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Orchestra ready to perform on stage Orchestra ready to perform on stage
B.A.M. Degree
So you’re a talented musician who wants to combine a general music curriculum with a broad liberal arts education… the B.A.M. Degree is the answer!

Bachelor of Arts in Music

The Bachelor of Arts in Music degree is a nonprofessional degree, which offers the curriculum flexibility you need for a variety of pre‑professional studies, such as pre‑medical and pre‑legal. Students in this program study music theory, music history, applied music, and have a variety of ensemble experiences.
Professor and student examining a musical instrument

Liberal Arts Program

A liberal arts program encourages students to value the process of discovering knowledge for its own sake. Rather than thinking about a degree as a box to check off or as knowledge as a currency that gets deposited into a brain “bank,” the liberal arts teach you not only what to learn, but how to learn. This useful philosophy encourages you to become a lifelong learner as well as a capable problem-solver. If you are interested in learning in a positive and authentic environment where your original ideas and thirst for knowledge are valued, a liberal arts program may be a good fit for you. Liberal arts programs are becoming increasingly recognized for their ability to turn out graduates who are able to solve diverse social, artistic, and intellectual challenges.

Professor and student examining a musical instrument
Violinists perform live in concert

What are the Liberal Arts?

The liberal arts trace their roots to ancient Greece. Rhetorical skills and public speaking, logic, music, and math and the sciences were some of the original foci of the liberal arts. As time went on, the areas of focus shifted slightly, but an emphasis on well-rounded learners remained. These days, many liberal arts programs consist of the humanities, the social sciences, and the biological sciences/math. Liberal arts practitioners know that knowledge does not truly exist in silos. What you learn in chemistry can help you in musical studies, and the points that you learn in history can influence your study of art. Creative problem-solving and connection-making happen daily in liberal arts programs around the world.

Violinists perform live in concert
The new Student Center at University of Miami

Why Should I Go to School for Liberal Arts?

Liberal arts environments are good for students who seek to become inquisitive, out-of-the-box creative thinkers who are interested in learning about the interface between multiple subject areas. Liberal arts programs do encourage you to specialize in your particular major. Along the way, you will accrue knowledge and experiences that support your particular focus. Some of these experiences, though, include classes in other subject areas. Many students are amazed at the ways that these seemingly disparate subject areas connect in deep and meaningful ways.

The new Student Center at University of Miami
Lake Osceola at the University of Miami Coral Gables Campus

What Should I Have Accomplished By the Time I Apply to a Liberal Arts School?

Strong applicants in liberal arts programs have a genuine desire to learn and a passion for one or more subject areas. In your application, you will complete a statement of purpose about your goals and intentions for pursuing higher education in this manner. You will also send along your grade transcripts, letters of recommendation, and other supplementary materials. Schools do not expect you to be an expert in your intended field, but they do look for applicants who have a drive to grow. It’s up to you to convey what you’ll bring to the program.

Lake Osceola at the University of Miami Coral Gables Campus
Duo performs live on stage with drum machiens

What Do Liberal Arts Majors Learn?

Liberal arts majors learn a variety of transferable skills that support lifelong learning. These skills are present in every program of study and include the following:

  • Creativity. The liberal arts acknowledges that the creative pursuits are an essential part of any education. No matter your major, you will exercise your creative muscles during your degree program. The liberal arts philosophy also recognizes the creativity that is present in every discipline. Forging connections between disciplines is an inherently creative act.
  • Problem solving. Liberal arts students have long been known as the problem solvers of tomorrow. The practice of using knowledge flexibly and broadly means that liberal arts students are uniquely positioned to think critically and identify solutions. Every great leader is also a great problem solver. Studying in the liberal arts will help you hone this skill.
  • Experiential learning. Liberal arts graduates enjoy field experience, service-learning, and other hands-on approaches that elevate knowledge beyond a lecture or textbook. When you study in an environment where you have mentors who know you well, you are more easily connected to experiential opportunities that will be a good fit for you.
  • Collaboration. Liberal arts programs encourage students to work together and learn in small groups. These programs tend to steer away from using large lecture halls where students remain simply a name or a number. Instead, liberal arts programs view the student as a whole person, with individual talents, aptitudes, and goals.
Duo performs live on stage with drum machiens
Orchestra ready to perform on stage

What Does a Liberal Arts Program Entail?

Many liberal arts schools offer a curriculum of foundational classes that every student needs to take. These course touch on a variety of focus areas. In some schools, you won’t need to declare your major right away, while other schools ask you to choose an intended path at the beginning of your degree. As you progress through your courses, your studies will become increasingly specialized. The liberal arts acknowledge that individuals branch off into career paths, but that a common intellectual foundation is the basis of a healthy society.

Orchestra ready to perform on stage
Frost faculty and students practicing together in a studio

What Kinds of Careers Do Liberal Arts Majors Pursue?

Recent studies have show that liberal arts alumni are not the ones who have trouble finding a job. This is because liberal arts degrees teach transferable skills that encourage competency in a variety of jobs.

Frost faculty and students practicing together in a studio
Outside view of the Donna E. Shalala Student Center

What Should I Look for in a Liberal Arts Program?

A variety of liberal arts programs are out there, so it’s important to find a program that is a good fit for you. Perusing the program offerings, visiting the school, and meeting the faculty and students are all ways to get to know a program and determine if it is what you’ve been looking for.

Outside view of the Donna E. Shalala Student Center
Palm trees on the University of Miami campus

How Do I Find the Best Liberal Arts program for Me?

For those applicants with a musical interest, The Frost School of Music at the University of Miami is the only school that uses The Frost Method™, a tried and true approach toward liberal arts learning. In small groups in the classroom, students work with peers and faculty to learn in a hands-on and applied fashion. Through genuine mentorship, these liberal arts graduates are prepared to become lifelong learners, a valuable trait for any musician.

Palm trees on the University of Miami campus


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