Mission and Goals of the Hurley School of Music


Mission Statement

The mission of the Hurley School of Music is to provide serious and rigorous musical training on a very high level, undergirded with the power and depth of the College’s liberal arts philosophy.  Music students may pursue the foundational BA in Music program, or more intensive programs of specialization through concentrations in performance, choral music, composition, or sacred music.  The Hurley School of Music is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music.



  • Provide a musical education of the highest quality for its music majors, whether in a program of general music study, or more focused concentration.  The Hurley School of Music places strong emphasis on participation in quality performance of music.
  • Provide instruction for the non-major in the appreciation of music, both academic and performance areas, which will enhance the cultural literacy of Centenary graduates.
  • Provide musical and educational resources for the ArkLaTex community.


Goal One: Music Majors

Goal one is achieved through the degree programs of the School of Music, as follows.

Mission of the BA Degree in Music

The purpose of the B.A. in Music degree is to produce graduates whose education — combining specializations in music with a broad background in liberal arts — prepares them for a wide range of further educational and vocational activities.

  • Students will develop their unique musical interests and talents.
  • Students will achieve proficiency in music history, music theory, keyboard skills, performance, and sight-reading on their major instrument to a level appropriate for general music studies.


Mission of the BA in Music Degree with a Concentration in Choral Music Education

The Bachelor of Arts in Music degree with a concentration in Choral Music Education improves conducting and teaching skills for students wishing to work with choral music in a variety of settings; or students who wish to enter Centenary’s MAT degree in order to pursue certification and careers as general music specialists or choral directors in K-12 programs in public, private or parochial schools.  This concentration gives them the foundational skills and knowledge to successfully pass the PRAXIS exam and enter the master’s program for certification.

  • Students will learn important skills in aural musicianship.  The development of the internal ear and the ability to diagnose problems in performance are essential skills for the teacher.
  • Students will demonstrate skills in leading musicians in rehearsal and performance.
  • Students will demonstrate managerial skills in visualizing, planning and organizing.


Mission of the BA in Music Degree with a Concentration in Performance

The Bachelor of Arts in Music degree with a concentration in Performance is a course of study for students intending to pursue a career in performance, or to embark on further study enter graduate study in a specific performing medium.

  • Students will demonstrate competent performance techniques in a specific performing medium, including sight-reading fluency, supple and beautiful sound and knowledge of a variety of different performing styles.
  • Students will learn a broad variety of repertoire for their major instrument during study for public performances on their instrument or voice.  In the case of vocal students, they will also achieve competence in foreign language diction.


Mission of the BA in Music Degree with a Concentration in Sacred Music

The Bachelor of Arts in Music degree with a concentration in Sacred Music prepares the student for music leadership in the religious community and for graduate study in the area of sacred music.

  • Students will develop the conducting and leadership competencies expected of a church musician.
  • Students will learn the history of sacred music, especially as it parallels the history of the church, including liturgical forms and hymnology.
  • Students will understand the administrative structures and procedures of church music, including management and organization.
  • Students will develop a philosophy of sacred music, including an understanding of the place of music in worship, and the creative uses of both traditional literature and newer forms of worship music.


Mission of the BA in Music Degree in Composition

The Bachelor of Arts in Music degree with a concentration in Composition offers students an understanding of the fundamental elements involved in the creation of original music.  Students in this concentration learn by modeling original work after existing works from a wide variety of style periods, with a focus on methodology.   Practical skills like computer software notation and performance production are integrated into traditional studies such as counterpoint, orchestration and analysis.  Students in this concentration may elect to pursue graduate study in composition.

  • Students will understand the aural effect of new music on listeners and learn to manipulate and control that effect through a comprehensive knowledge of the fundamental properties in music construction.
  • Students will perfect compositional techniques in their own work.


Goal Two: Non-Majors

Goal two is achieved through the following objectives.

  • To provide opportunities for non-major students to participate in music ensembles of all types.
  • To provide opportunities for non-major students to take private applied lessons.
  • To provide core classes that will enhance the liberal education of Centenary students