Areas of Study

The Department of Music at the University of Alberta offers undergraduate and graduate programs in performance, composition, choral and instrumental conducting, musicology, ethnomusicology, music theory, and popular music and media studies. Our academic programs explore music from a myriad of perspectives and in different cultures. We have experts who specialize in the practice of, and questions about, European-colonial musics; African traditions and soundscapes; the Arab world; Southeast Asian musical cultures; transitions and transnational perspectives; radio studies; the impact of technologies (from the printing press to satellites) and media industries on how we produce or consume music; collisions of settlers and Indigenous epistemologies of music and sound; disputes around musical authorship and intellectual property; collecting and annotating music; questions about class and musical elitism; popular musics; experimental musics; electronic instruments, sound design, and video game musics; intersections between music theory and philosophy; sound art and installations; and much more.

Students are invited to explore our diverse areas of study. We also have a wide selection of open course offerings, which allow students from other programs at the U of A and disciplines to explore their passion for the study, appreciation and performance of music.

Learn more about our seven areas by browsing the sections below.


Ask questions about music’s social, cultural and sounding realties with world-leading experts


Explore the strength of many voices in our outstanding choral programs


Analyze, arrange and create new sound and music


Develop your artistry as you explore the monumental piano repertoire


Gain solid foundations and diverse experience in violin, viola, cello, double bass, harp and classical guitar study


Develop your vocal artistry through our comprehensive voice training programs and ensembles

sheet music
Wind & Percussion

From solo study to the Symphonic Winds, hone your skills on brass, woodwind, and percussion instruments