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Information for Transfer Students

Potential Transfer Students

Preparation for transfer students should include work in:

  • Musicianship
  • Harmony
  • Western and Non-Western Music History

Placement in the musicianship series (52A, 52B, 152A) and the harmony series (53A, 53B, 153A) at Berkeley is determined by the department placement exam, not by previous coursework. Note that there is no articulation of transferrable coursework between UC Berkeley and California community colleges for the Music Major.

The description of the placement exams and the criteria for placement can function as a guide for students in their preparation. It is important that transfer students be able to place into Music 52A (Musicianship I) during their first semester. Those who do not will need to take 20A before beginning the major sequence of classes for musicianship and harmony, which may prolong their completion of degree requirements.

Students who are able to come to the Berkeley campus may take the department’s placement exam on an advisory basis at the beginning of any semester.

Entering Transfer Students

Music Placement Procedure: All entering transfer students intending to major in music must take the Musicianship Placement Exam. Students with little or no keyboard experience should also take the Piano 45M placement exam. The Advanced Harmony Placement Exam is recommended for students with prior training in four-part harmony writing.

These exams determine the student’s placement in or exemption from the lower division musicianship and harmony series.

Transfer Advising

All new transfer students are required to participate in the online orientation process (Golden Bear Advising, or GBA), organized by the New Student Services. GBA typically takes place in June for Fall admits and October for Spring admits. As part of GBA, the Undergraduate Advisor will host an online major orientation webinar, among other advising assignments. Students should plan to attend the webinar and complete all advising assignments before scheduling individual advising appointments.

Registering for classes

At the end of the online orientation process (GBA), students should register for:

  • Music 52A: Musicianship I
  • Music 53A: Harmony I
  • Music 70 (Fall admits) or Music 80 (Spring admits)
  • Other upper division courses as appropriate

Students will be able to make adjustments to their Musicianship and Harmony courses during the add/drop period based on the placement exam results.