Jun 13, 2024  
[PRELIMINARY] Course Catalog 2024-2025 
    
[PRELIMINARY] Course Catalog 2024-2025

Double Degree Program Degree Requirements


arrow Learn more about the Double Degree Program in general.  

arrow View a one-page summary of the Double Degree Program degree requirements. (forthcoming)


Students are responsible for compliance with the institutional graduation requirements stated in the Oberlin College and Conservatory Course Catalog in effect when they first matriculate at Oberlin unless action by an appropriate faculty body specifically directs otherwise.


Double-degree students are awarded the Bachelor of Arts degree from the College of Arts and Sciences and the Bachelor of Music degree from the Conservatory of Music. Upon completion of the program, both degrees are included on the transcript.

arrow See the Bachelor of Arts single-degree requirements.  

arrow See the Bachelor of Music single-degree requirements.  

Detailed Degree Requirements


Minimum Credit Requirement


  • Of the required minimum 214 total credits:
    • A minimum of 88 credits (22 full courses or the equivalent) must be completed through courses offered by the College of Arts and Sciences.
      • Of these, up to eight credits (two full courses) may be fulfilled by co-curricular courses.
      • At least 40 of these credits (10 full courses) must be earned by the end of the fifth semester. The student will be asked to drop one portion of the double-degree program if the 40-credit rule has not been met.
        • In order to progress satisfactorily toward the BA degree, it is strongly recommended that double-degree students will have earned at least 16 college credits by the end of the first year and 32 credits by the end of the second year.
    • A minimum of 110 credits must be completed through courses offered by the Conservatory of Music.

arrow See a full list of courses offered by the College of Arts and Sciences.  

arrow See a full list of courses offered by the Conservatory of Music.  


Note: A few combinations of college and conservatory majors, together with the institutional graduation requirements, add up to more than 214 credits. Early planning and consultation with advisors in each division is important in order to complete the program in five years. It should be noted that in a few cases completion of all requirements in five academic years may not be possible.

Major Study Requirement


Students with majors in both divisions must be aware of and comply with the requirements and regulations which apply to each major, as stated in the sections of this catalog pertaining to the Bachelor of Arts degree and to the Bachelor of Music degree.

Bachelor of Arts Major Study Requirement


Return to the summary of degree requirements.

  • Double-degree students must, before the end of the fifth semester, elect an area or field in which to major in the college.
  • Double-degree students who have not declared a major after the end of the fifth semester will be allowed to enroll only with the permission of the Academic Advising Resource Center.
  • After initially declaring a major, a student may subsequently elect a different major and drop the previously declared major with the consent of the heads of the departments or programs involved. Double-degree students may pursue a major in more than one department or program, and–if allowed by the department or program–may pursue more than one major within that department or program.
  • A double-degree student may not pursue a Bachelor of Arts major in musical studies, nor a minor in music.

Bachelor of Music Major Study Requirement


Return to the summary of degree requirements.

  • Students are required to pursue full-time one or more conservatory majors in every semester of enrollment. As such, students accepted to the Bachelor of Music degree program as part of the Double Degree Program declare a major as part of the admissions process.
  • Any student interested in changing majors or in adding a second major must initiate that request through the Office of the Associate Deans of the Conservatory. A student must audition before a committee in the department of the new major before changing performance majors or before adding a second performance major. Auditions are arranged by the Conservatory Admissions Office. An interview with the appropriate Conservatory division director is required for changes involving majors other than performance. Other supplemental materials may be required as well, as determined by each division.
  • If students are denied continuation in a major by action of the Academic Standing Committee, they may appeal to the Committee for permission to enroll for the following semester without a conservatory major for the purpose of finding a new major; regardless of the circumstances, more than one semester of enrollment without a conservatory major is not permitted.
Non-Course Requirements

Non-course requirements (such as committees, hearings, portfolio submissions, departmentals, recitals, etc.) vary by major and by concentration. These are required musical performances or submissions which allow students to illustrate their progress before a faculty panel. Successful completion of each non-course requirement permits a student to move on to the next academic year and ultimately receive their degree. Refer to the catalog page for a specific major or concentration for the exact non-course requirements associated with that major or concentration.

Winter Term Requirement


Return to the summary of degree requirements.

The purpose of this requirement is to provide students a semi-structured opportunity to pursue interests outside of regular course offerings through immersive learning experiences.

  • Winter Term takes place in January of each academic year. In certain extreme cases, permission may be granted for a student to complete a Winter Term project outside of the scheduled Winter Term. Such exceptions are granted by petition to the Registrar’s Office.
  • Winter Term projects can be completed on- or off-campus, independently or in groups.

arrow See more about Winter Term.

General Course Requirements


  • The following requirements must be satisfied with courses successfully completed at Oberlin College.
    • For the purposes of these requirements, London Program courses will be considered courses completed at Oberlin College, since they are taught by Oberlin College faculty.
    • Exceptions may be made for transfer students (students who matriculate at another institution and then transfer to Oberlin College) as noted below.
  • Individual courses may be counted simultaneously toward more than one general course requirement providing they carry the appropriate attributes.
  • Courses that are considered one-on-one arrangements, such as private readings, individual research, and honors courses, do not carry degree attributes (CD, QFR, WINT, WADV)

Curriculum Exploration Requirement


Oberlin’s curriculum exploration requirement supports breadth by introducing students to a range of scholarly approaches in different subject areas within the three divisions of the College: the arts and humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences and mathematics.

