Music Courses

MUS 121C Beginning Voice students performing

At UH West Oʻahu, many music courses are designed to serve students at all levels of experience, including self-taught music students. To make the learning more meaningful and impactful, our instructors begin with what students hear, and build a shared music literacy based upon that shared listening experience.

The Music course descriptions below are also available in the UH West Oʻahu General Catalog. (Please check the Schedule of Courses for current offerings. Also, see information about General Education courses here.)

  • MUS 108 Fundamentals of Western Music
  • MUS 208 Introduction to Songwriting
  • MUS 280 Basic Theory and Aural Skills
  • MUS 363 Contemporary Histories of Traditional Musics
  • MUS 366 Stormy Weather: Jazz History
  • MUS 369 K-Pop and J-Pop: Korean & Japanese Popular Music and Society
  • MUS 114 University Chorus

General Education Courses

Most Music courses satisfy a General Education requirement– either Diversification Arts (DA) or Diversification Music (DH) – and help you graduate on time!

Diversification Arts (DA)

If you enjoy MAKING music, you’ll definitely like our “DA” courses, which develop your creative abilities and your familiarity with music terminology, and emphasize the acquisition of practical and theoretical skills. All of our MUS 121 (alpha) courses and our ensembles (University Band,University Chorus, Hawaiian Ensemble, University Strings) are DA courses. Here are some others:

  • MUS 108 (3 cr. DA) Fundamentals of Western Music
  • MUS 121B (2 cr. DA) Beginning Voice
  • MUS 121C (2 cr. DA) Beginning Piano
  • MUS 121F (2 cr. DA) Beginning Slack Key Guitar
  • MUS 121Z (2 cr. DA) Beginning ‘Ukulele
  • MUS 211 (2 cr. DA) Intro to Hawaiian Ensemble
  • MUS 311 (2 cr. DA) Hawaiian Ensemble
  • MUS 208  (3 cr. DA) Introduction to Songwriting
  • MUS 308 (3 cr. DA) Songwriting II

Diversification Humanities (DH)

If you enjoy LISTENING to different kinds music and STUDYING music’s role in our world, you’ll be interested in our “DH” courses. These develop your listening skills, your familiarity with music terminology, and with artifacts, concepts, processes, theories, or issues of concern in the study of music. They often involve inquiry into the methods of study, reflection, and evidence gathering. (Be prepared for lots of listening!).

  • MUS 106  (3 cr. DH) Introduction to Music Literature
    An exploration of elements, forms and styles of music from the Middle Ages to the present.
  • MUS 107  (3 cr. DH) Music in World Cultures
    An exploration of folk, popular, and art music from major regions of the world, with particular emphasis on Asia and the Pacific. 
  • MUS 269  (3 cr. DH) Pygmy Pop to Poly Swag: World Music and Globalization
    An exploration of interactions between traditional musics and culture in today’s globalized 21st century world.
  • MUS 366 – Stormy Weather: A Jazz History  (3 cr. DH, WI)
    An examination of major styles and artists in Jazz music with emphasis on the music’s relation to social and historical contexts.
  • MUS 367 – History of American Popular Music (3 cr. DH, WI)
    An examination of American popular music from the 19th through 21st centuries with emphasis on the music’s relation to cultural and historical contexts, and technological and aesthetic developments.
  • MUS 368 – Cool Runnings: A Reggae History (3 cr. DH, WI)
    An examination of one of the least understood and most influential music of the past half-century, exploring issues including cultural identify, politics, localization, globalization, integration, pluralism, and spirituality.