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This is general information for all applicants. For information specific to your area of study, please click the links to the left. If you have substantive questions after reading through this information, please send your inquiry to: Music.GradAdmissions@stonybrook.edu .
Applicants are required to fill out the application here: https://graduateadmissions.stonybrook.edu/apply/
The application fee is $100 and is non-refundable.
The application deadlines for Fall 2024 admissions are:
For MM, DMA and MA or PhD in Music (Composition): December 10, 2023.
For MA and PhD in Music (Critical Music Studies): January 10, 2024
The Music Department does not have Spring admissions.
- Required application materials depend on the degree and area for which you are applying. On the left side of this page, please click on the area of your interest (Composition, Critical Music Studies or Performance), and then click on Apply. That page will list the required application items for the master and doctoral applications for those areas.
Applicants who wish to apply for more than one degree program (such as for a DMA and a PhD) must apply separately for each degree program and must be admitted by each program.
Applicants who wish to apply for more than one performance area (such as applying for a DMA in Violin and for a DMA in Viola) need to send only one application, but you should indicate on the application that you wish to apply for more than one area of specialization. You would be required to audition for both areas.
- Please contact email@example.com. The staff in the Graduate School will work with Slate to resolve the issue.
All supporting documents to be submitted by the applicant MUST be uploaded to your application.
For further details on transcripts, please see "How do I submit transcripts?" below.
Official transcripts are required from each institution from which you received a degree. If you took coursework relevant to your proposed course of study at an institution from which you did not receive a degree, please provide an unofficial transcript from that institution.
Submission of Transcripts (Application Stage)
- Upload transcripts to your application. It may be unofficial at this stage.
- Please upload each transcript as a single document (do not upload each page of a transcript as a separate document).
Submission of Transcripts (Admission Stage)
- If you are offered admission, you will be required to provide official transcripts from institutions from which you received a degree. The sooner you do this, the easier your registration will be.
- Official transcripts may either be mailed in hard copy OR sent as an electronic transcript to the Graduate School. Please note the requirements below:
- Electronic Transcripts: must be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org .IMPORTANT: to be considered official, electronic transcripts must be sent directly from the degree-granting institution to Stony Brook University’s Graduate School.
- Hard Copy Transcripts: Sealed hard copies must be sent from the institution directly to the Stony Brook University Graduate School (address is below). IMPORTANT: Photocopies or scans are NOT official. If you have your school(s) send your hard copy official transcripts to you, do NOT open the envelopes.
Stony Brook University
2401 Computer Science Building
Stony Brook, NY 11794-4433
All applicants are required to pay the application fee. Exceptions include:
Students who are U.S. citizens and have current documentation from a financial aid administrator of an appropriate college or university official substantiating that they are currently enrolled and that the payment of the application would create a financial hardship (complete financial information for the current academic year must be provided, including total cost of education and amount and types of financial aid received). To qualify, applicants must request a waiver from the Graduate School Admissions Office before they submit their application for admission, and should include the necessary documentation listed above.
Students who have a fellowship/scholarship through McNair, Project 1000, SEEK, and AGEP. To qualify, applicants must have a letter or e-mail from the appropriate agency sent to the Graduate School Admissions Office.
Appropriate supporting documentation for the application fee waiver can be emailed to email@example.com. Once the Graduate School Admissions Office receives the appropriate documents we will waive the fee for the applicant so they may submit their on-line application without paying. Application fees cannot be refunded so please do not submit and pay the fee if you are requesting a waiver.
For more information, please visit https://www.stonybrook.edu/sb/graduatebulletin/current/admissions/special/waiver.php
The GRE will not be required for any applicant for Fall 2024 admissions.
Applicants whose native language is not English who have received/will receive a degree from an English-speaking institution will not have to submit a TOEFL score (or approved equivalent) for the purposes of admission.
Applicants who only have received/will receive an Artist’s Diploma or Advanced Graduate Certificate in an English-speaking institution will be required to provide a TOEFL score (or approved equivalent) for the purposes of admission.
Applicants whose native language is not English and have not received/will not have received a degree from an English-speaking institution will be required to provide a passing TOEFL (or approved equivalent- see below for acceptable tests) score in order to be admitted. For any test, the most recent scores are counted, and the test must not be more than two years old at the time of application (this means that tests taken prior to January 2022 cannot be considered for Fall 2024 admissions).
Tests Accepted: Stony Brook University accepts either TOEFL or IELTS scores. For Fall 2024, Stony Brook University is also accepting Duolingo, TOEFL IBT Special Home Edition and IELTS Indicator. Currently, Stony Brook University does NOT accept TOEFL My Best Score.
Reporting of Scores:
- For TOEFL or TOEFL IBT Special Home Edition, have ETS send scores to Stony Brook University using code 2548. Only electronic transmission of scores from ETS to Stony Brook University is considered official for TOEFL scores – copies of your results are not acceptable.
- For IELTS, have the organization mail an official score report to the Music department.
- For IELTS Indicator, email the score results you receive to the Graduate School at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- For Duolingo scores, email the score results you receive to the Graduate School at email@example.com.
