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About the Commercial Music Program

Cedar Valley offered the first commercial music and audio engineering program in Texas when the college opened in 1977. The plan was to prepare students to work in the music industry in two years. Students would focus on developing musicianship as well as technical skills.

More than 30 years later, Cedar Valley Commercial Music graduates perform and are employed around the world. They are professional artists, composers and arrangers, studio and live sound engineers, radio and television staff and music retailers and marketers. Community colleges across Texas have replicated our program.

Program instructors think ours is the finest program in Texas. So do the more than 160 students who enroll in the program each semester.

Four studios are available. They are used for instruction, lab work and various stages of a recording project. All have Mac Pro Dual Quad Core computers and industry standard Avid Pro Tools recording and editing software. See more about the equipment in our Recording Technology studios and labs.

In our studios, students can:

  • Learn the basics of music, acoustics and electronics
  • Engineer studio sessions
  • Produce live sound for concerts
  • Perform in ensembles
  • Produce commercials and jingles
  • Learn about the business of music and recording

How to Get Started

To get started in the Commercial Music program, complete the admissions process at Cedar Valley College. When you meet with an academic advisor, mention your interest in the program so he or she can help you determine which courses you should take.

If you are planning to earn an associate degree or certificate, please note that you must complete 25 percent of your degree requirements at the college awarding the degree.


Dallas County residents pay $177 per three-hour class — that is $59 per credit hour, or just $708 for a full-semester load of 12 credit hours.

Compare that to what you’d pay elsewhere! See tuition rates for tuition according to your place of residency.

photo of the Cedar Valley College music studio

Rising Star Program

If you are a Dallas County high school graduating senior, you may qualify for Rising Star funds to help pay for this program. The Rising Star program offers academic support services and up to $4,000 for tuition and books, if you have established financial need.​​

Courses Offered (Curriculum)

See courses required for Commercial Music degrees and certificates.

Accreditation and Affiliations

The colleges of Dallas County Community College District — Brookhaven, Cedar Valley, Eastfield, El Centro, Mountain View, North Lake and Richland — are individually accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. The official statement of accreditation for each college is published on the college’s accreditation Web page.

Related Programs

Commercial Music is a technical program unique to Cedar Valley College in the Dallas County Community College District. However, each of our other six colleges has a music department offering credit classes:

Other Degree and Certificate Options

The colleges of DCCCD offer nearly 350 career and technical degrees and certificates, plus more than 50 academic degrees. For more information, see a chart of degree plans by college or visit the credit programs home page.

Developing Skills for Success

Cedar Valley’s program offers numerous opportunities for students to perform and to participate in musical production and recording technology, including:

Faculty Profiles

Our Commercial Music faculty members are all professional musicians. They have a wealth of performing experience in addition to their credentials as educators, so they have an intimate working knowledge of the music world.

Our instructors work with you one-on-one, encouraging you and helping you to succeed in school and in your career. See profiles of some of our Commercial Music faculty.

Transfer Information

The Commercial Music program is designed for direct entry into the workforce. However, if you are interested in earning a degree at a four-year institution, please visit the Transfer Services website for guidance on the transfer process.

Want to Know More?

Contact Us

If you have questions about the Commercial Music program that aren’t answered on our website, please feel free to contact us.