Programs - Jazz Studies

BM in Jazz Studies

Develop a Strong Foundation as a Jazz Performer or Composer


Bachelor of Music in Jazz Studies

Full-time or part-time 


Start Date:
Fall or Spring semester

Application Deadline:
November 1 (Early Decision 1)
January 1 (Regular Decision and Early Decision 2)
March 1 (Internal Transfer Applications)
April 1 (Transfer Applications)
Spring: October 1

This bachelor of music program combines intensive performance training and jazz studies with a full liberal arts education. You can choose to specialize in jazz composition or jazz performance. You'll have opportunities to perform at some of New York City's leading venues, attend weekly interactive master classes, and study one-on-one with our faculty of world-renowned jazz artists.

What you'll learn
  • Music history
  • Music theory
  • Aural comprehension
  • Keyboard harmony and improvisation
  • Jazz theory and ear training
  • Jazz arranging and composition
  • Reference and research in jazz

See the curriculum and requirements for this degree.

How you'll learn

A Full Liberal Arts Education in a Conservatory Setting
To complete this bachelor's degree, you'll take 130 points, or credits, of classes: 40 in liberal arts, 57 in jazz studies (with a specialization in either jazz composition or performance), and 26 in music. You will complete a range of liberal arts core courses, including introductory study of the humanities, social sciences, science, and quantitative reasoning, as well as complete core music classes, including four semesters each in music history, music theory, aural comprehension, and keyboard harmony and improvisation.

A Flexible Course of Study
Both jazz performance and composition students can design a course of private study that includes two private lessons per semester as well as a secondary lesson selected from within the music department. Aside from a significant jazz curriculum, you can also select from a wide variety of courses in film scoring, music technology, and music business.

Performance Opportunities Throughout New York City
With over forty different jazz ensembles at NYU, you'll have unparalleled opportunities to perform with our artist faculty. Faculty ensemble directors frequently perform with students at live weekly events, so you can hone your skills on the bandstand alongside professional musicians. Students in our program are encouraged to perform as percussionists in such groups as samba marching band and two world percussion ensembles. The NYU Jazz Orchestra, our premier big band, is regularly featured at local venues such as the Blue Note and Birdland, and has released recent recording projects including The NYU Jazz Orchestra Plays the Music of Teo Macero, and The NYU Jazz Orchestra featuring Saturday Night Live Saxophonist Lenny Pickett. You'll also have the chance to observe weekly rehearsals such as Combo Nuvo the NYU Jazz Faculty in Residence Ensemble; and the Vanguard Orchestra.

Dual degree option: BM Music Performance/MA Music Education

We also offer a dual degree that allows you to earn a bachelor of music in composition or performance and a master of arts in music education in only five years. You can take courses towards your graduate degree during your junior and senior years, then complete the MA in one additional year of study, becoming eligible for New York State initial certification as a teacher of music, grades K-12. See more information about this dual degree and how to apply.

For more information about this BM program, please contact