The Music Honors Track is designed to enhance the existing degree programs in music. It is not a stand-alone degree.

The Track is Ideal For:

  • Music majors of all level with an interest in music as a liberal art beyond its vocational aspects.



  • Four Semesters of Music Honors Seminars
  • One semester of research methods
  • Capstone project in the senior year - a culmination of the student's honors experience, in the form of a lecture, paper, musical score, report of research, recital, or performance


What projects have students completed in the past?

Students have pursued a variety of interests in their theses. Some thesis projects include: The Music of Ralph Towner (a lecture and presentation), The Application of the Alexander Technique to Instrumental Practice (lecture and presentation), Aspects of the Music of Sonny Rollins (lecture and presentation with transcriptions), The Modern Jazz Ballad (lecture and presentation), Analysis of Hindemth’s Tuba Sonata (a paper), The Process of Improvisation (paper), Ravel’s Le Tombeau de Couperin (a performance with analytic commentary), An Analysis of Samuel Barber’s Knoxville: Summer of 1915 (paper), and An Introduction to the World of Early Jazz Guitar (paper). Students have also explored the popular music of Brazil, transcribed piano pieces for an instrumental ensemble, and performed original compositions.

Who should apply?
Music majors of all levels with an interest in music as a liberal art beyond its vocational aspects.

Required Track Courses
1. MUSI 4960 Music Honors Research Methods (taken in sophomore or junior year) (2 credits) 
2. MUSI 4970 Music Honors Seminar (must be taken in four consecutive semesters) (1 credit)
3. MUSI 4980 Music Honors Project (must be taken at least once in senior year) (2 credits)

How do I enroll?
To enroll in the Music Honors Track, contact the Interim Director, Dr. Timothy Newman, to complete an initial interview. You must also complete the track application online following the interview process.

About the Track Director:

Dr. Timothy Newman is a Professor of Jazz Studies at William Paterson University. His teaching includes undergraduate and graduate classes in jazz history, transcription and analysis, scholarly and capstone writing and research, applied trombone, and jazz ensemble direction. Dr. Newman was a regular member of the Toshiko Akiyoshi Jazz Orchestra for over 20 years, and has recorded and appeared with many other iconic jazz musicians including: Slide Hampton, Buddy Morrow, Luis "Perico" Ortiz, Joe Magnarelli, Mel Torme, Scott Robinson, Mike Holober, Jack McDuff, The Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, The Mario Bauza Afro-Cuban Orchestra, Bill Mobley Jazz Orchestra, as well as the alternative rock band They Might Be Giants.. He is the producer of the William Paterson Summer Jazz Room Series and director of the William Paterson Summer Jazz Workshop.Newman holds a Ph.D. in Music Composition from New York University, an M.M. in Bass Trombone from the Manhattan School of Music, and an B.M. in Jazz Studies from William Paterson College.