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School of Fine ArtsMusic Department

Advising & Program Administration

Graduate programs in music are administered jointly by the Music Department and the Graduate School. Basic requirements for admission, continuation in a program, and graduation are set by the Graduate School and its legislative body, the Graduate Faculty Council, whereas requirements for specific degree programs are determined at the departmental level. Music Department policies and curricula are established by vote of the faculty and administered by the Director of Graduate Studies and the Graduate Studies Committee. Requirements for individual students are further stipulated by the student’s Major Advisor and Advisory Committee. The flow chart below illustrates the administrative levels of graduate programs.

Music Faculty Grad. Studies Committee Advisory Committee
Graduate School Student
Music Dept. Head Director of Grad. Studies Major Advisor

As an example of the way in which requirements are established, consider the foreign language requirement for a D.M.A. student in instrumental performance: the Graduate School Catalog states that the student is required to have at least one foreign language or at least six credits of advanced work in a supporting area of study; the Music Faculty, however, has voted that only a foreign language is acceptable for this degree program; and the Major Advisor may further qualify the requirement by specifying the particular language in which the student must be proficient, based on the student’s course of study and research interests.

Each student is assigned a Major Advisor at the time of admission. The Major Advisor is responsible for working with the student to formulate a course of study that meets the requirements for the degree. The Major Advisor also monitors the student’s progress throughout the course of study, assists in identifying Associate Advisors (a minimum of two) to fill out the student’s Advisory Committee, and helps make arrangements for completion of the final degree requirements (scheduling the general or final examination, thesis or dissertation defense, etc.).

Most matters related to graduate study can be addressed at the departmental level. If you have questions or concerns about any aspect of degree requirements, standards or policies, you should direct them to your Major Advisor or to the Director of Graduate Studies, who may also consult the Associate Advisors or the Graduate Studies Committee.