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Audition General Requirements

Trumpet player in window

The audition process for all prospective Music majors and Music minors consists of the following:

  • Demonstrate sufficient proficiency in an instrument, voice, or composition
  • Receive an 80 percent or higher score on the Theory Placement Entrance Exam
  • Prepare and play a Piano Proficiency Entrance Exam. (Please see details below—not required for INFA/Music Theater track or Music minors)

Theory Placement Entrance Exam

This exam tests basic musical literacy (i.e., scales, rhythm, notation, key signature, etc.) and determines placement in freshman level theory classes. Students must receive a score of 80 percent or higher on this exam in order to be able to register for Theory I should they choose to attend IUP. Students will be allowed to retake the test on any subsequent Fine Arts audition date, and may take the test up to three times. If these requirements are not met, students must remedy this deficiency by completing MUSC 110 Fundamentals of Music Theory prior to being able to register for Theory I. This course is only offered in the second Summer session as an online course.

Piano Proficiency Entrance Exam

All IUP Music majors are required to take at least two semesters of piano (exceptions noted below). Based on their piano ability and the results of this placement exam, students who successfully audition and enroll at IUP will be placed in either Applied Piano (private instruction) or Class Piano (group setting). Students who do not pass the exam or do not choose to take the exam will automatically be placed in Class Piano I. Prospective students who indicate on their audition application that they have at least one year of piano background are strongly encouraged to prepare for and take the piano proficiency exam on the day of their audition.

Please note: Piano proficiency exams will not be administered except on audition dates.

Vocal Majors

All prospective voice majors (excluding INFA) with more than one year of piano background should prepare for and take the piano proficiency exam at their audition. If students are placed into Class Piano, they will have to complete two semesters of class piano and a jury before they will be allowed to begin their applied piano (private instruction) requirements. The BSEd in voice requires four semesters of Applied Piano, and the BA and BFA require two semesters of Applied Piano.

Suggested Audition Materials


Requirements for voice applicants for the BA/BFA in music performance and BSEd music education degree programs  


Etude or solo required for these instruments, plus sight reading expected on snare and mallets  


Suggested audition material for the B.S.Ed, B.A., or B.F.A. Composition degrees, and for the B.F.A. in Music Performance  


A prospective violin, viola, cello, or double bass student should be prepared to play from the listed repertoire.  


Requirements for Flute, Oboe, Clarinet (Bb only), Bassoon, and Saxophone  


Requirements for Trumpet/Cornet, French horn, Trombone, Euphonium, and Tuba  


Applicants should submit a portfolio of compositions for review on the day of their audition. The portfolio should include at least three scores. Recordings, even if MIDI, are strongly encouraged.  

  • Music Department
  • Cogswell Hall, Room 103
    422 South Eleventh Street
    Indiana, PA 15705-1071
  • Phone: 724-357-2390
  • Fax: 724-357-1324
  • Office Hours
  • Monday through Friday
  • 8:00 a.m.– 4:00 p.m.