There are two parts to this requirement:

  • Students are required to complete two full academic courses or the equivalent in each of the three divisions of the college: Arts and Humanities (ARHU), Natural Sciences and Mathematics (NSMA), and Social Sciences (SSCI), with courses in two different departments or programs within each division, as determined by the course prefix.
    • One full academic course or the equivalent must be completed in each division by the end of six semesters.
    • One full course (four credits) with the DDHU attribute may count towards the ARHU requirement, but will not count towards the 88-credit college course requirement.
      arrow See courses with the DDHU attribute.  
    • Transfer students may count towards this requirement up to one full academic course or the equivalent in each division, from the courses they transfer to Oberlin College. Transfer students must complete at least one full academic course or the equivalent in each division at Oberlin College. The courses (Oberlin and/or transferred from another institution) counted towards this requirement must be in two different departments or programs within each division, as determined by the course prefix.
  • Students are also required to complete two additional full academic courses (or the equivalent) offered by the college outside their maximal division (the division in which the greatest number of courses is completed).

arrow See a list of courses with the ARHU attribute.  

arrow See a list of courses with the NSMA attribute.  

arrow See a list of courses with the SSCI attribute.  

Cultural Diversity Requirement


The Committee on Diversity Studies administers this requirement.

This requirement encourages students to understand cultural diversity in complex ways and in multiple contexts by taking courses that attend to questions of difference, imbalances in political and social power, diversity in cultures and the interactions among and between cultures, and methodological approaches to the study of diversity. In awarding Cultural Diversity (CD) credit for international study away programs and some U.S. study away programs, this requirement recognizes that study away is a profound pedagogical encounter with diversity that complements the engagement of diversity in courses across the Oberlin curriculum.

  • The required three full courses with the CD attribute must be completed in at least two different departments or programs, as indicated by the course prefix.
  • These courses must be completed at Oberlin College.
    • Students who study away in a full-semester, credit-bearing international program will receive CD credit equal to one course.
    • Students who study away in a full-semester, credit-bearing U.S. program that directly addresses diversity may petition the Committee on Diversity Studies to receive CD credit equal to one course.

arrow See a list of courses with the CD attribute.  

Quantitative and Formal Reasoning Requirement


The Committee on Quantitative and Formal Reasoning administers this requirement.

This requirement is designed to empower students to be able to use quantitative and formal reasoning in their academic and professional work, as well as in their personal lives. Courses carrying the Quantitative and Formal Reasoning (QFR) attribute aim to help students develop the ability to use tools, algorithms, or strategies to solve problems, make decisions, or evaluate evidence, and to equip students with the ability to formally evaluate models or sets of evidence. QFR courses emphasize developing and evaluating assumptions, organizing and structuring data, and conducting analyses to make sound judgments and conclusions. QFR courses often focus on quantitative data, but the hallmark of QFR is the application of formal logic and explicit rules for decision-making.

  • At least one of the required two QFR courses must be completed by the end of the sixth semester.
  • These courses must be completed at Oberlin College.
    • Courses completed during study away may not usually fulfill this requirement.
    • Transfer students may petition to count one transferred course with a comparable focus on quantitative and formal reasoning toward this requirement.

arrow See a list of courses with the QFR attribute.  

Writing Requirement


The Committee on Writing administers this requirement.

The writing requirement is designed to help double-degree students develop the ability to do the following:

  • communicate effectively in writing,
  • understand writing as a process,
  • engage in writing as a form of critical thinking,
  • demonstrate rhetorical flexibility by addressing various audiences and purposes in their writing, and
  • demonstrate awareness of the conventions and forms of writing in particular disciplines.

Double-degree students are encouraged to work closely with their conservatory teachers to hone their music-specific writing skills as they progress through their degree requirements, with particular encouragement to engage in writing artistic statements, program notes, and grant proposals.

  • It is strongly recommended that both of the required Writing Intensive (WINT) / Writing Advanced (WADV) courses be completed by the end of the fourth semester of study.
  • A third course with the WADV attribute is highly advised.
  • These courses must be completed at Oberlin College.
    • Courses completed during study away may not usually fulfill this requirement.
    • Transfer students may petition to count one transferred course with a comparable focus on writing toward this requirement.

arrow See a list of courses with the WINT attribute.  

arrow See a list of courses with the WADV attribute.  

Aural Skills Requirement


Students are expected to register for one aural skills course each semester until they have completed the core requirements.

Music Theory Requirement


Students are expected to register for one music theory course each semester until they have completed the core requirements.

Note: A music theory placement test score of 80 or higher is a prerequisite for MUTH 131 . Students with lower scores must successfully complete MUTH 120  before taking MUTH 131 . The placement exam may be taken five times and is taken online the summer prior to matriculation at Oberlin.

Music Theory Core Courses


The core courses of the music theory requirement prepare students to hear, perform, and communicate about multiple aspects of music in diverse repertoires.

Music Theory Elective Courses


Two additional music theory courses at the 200-level (MUTH 250-299) are required.These include topic- and repertoire-based classes that are chosen in consultation with academic advisors.

At least one of these two 200-level courses must have the post-tonal (PT) attribute. Courses carrying the post-tonal attribute are typically taken during a student’s second year.

Some majors and concentrations require students to take 300-level music theory electives as well, referred to as upper-level theory.


arrow See a list of courses with the PT attribute.  

Minimum GPA Requirement


Students must have a minimum overall GPA of 2.00.

Residence Requirement


Students must spend at least seven semesters in residence at Oberlin or enrolled in Oberlin programs. Work completed during an approved academic leave of absence counts toward the residence requirement. Ordinarily, the last semester must be spent in residence at Oberlin.