Give to Music

Department of Music
Phone: (509) 963-1216
Fax: (509) 963-1239

About Your Admissions Audition

The Entrance Audition

All music majors and graduate students are required to complete an Admission Audition for acceptance into the Music Program. The audition is also used as a basis for awarding music scholarships. Auditions at CWU are designed to enable the faculty to ascertain your potential for success as a music major in your intended degree area: Music Education, Music Performance, or Music BA.

Students who would like to major in Music Composition should audition for the Music BA. Entrance into the Composition studio may not occur prior to spring of the freshman year when they enroll in MUS 120: Introduction to Composition.

Do not think of the audition as a concert performance, but instead as an opportunity to demonstrate your skill level and musicianship. Of course, you should show to your best advantage, so it is recommended that you prepare for your audition under the guidance of your current music teacher. Audition results will be announced by a letter from the department in late march. If you are accepted as a music student, we require you to inform us whether you plan to attend CWU by May 1st.

If you do not plan to major in music, but simply want to be involved in ensembles, you are not required to audition at this time. Ensemble Auditions take place the first week of school in September.

Audition Dates

Admission/Scholarship auditions for fall entrance are held in the preceding January. Complete the audition registration form for specific dates and we will contact you to arrange an audition time. We would love to hear you in person! But, if you cannot make it to our campus, you can still submit an audition online through GetAcceptd. (Please note, there is a $30.00 student application fee to submit through Get Accept'd.) In either case, please complete our Supplemental Audition Information Form and bring it to your in-person audition, or upload it with your GetAcceptd audition submission.

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Audition Requirements

Specific audition requirements are found on each studio's audition requirements page. The "Areas of Study" link in the left column will lead you to your particular instrument's page where you will find specific audition requirements. Please be sure to refer these for your audition.


Recommendations are not required, but strongly encouraged. To strengthen your application, complete and return recommendations before or at the time of your audition. Please download and print the Music Program Recommendation Form (PDF) and have your private instructor or teacher complete and submit it. Your resume, repertoire list and other supporting documents may be submitted at the time of audition, but are not required.

Other Requirements

Theory Pre-Requisite

  • Incoming Freshmen
    After you've been accepted to both CWU and the music program, you will be required to complete the Theory Diagnostic Exam. This requirement is for all incoming freshmen and is mandatory for entering the beginning music theory sequence (MUS 144) at CWU. You must score 75% or better on an online Music Fundamentals Placement Exam. OR if you score less than 75%, you must pass an online Fundamentals course with a grade of B or better. The exam is available from May 1st through August 1st and MUST be taken and passed by August 1st. This exam is taken on-line at home and will cost $10.00. Visit our Freshman Theory Fundamantals Exam page for detailed information.
  • Transfer Students
    If you are a transfer student, but have yet to take any theory courses. follow the incoming freshman instructions above. Otherwise, we are happy to give you credit for theory courses taken at other institutions. However, we want to be sure your knowledge and skills are on a par with the students who have gone through our theory sequence. So, if you are transferring any theory courses from another institution, you must take an in house theory diagnostic exam. This exam will take place at summer orientation. We will post the date/time on the website as it gets closer. Visit our Transfer Theory Diagnostic Exam page for detailed information.

Piano Proficiency

  • Incoming Freshmen
    All music majors who’s primary instrument is anything other than piano must enroll in the Class Piano sequence during their first year at CWU. If you believe you are already proficient, please read the transfer student information below

  • Incoming Transfer Students
    If you play piano, you may take a placement exam to test out of some of the sequence, or take the entire piano proficiency exam to test out of the entire sequence. You can sign up for these placement exams with the music advisor during Wildcat Welcome Weekend, as the exam will take place the first week of school. The piano proficiency exam can be found on the Music Student Resources page.


Your Audition is Your Music Scholarship Application. Music Department Scholarships are awarded based on talent, need, and the needs of the department. There are several general scholarships as well as scholarships awarded to specific areas. These awards are assigned based on individual qualifications. For incoming students, your application to and audition for the CWU Music Department is also your application for partial and full tuition music scholarships.

Special Scholarship: Jazz In the Valley Scholarship
The Board of Jazz In The Valley has established a monetary scholarship for the benefit of graduating high school student and transfer students wishing to pursue music studies at Central Washington University, with an emphasis in jazz performance and study.For more info, contact Dr. Keith Karns.

For any questions regarding auditions, please contact Music Department Advising & Recruiting Specialist

Dr. Kirsten Boldt-Neurohr