Distinguished Major Program

Brianna Meese DMP recitalDistinguished Major Applications are due in mid-February of a student's 3rd year. Specific application dates will be announced on this page and sent to all music majors in January before the due date .

The Distinguished Major Program allows outstanding music majors to work on large-scale projects during their last two semesters at the University. The project may consist of a thesis, a composition (or set of compositions), a formal recital with program notes, another type of performance or written work, or a combination project subject to approval. Each spring, the Director of Undergraduate Programs for Music (DUP) announces application procedures and a deadline.

Majors normally apply to the program during their sixth semester. After a preliminary communication with the DUP, a student will determine a main advisor and one other faculty committee member with whom they consult about the proposal, then submit a signed proposal to the DUP and Department Chair.  Those applying to prepare a formal DMP recital will be admitted by audition (administered by the Director of Music Performance and the Performance Committee), scheduled after we have received your initial application. Auditions for DMP recital projects will be held on March (specific date TBA)Students should be prepared to play at least 10 minutes of music, which does not need to be from their proposed DMP program. Auditions will be primarily in-person, but students needing to audition by video submission will be accommodated

Coursework for Distinguished Major projects is normally arranged through three credits per semester of Independent Study with a faculty advisor in each of the last two semesters at the University. These credits do not count toward music major requirements but do count as College credits:     

A student working on a thesis or composition normally takes MUSI 4993, at three credits each semester.   

A student preparing a recital normally takes honors-level private performance lessons, MUPF 4930 and MUPF 4940, at two credits per semester, as well as two semesters of academic independent study pertinent to the recital program, MUSI 4993, at one or more credits per semester. Note: students in the Performance Concentration take MUPF 4950 and MUPF 4960, Performance Concentration III-IV, instead of 4930 and 4940.

For a combination or alternatively conceived project, the Independent Study courses will be determined in consultation with the DUP and the DMP advisors at the time of application.

Projects are due by the last day of classes in the second semester of the 4th year; a student's committee may set an earlier date of completion. The committee evaluates the completed project and submits a report to the Music faculty for consideration. Completed projects may receive the B.A. in Music with Distinction, High Distinction, or Highest Distinction, provided the cumulative GPA at graduation is 3.4 or above (a CLAS rule). Any level of distinction is an unusual honor, showing strong Department admiration for a student's work. The Department awards Highest Distinction only rarely. A completed project that is less than excellent will receive no distinction.

All applications should be delivered electronically to the Director of Undergraduate Programs, Prof. Fred Maus (musicdup@virginia.edu.

The information contained on this website is for informational purposes only. The Undergraduate Record and Graduate Record represent the official repository for academic program requirements. These publications may be found at http://records.ureg.virginia.edu/index.php.


UVA Department of Music
112 Old Cabell Hall
P.O. Box 400176 Charlottesville, VA 22904-4176

Email: music@virginia.edu