Music at Aquinas College

Liturgical Music Major (BM)

Statement of Purposes: The Bachelor of Music Degree: Liturgical Music Major is designed to prepare a future church musician for a position in music ministry upon graduation, with emphasis on the many facets of this ministry, including theology and liturgical document studies, performance and leadership. A culminating parish internship assists the student in furthering competency for a career as a Pastoral Musician and lifelong learner

Major Requirements: Eighty-five (85) semester hours.

  • At least thirty (30) semester hours must be taken at Aquinas.
  • A 2.7 GPA must be maintained in the major.
  • MCAP courses must be completed with a B- or higher, MCTH courses must be completed with a C+ or higher, and all other courses must be completed with a C or higher.
Twenty-four (24) semester hours of Music Theory:
MCTH113 Integrated Theory I 3.0
MCTH114 Integrated Theory II 3.0
MCTH115 Ear Training/Sight Singing I 1.0
MCTH116 Ear Training/Sight Singing II 1.0
MCTH/CS160 Midi Music Publishing 1.0
MCTH203 Integrated Theory III 3.0
MCTH204 Integrated Theory IV 3.0
MCTH205 Ear Training/Sight Singing III 1.0
MCTH206 Ear Training/Sight Singing IV 1.0
MCTH341 Counterpoint 3.0
MCTH352 Modern Analytical Techniques 2.0
MCTH415 Instrumentation/Orchestration 2.0
Six (6) semester hours of Music History and Literature:
MCHL350 Music History & Literature I (WI) 3.0
MCHL351 Music History & Literature II 3.0
One (1) semester hour of Music Education:
MCED315 Conducting Fundamentals 1.0
Eight (8) semester hours of College Chorus:
MCEN143 College Chorus 1.0
MCEN144 College Chorus 1.0
MCEN243 College Chorus 1.0
MCEN244 College Chorus 1.0
MCEN343 College Chorus 1.0
MCEN344 College Chorus 1.0
MCEN443 College Chorus 1.0
MCEN444 College Chorus 1.0
Sixteen (16) semester hours of MCAP Studio Applied: Piano (125-426), Organ (131-432), Guitar (151-452), or Voice (166, 142-442):
Four (4) semester hours of Valenti Handbell Ensemble:
MCEN111 Valenti Handbell Ensemble 1.0
MCEN112 Valenti Handbell Ensemble 1.0
MCEN211 Valenti Handbell Ensemble 1.0
MCEN212 Valenti Handbell Ensemble 1.0
One (1) semester hour of Voice Techniques:
MCAP165 Voice Techniques I 1.0
Two (2) semester hours of Piano Techniques:
MCAP123 Piano Techniques I 1.0
MCAP124 Piano Techniques II 1.0
10 (ten) semester hours of Music Ministry and Repertoire:
MCED323 Adv. Conducting w/Lit & Interpretation 2.0
MCHL/TY306 Music in Liturgical Celebration 3.0
MCHL307 Church Pastoral Musicians 3.0
MCHL327, 329, 330 OR 331 Literature 2.0
Nine (9) semester hours of Theology:
TY131 Bible as Story 3.0
TY230 The Liturgical Year 3.0
TY315 Eucharist: Source & Summit of Christian Life 3.0
Senior Capstone:
MCHL360 Recital Seminars (SC) 1.0
Three (3) minimum semester hours of Internship:
MCAP397 Internship in Parish Music Ministry 3.0
Departmental Assessments
Declaration of Major Hearing (DMH)  
Recital Hearing  
Senior Portfolio Review (SPR)  
Piano, Voice, and Organ Proficiency
Senior Recital: 30 minutes


  • MCTH341 Counterpoint (3)

    Through score study and continual written practice, students will acquire skills and techniques for writing first, second, third, and fourth species counterpoint in the 18th Century style and will examine how the principles are applied through to the present day. Prerequisites: MCTH 204/206.

  • MCTH415 Instrumentation/Orchestration (2)

    Through the study and application of a variety of integrative analytical models, the instrumentation/orchestration student will demonstrate competence in theirge ability to understand and express in verbal and written language, all facets under study of the various acoustic qualities of string, wind, and percussion instruments plus an understanding of the conventional pitch range, transposition, and most characteristic scoring practices applied to all the musical instruments belonging to the aforementioned instrumental groupings. Prerequisite: MCTH352.

