FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

Here you will find the answers to some of the Music Department's most frequently asked questions. If your questions are not answered here, please contact Carole Engel, e-mail music@carleton.edu, call 507-222-4347, or contact the current Student Departmental Adviser(s).

Should I bring my instrument with me?

Yes.  We do have instruments to loan on a first-come, first-serve basis, however, these instruments tend to be of intermediate quality and are limited in number.

How do I register for applied music lessons?

Registering for applied music lessons is a two-step process. First, register for lessons the way you would for any other class. 100-level courses entail nine half-hour lessons for one credit. 200-level courses entail nine one-hour lessons for two credits. Note: Permission of the instructor is required for registration for two-credit lessons. Second, fill out a class schedule form, available on the Applied Music page or in the lobby of the Music Hall. It's important that you mark all your weekly classes and conflicts, including work and extracurricular activities. Your lesson will be scheduled around your classes.  We also try to avoid other conflicts on your schedule, however, sometimes your work schedule may need to be adjusted.  Finally, return the form (by mail or, for incoming students, via .pdf to your instructor)! This form is needed so that your lesson time doesn't conflict with your classes.

Before or during the first week of the term, you'll receive a notice of your lesson day, time and instructor in your campus mailbox or via email. Lessons usually begin the first week of the term. If your schedule has changed and you need to move your lesson, please consult your instructor. In some cases, you'll be asked to sign up for a lesson time yourself. In that case, your instructor will contact you and give you the details.

For some lessons, such as voice and piano, an initial audition/placement appointment may be required. Students of all levels are encouraged to study privately at Carleton, but the audition/placement appointment is useful for the voice and piano faculty to assign you to an instructor and get a feel for your level of experience. For other popular instruments, a wait-list may be in effect. You'll be contacted by the Department or the instructor with more information if this is the case.

JURIED LESSONS / NON-JURIED LESSONS

There are two registration options each for half-hour Music lessons (the MUSC 1xx courses) or for hour Music lessons (the MUSC 2xx courses):

ā€¢ First option:  a one-credit course (MUSC 1xx) or a two-credit course (MUSC 2xx) that is mandatory S/CR/NC and fulfills the Arts Practice Requirement (ARP).  Students may continue with lessons even if they have satisfied the ARP requirement.

ā€¢ Second option:  a one-credit course (100-level) or a two-credit course (200-level) that carry a ā€œJā€ designation at the end of the course number (e.g. for piano, MUSC 150J or MUSC 250J).  The "J" Juried courses will receive a letter grade and will fulfill the Arts Practice Requirement (ARP).  Students may continue with Juried lessons even if they have satisfied the ARP requirement.  As with any other class, students may elect to S/CR/NC these classes, in which case, these S/CR/NC credits count toward their 30-credit maximum allowed during a student's time at Carleton.

Students are encouraged to discuss which type of lesson (Juried or Non-Juried) with their instructors. There is no special audition process for Juried lessons.

What is a Jury?  All "J" (Juried) courses will include a five to ten minute performance (Jury) normally held after ninth week, including tenth week and exam days.  The choice of repertoire and learning goals for the Jury will be decided by the primary applied music instructor in consultation with the student.  The Jury will be assessed by the student's applied music instructor working in partnership with one other faculty member.  Together, they will provide each student with constructive feedback, which will normally include written comments, about their Jury performance.  Of primary importance in assessing the Jury performance will be the level of engagement with and quality of preparation of the music performed, rather than the difficulty of the repertoire.  Students will not be judged in comparison with other students.  A recital, if presented in the second half of the term, may substitute for a Jury. The final course grade for Juried lessons will continue to be the decision of the primary instructor. 

I'm a beginner and haven't studied any voice or instrument. Can I still take lessons?

Absolutely. All you need to do is register for any one-credit applied music course.

Can I still register for music lessons if I'm also registered for three 6-credit classes?

Absolutely. You are allowed to register for one-credit or two-credit (with instructor permission) lessons in addition to three six-credit classes, regardless of class year.

