Be inventive

UVM Post-Bop Combo
Alex Toth

The UVM Jazz Studies Program's guiding principle is that which has inspired jazz musicians from the very beginning: the quest for an individual sound and style. Become a part of UVM Jazz Studies and experience the excitement and energy of a dynamic and growing jazz program.

World-class faculty guide you through a challenging and rewarding jazz curriculum

Students learn fundamentals through classroom and individual study with our world-class faculty. Beginning with courses in traditional music theory, our students progress into jazz-oriented courses such as Theory and Practice of Jazz Improvisation, Jazz History, and Introduction to World Music Cultures. Upper level courses include Jazz Composition and Arranging and Advanced Improvisational Techniques. View music courses.

We frequently host guest artists for workshops and concerts. There is a strong emphasis on private lessons and performing ensembles -- such as University Jazz Ensemble, Latin Jazz Ensemble, and Jazz Vocal Ensemble -- each semester. The capstone requirement is a Senior Recital.

All Jazz Studies majors learn basic jazz piano in our Piano Lab. Students may also elect to receive training in the music software and recording techniques in our Music Technology Lab and Recording Studio.

Audition and Declaring the Major

All students interested in majoring in Jazz Studies must first pass an entrance audition on an instrument or voice. In order to complete the major, all students must attain intermediate level on a single instrument or voice;  and must pass a junior standing examination, usually at the end of the sophomore year.

Schedule your music major audition


Beyond the classroom

Jazz Studies majors usually play in the University Jazz Ensemble and/or in one of the smaller jazz combos: Nonet, Post-Bop, Latin Jazz Ensemble, Jazz Guitar Ensemble, Chromaticats, and Jazz Vocal Ensemble. Burlington's vibrant jazz scene provides enormous performance opportunities for students while they pursue their undergraduate education.

Students play gigs at venues like Hotel Vermont's Juniper Club, Nectar's, and the Discover Jazz Festival each June. Many students have the opportunity to perform alongside jazz faculty members such as Grammy winner Ray Vega. 

Learn from the best

Our jazz faculty includes a Fulbright scholar, a Grammy Award winner, and a recipient of the Kroepsch-Maurice Excellence in Teaching Award. View our faculty directory.

Graduate employment rate


of UVM Arts & Sciences graduates were employed within six months of graduation.


  • performer
  • teacher
  • composer

Related Information


We also offer a minor in music.

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the B.A. in Music degree with a Jazz Studies concentration, students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate advanced skill on a single instrument or voice
  • Demonstrate advanced jazz improvisation skill
  • Describe and apply intermediate jazz harmony knowledge and skills
  • Describe and apply intermediate music history and literature knowledge
  • In their professional life (after graduating) alumni apply skills, knowledge, and proficiency attained