MUS 474-Entrepreneurship in Music
and Senior Project

Music 474, Entrepreneurship in Music/Senior Project, is a culminating class in the Bachelor of Music degree program with a concentration in Commercial and Electronic Music or the Bachelor of Arts with the Music Industry Option. The purpose of the class is to assist students in career choices and to prepare documents and media that highlight the experience and abilities of the students. In addition to the assembly of a portfolio of representative work completed in previous semesters, a major capstone creative project is required. This senior project is determined early in the semester and is prepared under the supervision of WCU faculty. The class will meet weekly to share progress on assignments with faculty and other students. This is typically during the Friday principles hour, 1:25-2:15 PM. Punctually and attendance is a courtesy to others in the class. Please let me know if you are unable to attend class or will be arriving late. No quizzes or tests are required for the course. There is no textbook required for this course, but some reference materials and resources may be suggested to assist with projects. Time will be reserved during the last week of classes or exam week for exit interviews.

1. Identify professional aims and goals.
2. Complete a major project that best displays student skills and expertise.
3. Assemble biographical information and various representative media for promotional purposes.
4. Take steps to obtain either placement in a job or acceptance in a graduate program for further study

Course Requirements (due at the time of the exit interview):
1. Develop a portfolio of media and supporting documents. This will be presented as a hard copy (3-ring binder) and online in a personal website. Items to include: a sample cover letter, resume, CV (curriculum vitae), biography, business card, personal photo, a list of references with contact information, three letters of reference, and companion media on a USB drive, audio CD or video DVD containing examples of creative activities such as audio or video clips of performances, compositions, recordings, or other appropriate material. Copies of recital programs, award certificates, letters of commendations, or other evidence that support the claims in the resume and CV should be included.
2. Complete a senior project. The student must complete a senior project in an area of interest and expertise. Faculty will oversee the project but independent work by the student is expected.  Examples of projects include a mastered demo CD of a recording session (typically 3 songs), the performance and recording of original compositions (8-10 minutes), a videotaped lecture-recital involving music technology (30-45 minutes), a written paper or a video of a film or other multimedia presentation. The student must provide a CD or DVD of the completed material included with the portfolio notebook. The material will be posted (or linked) in the website. A project proposal form and project evaluation form are required. (See links below.)
3. Devise a three-to-five year plan for professional agenda. The plan should state professional aims and goals, and be included in the portfolio.
4. Apply to graduate school or professional work situation. This will be demonstrated by evidence of application correspondence, letters of acceptance, employment contract, etc.

The portfolio will be retained by the department and, with student permission, may be used for demonstration or promotional purposes. A checksheet that lists each of the required items for the portfolio is available to assist with managing the project assignments. (See links below.)

Exit Interview:
Near the end of the course, usually during the last week of classes or exam week, the student will schedule an appointment for an exit interview with music faculty.  During this interview the portfolio will be reviewed and the student's professional aims will be discussed. There is a music department survey form that may be completed at this time. A half-hour should be allowed for this appointment. This is usually a shared time with other students in the course and may take place during the final exam time.

Student Evaluation:
The student's grade will be based on the evaluation of the senior project, review of the portfolio and website, and the exit interview with the music faculty.

Grading System

A = 93-100
A- = 90-92
B+ = 88-89
B = 82-87
B-  = 80-81
C+ =78-79
C = 72-77
C- = 70-71
D+ = 68-69
D = 62-67
D- = 60-61
F = below 60
(For more information on grading, please refer to the WCU Undergraduate Catalog.)

Graded Elements

Portfolio 25%
Website 25%
Senior Project 40%
Job/School Applications 5% 
Exit Interview 5%

Senior Project Grading Rubric

A - Outstanding
B - Good
C - Acceptable
 D - Poor
F - Unacceptable
Effective, creative project.  Generally effective.  Adequate. Weak.  Unusable.
Demonstrates a thorough knowledge of the process and procedures involved in the project. Effective use of the assigned hardware and software. Media integration is seamless and editing is transparent. Demonstrates a clear understanding of the process and procedures involved in the project. Some minor flaws. Demonstrates a basic knowledge of the process and procedures involved in the project. Some obvious errors but OK to include in the portfolio. Process and procedures unclear. Editing draws attention to itself. Some serious errors. Lack of attention to detail. Revisions are needed for portfolio inclusion. Serious or persistent errors.  Unable to demonstrate the function of the tools or the process and procedures of the project. Did not complete. Unsuitable for portfolio

