A different kind of conservatory

The Lawrence University Conservatory of Music offers you a rare blend of professional education in music and liberal arts, a combination that has produced outstanding performers, composers, educators, and scholars. With around 350 students, half of whom are pursuing the double-degree program, the Lawrence Conservatory is exclusively an undergraduate institution. As a result, you will not be competing with graduate students for roles in the opera, chairs in the orchestra, or faculty attention.

And while we're on the subject of competing, now might also be a good time to tell you that our Conservatory of Music believes that you will become a better musician by collaborating with your fellow musicians—not competing with them.

Degree types

You want music to be part of your studies, but with so many options, you might have questions about the difference between a Bachelor of Music (B.Mus.) degree, Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree, and the combined B.A./B.Mus. double-degree program.

Bachelor of Music (B. Mus.)

The B.Mus. degree allows you to focus primarily on music in a professional degree program that is founded upon principles of liberal education. You can major in performance, music education or theory/composition. About two thirds of your classes will be in music, including lessons, classes such as music theory and history, and ensembles, while non-music classes will comprise the remaining third of your studies. As a result, you will receive a well-rounded education along with musical instruction of the highest quality, preparing you well for the challenges and opportunities of life in the 21st century.

Double-Degree (B.A./B.Mus.)

Lawrence offers a combined B.A./B.Mus. degree program, an innovative course of study that allows you to immerse yourself in music and at least one other field of study at a very high level. In this rigorous five-year program, about half your coursework will be in music, with the other half in general education courses and a second major. The combination of a nationally ranked liberal arts college with a leading conservatory of music makes Lawrence's double-degree program a unique opportunity to pursue both musical and non-musical interests at a very high level.

Bachelor of Arts with a major in music (B.A.)

Pursuing a B.A. degree with a major in music allows you to receive advanced musical training while also extensively exploring non-musical interests. Roughly one third of your academic experience will be devoted to lessons, classes such as music theory and history, and ensembles. Another third of your program will be devoted to general education classes. The final third will be devoted to elective coursework of specific interest to you. You may even choose to pick up a second major or a minor. The B.A. degree with a major in music shows that you have completed your musical studies and training in the context of a liberal arts education and have acquired a broad set of skills and knowledge.


For More Information, Please Contact:


Kate Bittner
Director of Conservatory Admissions

Mikaela Marget
Conservatory Admissions Fellow

Planning to major in music?

If you are planning on pursuing a major in music, you have to complete a few additional steps when you apply for admission. To learn more about application requirements, jump over to our Apply section.

Interested in music, but not studying it formally?

If you do not wish to study music formally, but want to continue being a musician, we offer special classes for non-music majors, hold open auditions for all of our ensembles, and (perhaps most important) attract a lot of students to Lawrence who want to be in a musically rich environment. (Want to find out how rich? Jump over to the Conservatory website to learn more.)

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