If one of my three 6-credit classes is a Music course, can I still register for lessons?

Absolutely. Many students taking music lessons, in addition to their three six-credit courses, also participate in an ensemble.

How do I apply for financial aid for music lessons?

To apply for financial aid after registering for lessons, click here for information on the "Request for Assistance with Music Lessons."

I need access to a locked room or cabinet. How do I get it?

Please consult the table below for access information. Keys that are automatically granted for students in a particular course can be picked up at the Facilities Office, after the student receives a notice to pick up the key. Questions about these policies (including possible exceptions) should be directed to the Chair of the Department of Music and/or your applied music instructor.

Percussion Rooms (Concert Hall LL16 and LL24) Keys ordered through Facilities for students registered in Music 168/268, 178/278, and 183/283.
African Drum Cabinet (Concert Hall LL05A) Keys available in the Instrument Library for students registered in Music 192 and 199
Jazz Cabinet (Concert Hall LL15) Key available from the Department Assistant for students registered in (Juried & non-Juried) Music 162/262, 176/276, 177/277, 179/279, and occasionally 175/275.
Sitar Cabinets (Concert Hall LL13) Keys available from the Department Assistant for students registered in (Juried & non-Juried) Music 180/280 and 181/281.
Computer Lab (Music Hall 110) Keys are issued according to instructor's request.
Harpsichord/Fortepiano/ Organ Room (Concert Hall LL02) Keys available from the Department Assistant for students registered in (Juried & non-juried) Music 170/270 and 171/271.
Early Instruments Room (Concert Hall LL19) Keys available from the Department Assistant for students registered in Music 194 (Chamber Music).
Harp Room (Concert Hall LL22) Keys available from the Department Assistant for students registered in (Juried & non-juried) Music 169/269.
Chinese Instruments Room (Concert Hall LL20) Keys ordered through Facilities for students registered in Music (Juried & non-juried) 182/282 and 188.

Are practice rooms available?

Yes. Practice rooms are available in the lower level of the Concert Hall and the second and third floors (primarily voice, piano and strings) of the Music Hall on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Does the Music Department loan or rent out instruments?

The Music Department has a collection of standard and ethnic instruments available for loan to students registered in Ensembles and music lessons. The Music Department has a limited number of musical instruments available free of charge on a first-come first-served basis. To check out an instrument, or if you have further questions, contact the Instrument Library, Concert Hall LL04, 507-222-4468. Students needing violins or violas should contact their instructor. Some non-orchestral or non-portable instruments (African drums, sitars, harps, harpsichords, early instruments, etc.) are available for student use, but may not be exclusively checked out. Instead, a student gains access to these rooms and cabinets when he/she joins an ensemble, enrolls for lessons, or receives special permission.

The Instrument Library may not be able to accommodate all requests for instruments, so students are advised to check out instruments as soon as possible. In addition, students who already own their own instruments should be aware that the Instrument Library collection might not have instruments that are equal in quality to the instrument they own, and should take this information into account when deciding whether to bring an instrument to college.

Where can I store my instrument?

Storage lockers/space in the Concert Hall and the Music Hall are available on a first-come, first-served basis. The Instrument Library assigns storage space in the Concert Hall, while Carole Engel assigns locker space in the Music Hall, primarily for violin and violas. Many students use these lockers, while others choose to keep their smaller instruments in their rooms.

Can I submit a sample of my work along with my application for admission?

Carleton recognizes achievement in the arts and encourages students competent in them to submit slides, tapes, or other evidence of their work with their application for admission. We would appreciate it if all tapes had a note in the tape box stating the name of the applicant, the instrument, the titles of the compositions, and whether or not the student has composed or arranged any of the compositions.

I didn't take Basic Musicianship, but still want to take Music Theory.

The Music Theory Placement Exam is usually offered during the first class meeting of Music 200 (Music Theory I). Check the New Student Week schedule to confirm the time and location.