes Eastern different?

We believe that EIU's Music Department provides students with the best value in education available in Illinois.  Here, we are able to combine our new, world-class facility, comprehensive and dedicated faculty, and a rigorous, modern curriculum to give students a top-notch music education at an affordable price.

What if my audition is unsuccessful?

If you are not accepted as a music major, you may still choose to attend EIU as long as you are admitted into the University.  Non-major students can still participate in ensembles, and in many cases enroll in applied lessons.  Students in this situation are invited to re-audition after one or two semesters on campus.

For More Information

If you have questions on the audition process or about becoming a music major at Eastern, please feel free to contact the Music Department's Auditions Coordinator, Dr. Andrew Cheetham.