  • MCED323 Advanced Conducting with Literature and Interpretation (2)

    Building on the foundation provided in MCED315, MCED323 is designed to give the student conductor pursuing music education, church music, conducting or graduate school an experience with and an awareness of the body of literature from the masterworks and representative composers, and the appropriate performance practices associated with these works. In addition, students will research repertoire appropriate for use in middle school, high school and community music programs; and learn how to combine repertoire into a concert program. Compositions will differ each time the course is offered and will be selected from each of the stylistic music periods. The practical application of conducting and score study within each of the various styles will be featured. Prerequisites: Sophomore status, MCED315, or approval of Chairperson.

  • MCHL306 Music in Liturgical Celebration (3)

    Integrated study of music and liturgy; historical, theological study of basic liturgy and function of music in liturgy; musician’s role in a parish.

  • MCHL307 Church Pastoral Musicians (3)

    This course is designed for the Liturgical Music major or minor student as the second of two courses addressing the role of the church music director. In this course, students will be examining the application of the documents and practices studied in MCHL306. Class topics will include interacting with the parishioners (adults and children), staff, priests/minister and other church groups, volunteer recruitment, developing musical groups, cantor training, building an inclusive parish repertoire, “I have to prepare a budget?”, time management, parish assistantships, and training lay parish ministers. Prerequisite: MCHL/TY306

  • MCHL327 Piano Literature (2)

    Study of representative works of each era beginning with early organ and harpsichord music to Baroque, Classic, Romantic, and contemporary works. Prerequisites: MCAP126.

  • MCHL329 Vocal Literature and Pedagogy (2)

    Survey of vocal music for solo voice from the 17th century to present; application of the IPA system; review interpretive technique in all stylistic periods; study of the anatomy of the voice and current voice methods, texts and journals. Prerequisite: MCAP142.

  • MCHL330 Instrumental Literature (2)

    History of the instrument specific to student’s applied area, through the examination of its literature and interpretation from its beginning to the present. Prerequisite: MCAP152.

  • MCHL331 Organ Literature (2)

    History of the organ, its literature and registration from earliest times to present. Prerequisite: MCAP132.

  • MCAP165, 166 Voice Techniques Class I and II (1,1) AP

    All beginning voice majors, minors or elective students will gain the necessary foundation, through study, exercises and songs, for successful vocal development at the college level. Study of a variety of song literature, the anatomy and physiology of the voice, Alexander Technique, and other current techniques will be incorporated as the basis for building a strong and healthy singing life or vocal career. Prerequisites: Successful completion (a grade of B- or higher) in MCAP165 to advance to MCAP166.

  • MCEN111, 112, 211, 212, 311, 312, 411, 412 Valenti Handbell Ensemble (1 each)

    Study and performance of original compositions and transcriptions of literature for handbells. An audition may be required.

  • MCEN143, 144, 243, 244, 343, 344, 443, 444 College Chorus (1 each) AP

    of vocal literature: masterworks to current styles. No audition required.

  • MCAP141, 142, 241, 242, 341, 342, 441, 442 Studio Applied Voice (2)

    Eight-semester sequence of private voice lessons at the college level. Repertoire will begin with Baroque and 20th C. literature, then progress through Classic, Romantic and Contemporary songs and arias of increasing demands as the semesters continue. Music Majors and Minors with Voice as their principle instrument will have MCAP141 waived upon successful completion of the required MCAP165/166. Fee.

  • MCAP125, 126, 225, 226, 325, 326, 425, 426 Studio Applied Piano (2)

    Eight-semester sequence of private piano lessons at the college level. Repertoire will survey Baroque, Classic, Romantic, Impressionistic, 20th C. and Contemporary works of increasing demands as the semesters continue. Fee.

  • MCAP131, 132, 231, 232, 331, 332, 431, 432 Studio Applied Organ (2 each)

    Four-year sequence of private study at the college level. Fee.

  • MCAP151, 152, 251, 252, 351, 352, 451, 452 Studio Applied Instrumental (2)

    Four-year sequence of private study at the college level. Instruction in string, woodwind, percussion, or brass instruments. See semester schedule for instrument specific course and section numbers. Classical and Jazz sections are offered. Fee.

  • MCAP397 Music Internship (3-12)

    Required for the BM in Liturgical Music major (Parish Setting). All internships must go through the AQ Advantage Center in consultation with the Music department chairperson. Prerequisite: Junior or Senior status.

  • TY131 Bible as Story (3) TF

    A theological and literary introduction to the biblical story, from creation to apocalypse. Follows the great themes of the Bible, such as paradise, peoplehood, and the presence of God. Students will learn to interpret biblical stories, discover the images and themes that appear throughout the Christian Bible, and gain an appreciation of scripture as the root of Christian faith today.