The graduate program in musicology offers rigorous and broad
training in the intellectual history of the
field. Students benefit from collaboration with faculty and
students in ethnomusicology and composition, and also from
opportunities to take occasional seminars at other UC campuses.
The small size of our graduate program allows close relationships
between students and advisers. Ratings a few years ago by the
National Research Council identified us as one of the strongest
departments in the country.
Recent seminars have included such diverse topics as cover songs,
improvisational practices, opera and national identity, and the
music of Debussy. Completed dissertations have included studies
of music and culture in the 16th, 18th, 19th, and 20th centuries.
Many students have gone on to good jobs, including the University
of Texas at San Antonio, and recent hires at the University of
New Mexico, University of Alaska, California State University
Sacramento and Florida State University.
Musicology students must successfully pass an exam in two foreign
languages, one of which must be a language relevant to the
student’s fieldwork / research.
After the second quarter of the second year, students take
comprehensive examinations, and then draft their dissertation
proposal. At the end of the third year, they take a qualifying
examination. Upon successful completion, students advance to
Ordinarily, the master’s degree is completed as part of the Ph.D.
program. However, with the consent of the graduate adviser
and the dean of Graduate Studies, some work taken
elsewhere may be credited toward the degree. The limit
for such transfer credit is six units from
another institution or up to one-half of the unit
requirement if earned from another campus of the
University of California, provided the units were
not used in satisfaction of the requirements for
another degree. Students may transfer up to 12 units of
work from the Concurrent Courses program offered
by University Extension.
Candidates are required to present and successfully defend a
dissertation in a final public exit seminar. The doctoral
dissertation is to be an original and significant contribution to
the field of musical scholarship. The dissertation is supervised
by the faculty and approved by a committee named by the Office of
Graduate Studies. The final submission conforms to the
requirements described by the Office of Graduate Studies.
Length of study
Typical time to complete the Doctor of Philosophy degree is five
years. Candidates must be in residence for at least six quarters.