PhD Music Theory and History

The following music theory and history requirements must be completed before the student is admitted to candidacy. Note that these are courses beyond the bachelor's degree. Similar graduate courses taken at another accredited institution may fulfill some of these requirements if the student is able to demonstrate knowledge or skill approximately equivalent to that expected of students who have completed the corresponding courses below:

Before being admitted into this program, the student is expected to demonstrate, through testing and interviews with members of the faculty, a level of competence equivalent to undergraduate coursework in the following areas:

  1. The principal periods of Western music history, including important composers and other historical figures, the history and development of standard musical genres, and representative musical works.
  2. Musical performance (on the student's principal instrument or voice).
  3. Harmony and voice leading; conventions of part writing and figured bass.
  4. Aural skills, including sight singing; keyboard facility.
  5. Sixteenth- and eighteenth-century counterpoint.
  6. Standard formal designs of the common practice period.
  7. Twentieth-century music literature and compositional techniques.
  8. Basic principles of score reading, instrumentation and orchestration.
  9. Research and bibliographic skills sufficient for effective writing in the discipline.

A student with a limited background in one or more of these areas may be admitted to the program with the understanding that appropriate undergraduate course work will be completed as soon as possible.

Courses Credits
Required Courses (36 Credits)
Research Procedures Music 5391 Procedures in Historical Research 3
Music 5302 Analytic Techniques 3
Music 5354 Advanced Analysis 3
Music 5359 History of Theory 3
Music 5348 Schenkerian Theory and Analysis 3
Music 5379 Atonal Theory and Analysis 3
Music 5353 Seminar in Music Theory 3
Music 6411, 6412, or 6413: Four Seminars in Music History, chosen from these course numbers. At least one seminar must focus on a pre-eighteenth century topic, and at least two on post-seventeenth century topics. 12
Music 5319 Notation and Performance Practice 3
Music 6491 Advanced Research Procedures in Musicology 3
Directed Electives Courses chosen by the student in consultation with the Advisory Committee, and guided by the student's individual interests and research area. These courses may not be taken until the student is within 6 credits of completing the list of required courses above.
minimum 6
Other Requirements 1. Reading proficiency in one language (normally German).
2. In addition, more language study (in the same or a different language) or 6 credits in a supporting area may be required by the Advisory Committee, depending on the student's proposed area of research. This work, if required, may not be applied to the Directed Elective credits described above.
3. Practical or applied musical skill: significant experience in performance, conducting, composition or musical technology.
4. Teaching ability: successful experience in academic or applied teaching.
5. Scholarly activity: evidence of success through publications or public presentations.
6. Attendance and participation in the Music History and Theory Colloquium during each semester of residence.Competence in these areas will be evaluated by the student's Advisory Committee.
Total Course Credits (minimum, excluding any credits taken under "Other Requirements" described above) 45
Research Credits Grad 6950
May be taken before or after admission to candidacy
Total Credits 60