Graduate Bulletin

Spring 2018

Admission to the M.A./Ph.D. Programs at the Masters Level in Music History and Theory or Composition

The following are required for admission to the Graduate program in Music History and Theory, and in Composition leading to an M.A. and/or Ph.D. degree, in addition to the Graduate School requirements:

A. A bachelor’s degree from a recognized institution.

B. Official transcripts of undergraduate records.

C. A minimum average of B in undergraduate music courses.

D. Three letters of recommendation from persons familiar with the student’s work.

E. Examples of undergraduate work:

1. For history and theory applicants, essays in music research, analysis, theory, or criticism.

2. For composition applicants, musical scores and recordings.

F. Results of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test.

G. Acceptance by both the Department of Music and the Graduate School.

Applicants are invited to submit any other evidence of their abilities in support of their application for admission, such as recordings of music performances or the score on the GRE Area Test in music.

All students entering the M.A. program will be examined in the following areas:

1. Ear training

2. Basic keyboard skills

3. The harmonization of a chorale in four voices (for composition students only).

4. The composition of a passage in free two-part counterpoint in either 16th-century or 18th-century style (required only for composition students only)

5. The history of music (for history and theory students only).

6. An Exam in the analysis of music (advisory requirement for history-theory students only).

The examinations in harmony and counterpoint for composition students and the examination in music analysis for students in the music history and theory program will be sent to students in mid-summer after they have been admitted in the spring. The other examinations will be given in the week before the beginning of classes. 

Students who are found deficient in any of the above areas will be required to take appropriate courses in the first year of study to remedy the deficiencies.

 

Admission to the M.M./D.M.A. Program at the Master's Level

The following are required for admission to the M.M. Program in Performance, in addition to the requirements of the Graduate School:

A. A bachelor’s degree from a recognized institution.

B. Official transcripts of undergraduate records.

C. An audition in the major field of performance. Students residing at a distance from the University may gain provisional acceptance by sending a recorded audition. Audition dates, usually designated for February, are announced by the Department mid-fall. These dates, as well as specific requirements for auditions, are posted at the Departmental website.  

D. Letters of recommendation from the former principal teacher and at least two other persons familiar with the student’s work.

E. While acceptance into the program is based primarily upon excellence in performance, the program contains a significant academic component. Applicants to the DMA program are therefore required to submit two examples of their work in music history or music theory, such as papers completed as coursework in either area.

F. Acceptance by both the Department of Music and the Graduate School.

Entering students will be examined in ear training and foreign languages (voice and harpsichord only) (for students with prior foreign language experience) during the week before the beginning of classes, and will be placed in the appropriate courses.

 

Admission to the Ph.D. Programs in Music History and Theory or Composition

See Admission to the M.A./Ph.D. Program, above. In addition, a master’s degree, usually in the pertinent area of competence, is required. As evidence of ability to carry on doctoral work in the area of specialization, applicants should submit examples of recent work as follows:

1. For composition: recordings and scores

2. For history and theory: essays that demonstrate a breadth of knowledge in two or more of the following areas: music history, theory analysis, or criticism.

Applicants who plan to include study in performance as a part of their degree program should follow the audition procedure outlined under Admission to the D.M.A. Program, above. Students who intend to work in a secondary area of specialization must demonstrate to the pertinent faculty competence commensurate with a master’s degree at a distinguished level in that area.

Students who do not possess the Master of Arts degree in music from Stony Brook will be asked to demonstrate achievement commensurate with that degree by the end of the first year of study by taking the relevant M.A. comprehensive examinations.

Entering students who have not already done so must successfully complete the appropriate advisory examinations described under Admission to the M.A./Ph.D. Program. Any remedial work must be completed by the end of the first year of study.

Although most students will move directly from the Masters to the Doctoral level of the M.A./Ph.D. program, successful completion of the Stony Brook M.A. degree does not guarantee acceptance into the Ph.D.-level program. Students wishing to continue from the masters to the doctorate degree must indicate their intention to do so, in a formal letter, to reach the Graduate Program Coordinator by 15 December for fall admission. This should be accompanied by two letters of recommendation from Stony Brook faculty. In order to demonstrate the ability to continue on at the doctoral level, students must submit appropriate examples of work: Masters papers for History and Theory; the Master's composition portfolio for Composition. Students may also elect to finish with the M.A. degree.

 

Admission to the D.M.A. Program

See Admission to the M.M./D.M.A. Program, above. In addition, a master’s degree, usually in the pertinent area of performance, is required. Applicants must audition in person before a faculty committee. Audition dates, usually designated for February, are announced by the Department mid-fall. These dates, as well as specific requirements for auditions, are posted at the Departmental Web site.

Students who do not possess a Master of Music degree from Stony Brook must demonstrate a level of achievement in ear training, and demonstrate preparation in music history and theory, commensurate with the M.M. requirements. Voice students who do not possess a Master of Music degree from Stony Brook must also satisfy the piano proficiency and foreign language requirements of the Stony Brook M.M. degree in voice. Harpsichord students who do not have a Stony Brook M.M. must also satisfy the foreign language requirement of the Stony Brook M.M in harpsichord.

Applicants who plan to include a secondary area of specialization in composition, history, or theory within their D.M.A. program must submit examples of work in the proposed secondary area and must demonstrate to the pertinent faculty competence commensurate with a master’s degree at a distinguished level in that area. Students who are accepted in a secondary area of specialization must pass the appropriate advisory examinations described under Admission to the M.A. Program. Any remedial work must be completed by the end of the first year of study.

Although most students will move directly from the Masters to the Doctoral level of the M.M./D.M.A. program, successful completion of the Stony Brook M.M. degree does not guarantee acceptance into the D.M.A.-level program. Students wishing to continue from the masters to the doctorate degree must indicate their intention to do so, in a formal letter, to reach the Graduate Program Coordinator by 15 December for fall admission. This should be accompanied by two letters of recommendation from Stony Brook faculty. In order to demonstrate the ability to continue at the doctoral level, students must play an audition. Students may also elect to finish with the M.M. degree.