Parish Music Program - LCMS Rosterable (M)

The CUW Music Department contributes to the spiritual, artistic, cultural, academic, and co-curricular aspects of campus life at the University. In doing so, the faculty is committed to blending talent and fellowship to the highest degrees of professional artistry in praise of the Lord's name. We additionally hope to impact our surrounding community while fulfilling our mission. 

A Parish Music major provides students with an option to serve the Church as church musicians. Graduates may be solemnly called to positions in congregations or recognized service organizations of the church, and may be eligible to be placed on The Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod roster with the designation “Minister of Religion Commissioned – Director of Parish Music.” Application to the Parish Music Program involves steps in addition to application to the university. To be placed on the roster, students must receive a call from a congregation.

A complete listing of enforceable Music Department procedures is published annually in the Music Department handbook, which is issued at Music major orientation. 

Program Learning Outcomes

  • Goal #1. Students will exhibit competent performing skills on their major instrument. 
  • Goal #2. Students will exhibit strong theoretical/historical knowledge, demonstrated in performance (recital) and communication (writing/speaking) skills. 
  • Goal #3. Students will demonstrate competence in vocal, keyboard, and conducting performance skills at a professional level.
  • Goal #4. Students will exhibit professional speaking, writing, and social skills appropriate to their major area. 
  • Goal #5. Students will demonstrate understanding of practical and aesthetic considerations (choosing music, teaching techniques, evaluation procedures, critical listening) appropriate to successful achievement in their chosen musical field.


Core Requirements45
Major Requirements55
Additional required courses in order to be LCMS Certified (9 credits)
Total Hours120

Major Requirements

Required Music Courses59
MUS 080Concert/Recital Attendance (each semester) 10
MUS 240Music Theory I3
MUS 241Music Theory II3
MUS 242Music Theory III3
MUS 243Music Theory IV3
MUS 250Beginning Conducting3
MUS 271Music History I3
MUS 272Music History II3
MUS 351Advanced Conducting3
MUS 445Composing and Arranging3
MUS 461Music in Worship3
MUS 465Survey of Christian Hymnody3
MUS 491Parish Music Practicum/Internship (120 clock hours)3
MUS 499Recital (Service/Concert)2
Applied Music (minimum: 4 credits in Organ)14
Select one of the following:3
Issues in Church Music
Handbell Methods and Materials
Ensemble - choose from the list below (additional to Creative Arts option in Core) 20
Chapel Ringers
Symphonic Wind Ensemble
Chapel Choir
Alleluia Ringers
Pep Band
Jazz Ensemble
String Ensemble/Chamber Orchestra
University Band
Concordia Civic Chorale
Electives 320
Additional Courses Required to be LCMS Certified 49
New Testament
Office of the Professional Church Worker
Lutheran Confessions

All music majors are required to register for MUS 080. Not registering is the same as not passing. A music major must pass 7 of 8 semesters. If a student fails 2 consecutive semesters the student will be required to attend a hearing with the music faculty.


Participation in ensembles is required every semester while in residency. All music majors and minors audit ensembles.


May include: MUS 273 Music History III, MUS 399 Junior Recital, or REL courses listed above (REL 203, 312, 404). 


These nine credits may be part of a Theology minor or elective credits. 

Students choosing not to be LCMS certified must take an addition 9 credits for a total of 20 elective credits.

Program Admission

To gain degree-seeking status as a music major, a student must:

  1. Successfully pass a qualifying audition;
  2. Prepare and present a portfolio of musical activities and accomplishments; 
  3. Audition by the deadline of the 2nd semester from the time of major declaration. 
  4. Transfer students: have their transcripts evaluated by the music faculty for determination of credited coursework and hours. 

Keyboard proficiency test or MUS 204 Keyboard Skills class required of all Music majors.