Barriers, Junior Standing, and Qualifying Quarters, Oh My!

Looking at potential colleges can be intimidating. Sifting through information to find what is important and what isn’t can be hard for anyone. As a potential music student, there are many words that may be foreign to you in your research. Some of the most confusing yet important are words such as barriers, junior standings and qualifying quarters.

Reading all of this makes it seem as if you will have an insurmountable task ahead of you. This is not the case. Oddly enough, these three words roughly mean the same thing. You will have one of these, but not more. They all serve the same purpose. They are the performances that determine if you are ready to major in music.

Why do I have to?

Your barrier, or whatever your school elects to call it, is an audition to get into your major. The initial audition is really an audition into the school. To finish a degree, you need to be accepted into your major by passing your barrier. This generally occurs after your second year in lessons.

What do I have to?

Barriers are similar to a jury in nature but are often accompanied by more obstacles. Schools may add elements of sight reading, scales, or whatever they see fit. The barrier measures if you are ready to accept the major. Because of this, the school you attend may attach multiple obstacles to be sure you are ready.

What if I fail?

Failing a barrier varies depending on your school. Some schools let you try to pass through with a supplemental jury. Some schools make you redo it. Some schools make you retake the lessons course, and some suggest you switch your major. Because of this, barriers are not something to be taken lightly. Every school handles them differently, so the best course of action is to be aware and prepare.

Barriers, much like juries are an intimidating yet very crucial part of the music major experience. It is a test of will and preparation, so showcase these. Make yourself aware of your college’s barrier requirements when you get in, and they won’t sneak up on you. No one wants to be the student who only prepared a week before performing pentatonic scales at 180.

Get ahead by investigating your school’s barrier tasks today!