Minimum score requirements are as follows:
- TOEFL or TOEFL IBT Special Home Edition: 80 for Masters applicants; 90 for Doctoral applicants
- IELTS or IELTS Indicator: An overall score of 6.5 with no subsection below 6
- Duolingo: 105 for Masters applicants; 110 for Doctoral applicants
All students with a TA/GA stipend whose native language is not English and who have not received/will not have received a degree from an English-speaking institution must demonstrate a sufficient level of English-speaking proficiency and may be required to take English courses based on these measures. Proficiency is determined by the speak subsection score. For TOEFL/TOEFL IBT Special Home Edition and IELTS/IELTS Indicator speak subsection scores, please see the chart below:
TOEFL iBT Speak
7 or higher
Eligible to TA
Eligible to TA
Eligible to run recitation and lab sessions and/or grade
Not eligible to TA
Duolingo scores will be assessed by Stony Brook University’s Linguistics department for placement into OAE courses for doctoral students and masters students who were given a TA or GA.
Please see the Graduate School Website for further information:
If you are unable to schedule a test that will allow scores to be received by the University by the application deadline, please make sure that you schedule a test so that the scores are received no later than the middle of December. If your score is not received on time, it could jeopardize your admission to the program.
NOTE: MM or DMA applicants should NOT wait for pre-screen or audition results before taking the TOEFL or IELTS test (if applicable) or submitting test scores. You will go to your audition, and the performance faculty makes their recommendations for admission. After this is done, the faculty reviews the files for academic admissibility - to determine if you meet the academic requirements for admission to the program. It is only after both of these processes are concluded that you would receive any information regarding the results of your admission.
Please make sure you provide ETS with the proper code (2548 for Stony Brook University) so that the university will receive your scores electronically. The sheer volume of applicants and inquiries we receive at this time of year does not permit us to individually acknowledge every test score received. We ask that you please do not contact and ask us if we received your scores.
For all applicants, please note: All written work submitted to support your application must be your own. In particular, the use of generative AI to generate entire sentences and paragraphs is not permitted and may be disqualifying.
Submit one original paper, in English, in music research, analysis, or criticism that demonstrate your ability to carry out scholarly work in music. The paper, typically generated in prior course work, should be at least ten pages in length and demonstrate knowledge of proper bibliographic citation practices (your paper must contain a bibliography).
Submit two original papers, in English, in music research, analysis, or criticism that demonstrate your ability to carry out scholarly work in music. The papers, typically generated in prior course work, should be at least ten pages in length and demonstrate knowledge of proper bibliographic citation practices (each paper must contain a bibliography).
History/Theory and Ethnomusicology Program Applicants (MA and PhD applicants)
Submit 2-3 original papers in music research, analysis or criticism. In addition to these, you may submit papers on other subjects if you think that they support some aspect of your application for admission. Please limit your essays to those that exemplify your best work.
Composition Applicants (MA and PhD applicants)
Please upload one original paper that demonstrates your ability to write effectively about music and sound. The paper, typically generated in prior coursework, should be at least 2500 words, not including the bibliography, and demonstrate familiarity with conventional citation practices.
Everyone who applies is automatically considered for financial assistance from the Music Department, usually in the form of a Teaching Assistantship/Tuition Scholarship. There are no special forms to fill out for Departmental support. US Citizens and Permanent Residents are also eligible for other forms of financial aid, which are applied for via the FAFSA form. Most NY residents are also eligible for TAP.
Regarding Graduate Council Fellowships and Turner Fellowships – if you wish to be considered for either of these financial opportunities, you MUST have your application completed by the application deadline. Students wishing to be considered for these awards must be U.S. Citizens or Permanent Residents, and Turner Fellows must self-identify as either African-American, Native American, or Hispanic on their application.
Applicants to the MM or DMA program in Bassoon, Clarinet, Flute, Jazz, Violin and Voice are required to submit pre-screen video recordings with decent audio quality, which you would upload to your application. Repertoire requirements can be found on the Auditions page.
Applicants who were required to submit a pre-screen recording will be notified by email in early January with the result.
Please see the Auditions Page for dates of each studio's auditions. Each studio contacts applicants directly to set up the date and time of their auditions.
If the studio to which you are applying requires pre-screening videos or recordings, they should be uploaded to your current application.
Repertoire requirements can be found on the Auditions page. That page also includes the dates of the auditions.
Some studios request that you bring an accompanist to the audition. If you have trouble arranging for a pianist to come to your audition, the studio teacher or TA will have information about possible accompanists, their fees, and when they might be available. Please contact the person who is arranging your audition to ask whether they can supply you with the names and contact information for pianists who might be available on the day of your audition.
All DMA auditions are expected to be live. MM applicants who live more than 250 miles from New York City may submit a recorded audition through the Slate application.
Please see the Auditions page for more information.
If the studio to which you are applying requires pre-screening videos or recordings, they should be uploaded to your current Slate application.
This is actually a very complex decision process. The Department looks for students who will benefit from the program, and for students who will contribute to the musical and academic climates at Stony Brook. For performers, it is a two-step process; first, you have your audition to determine admissibility on a performance basis, and then faculty reviews your file for academic admissibility.
Offer letters for the Performance programs are generally sent out in late March. Offer letters for Composition and the Critical Music Studies programs are sent out in mid-to late-February.
Results are only given in writing. Please do not call for your result.