The Department of Music offers programs of study leading to the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Music and the Master of Arts (AM) in Music, with emphasis in either musicology or music theory. Each graduate program combines a course of advanced studies in one area of music studies with supporting studies in related fields of music. The number of graduate students admitted each year is small so that each student is assured individual attention. There are traditionally close rapports and mutually supportive interactions among graduate students in all areas of study.
The AM and PhD programs in musicology offer concentrations in historical musicology and ethnomusicology. Department faculty interests cover all eras of European art music, American popular musics, film and theatre music, jazz, and African and African diasporic musics. Methodological approaches cover a range of critical perspectives, placing music within its cultural and historical contexts and developing the student's ability to think and write about music and music-making. Intensive study in music theory is a required component of the programs, and diverse opportunities for performance are offered.
The AM and PhD programs in music theory focus on the creative analysis and critical examination of assumptions about music and musical discourse. The graduate program prepares students to undertake research in musical analysis and in the language and methodology of music theory. Preparation includes guiding each student in developing their own modes of thought and expression. Faculty interests include improvisation and intermedia, texture and form, music cognition and computational modeling, composition, Schenker, and the interplay of text and music in German art song.