The Music degree program at Bakersfield College is designed to provide students with a strong foundation in music theory, musicianship, and solo and group performance.

The Music Associate in Arts for Transfer degree requires Applied Music (MUSC B7) which consists primarily of individual instruction on an instrument or voice and is intended for music students with significant previous experience. This course must be taken and passed for 4 semesters to complete the degree. Auditions for students starting in the fall semester occur twice, usually in mid-May and again in August just before the fall semester begins.

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someone writing music notes on chalkboardIs Studying Music Right for Me?

A Music associate degree would benefit individuals who are passionate about music and interested in pursuing a career in the music industry or continuing their education at a four-year university. This degree program is ideal for students who want to develop their skills in music theory, performance, and music history, as well as gain hands-on experience through participation in ensembles and performance opportunities. Students who are self-motivated, disciplined, and dedicated to their craft will benefit the most from this degree program, as it requires a significant amount of practice and study to succeed. Additionally, individuals who have a creative and artistic mindset, excellent communication skills, and a love for collaboration would thrive in the music field.

Here are some key traits and skills that would make you a good fit for studying Music:

  • Passion for Music
  • Discipline and Dedication
  • Creativity
  • Excellent Communication Skills
  • Strong Work Ethic
  • Ability to Work in a Team
  • Attention to Detail
  • Flexibility and Adaptability

Music Degrees and Certificate

hand writing on a piece of music on a piano stand

Students who plan to major or minor in music should commit themselves to the highest possible level of proficiency in theory, piano, literature, group performance, and applied (individual) instruction in their performance area.

two males sitting at a soundboard in a music studio setting

The Commercial Music program at Bakersfield College provides experience and exposure to key components of commercial music, allowing students to combine their passions for technology and music.

BC students walking and talking on campus
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Music Careers

Here are some careers that someone can pursue with a Music associate degree:

  1. Music Educator: Music educators teach music theory, music history, and performance skills to students of all ages in public schools, private schools, and music academies.
  2. Music Producer: Music producers are responsible for overseeing the production of music recordings. They work with musicians, engineers, and other professionals to ensure that the final product meets the desired artistic and technical standards.
  3. Music Director/Conductor: Music directors and conductors lead musical ensembles, such as orchestras, choirs, and bands. They are responsible for selecting and arranging music, rehearsing the ensemble, and conducting performances.
  4. Musician: Musicians perform on various instruments or sing in a variety of settings, including orchestras, bands, choirs, and solo performances. They may also compose and arrange music for themselves or other performers.
  5. Music Therapist: Music therapists use music as a tool to help clients improve their physical, emotional, and mental health. They work with clients of all ages and may specialize in a particular area, such as pediatrics or geriatrics.
  6. Sound Engineer: Sound engineers are responsible for recording, mixing, and mastering music recordings. They use specialized equipment to adjust the levels and quality of sound and may work with a variety of musical genres.
  7. Music Business Professional: Music business professionals work in areas such as artist management, promotion, and distribution. They may also work in record label management, music publishing, and copyright law.
  8. Music Journalist: Music journalists write articles and reviews on music performances, albums, and artists. They may work for newspapers, magazines, or online publications.

Overall, the music industry offers a wide range of career opportunities for individuals with a Music associate degree. With dedication, hard work, and a passion for music, graduates can pursue fulfilling careers in a variety of settings. Find out benefits of studying performing arts and more career pathways at Why Study Performing Arts?

Transfer Pathways

Graduates earning a Music Associate in Arts for Transfer (AA-T) from Bakersfield College may choose to continue their education at a university to earn a 4-year degree. Graduates with an Associate in Arts for Transfer “are guaranteed admission with junior standing somewhere in the CSU system and given priority admission consideration to their local CSU campus or to a program that is deemed similar to their community major” (Bakersfield College Catalog, Educational Options).

See your Counselor and/or a Transfer Specialist for specific questions, options, and opportunities.


Academic Department: Performing Arts

Career & Learning Pathway: Arts, Communication, and Humanities

Courses: Music courses


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