Class Schedule:
Week 1 - Review syllabus and course requirements.
Week 2 - The senior project proposal form is due. Class discussion of projects and sessions/performance dates are scheduled.
Week 3 - Web site development is discussed and demonstrated. Secure a domain name and choose a hosting site.
Week 4 - The sample cover letter and resume are due. Please provide copies for faculty and other students for review in class. Web site development is continued as needed incorporating promotional materials as they are developed.
Week 5 - The biography is due. Several lengths are suggested (50 word, 150 word, 300 word). Please provide copies for faculty and other students for review in class.
Week 6 - The business card is due. Free business card templates are available online. The card information and design must be approved before mass duplication is considered. Please provide copies for faculty and other students for review in class.
Week 7 - The personal digital photo is due. We will schedule a photo session in the studio including a group shot.
Week 8 - The career plan is due.
Week 9 - Review of other projects to include in the portfolio and website. Ex: Soundcloud, YouTube or vimeo files and social media sites.
Week 10 - Discuss progress report on senior projects, internship or job search, and post baccalaureate application process with other class members.
Week 11 - Letters of recommendation are due. Share website development with class members
Week 12 - CV is due. The CV should include specifics of musical experience outlined in the resume. This may include solo recitals or performances, repertoire list, compositions completed, recording projects produced, etc. Please provide copies for faculty and other students for review in class.
Week 13 - Senior project is due.
Week 14 - Completed portfolio is due. Public release of personal website.
Week 15 - Exit Interview. Portfolio is reviewed with faculty.

The CourseEval web evaluation links will be active during the last month of classes. Please take advantage of this opportunity to give us your feedback on the class.

Academic Honesty Policy:
Western Carolina University, a community of scholarship, is also a community of honor. Faculty, staff, administrators, and students work together to achieve the highest standards of honesty and integrity. Academic dishonesty is a serious offense at WCU because it threatens the quality of scholarship and defrauds those who depend on knowledge and integrity. Academic dishonesty includes the following:
A. Cheating. Intentionally using or attempting to use unauthorized materials, information, or study aids in any academic exercise.
B. Fabrication. Intentional falsification or invention of information or citation in an academic exercise.
C. Plagiarism. Intentionally or knowingly representing the words or ideas of someone else as one’s own in an academic exercise.
D. Facilitation of Academic Dishonesty. Intentionally or knowingly helping or attempting to help someone else to commit an act of academic dishonesty, such as knowingly allowing another to copy information during an examination or other academic exercise.
For specific information on procedures for cases involving allegations of academic dishonesty, see relevant sections in the Students Handbook and the Student Success website under Student Community Ethics.

Office of Disability Services:
Accommodations for Students with Disabilities: Western Carolina University is committed to providing equal educational opportunities for students with documented disabilities and/or medical conditions.  Students who require reasonable accommodations must identify themselves as having a disability and/or medical condition and provide current diagnostic documentation to the Office of Disability Services.  All information is confidential.  Please contact the Office of Disability Services at (828) 227-3886 or come by Suite 135 Killian Annex for an appointment.

Student Support Services:
Student Support Services provides support to students who are either first-generation, low-income or those who have disclosed a disability with: academic advising, mentoring, one-on-one tutorial support, and workshops focused on career, financial aid and graduate school preparation. You may contact SSS at (828) 227-7127 or email for more information. SSS is located in the Killian Annex, room 138.

Writing and Learning Common (WaLC):
Electronic format (with hyperlinks):
The Writing and Learning Commons (WaLC), located in BELK 207, provides free small-group course tutoring, one-on-one writing tutoring and academic skills consultations, and online writing and learning resources for all students.  All tutoring sessions take place in the WaLC or in designated classrooms on campus. To schedule tutoring appointments, log in to TutorTrac from the WaLC homepage ( or call 828-227-2274. Distance students and students taking classes at Biltmore Park are encouraged to use Smarthinking and the WaLC’s online resources. Students may also take advantage of writing tutoring offered at the Biltmore Park campus on certain days of the week; call 828-227-2274 or log in to TutorTrac and select “Biltmore Park Writing Tutoring” for availabilities.

Academic Calendar: includes dates for all breaks, university closures, final exams, etc.  The academic calendar can be found at:


I have read the syllabus for MUS 474 and am aware of the requirements and policies for this course.

Please print your complete name _____________________________________________ ID # ____________________

Sign ___________________________________________________________________ Date ____________________

Please return the signed form during the first week of class.