Master of Music

The Master of Music is specifically designed to develop the musician, scholar, therapist, or educator for a professional career in music. This degree is offered with tracks in the following areas:

  • Performance
  • Collaborative Piano/Chamber Music
  • Conducting
  • Composition
  • Musicology
  • Music Therapy

Students seeking admission to the graduate program in music must submit all documents to the Office of Graduate Admissions. In addition, the following are required:

  1. Graduate Application
  2. Application fee
  3. Students must complete the School of Music admission requirements:
    • Submit School of Music application form
    • Submit three letters of recommendation
    • Complete an audition and/or interview (see individual tracks for specific requirements)
  4. Prospective students must submit two writing samples, including a Personal Statement and a scholarly writing sample. In the Personal Statement, explain your interest in pursuing graduate studies in your area of specialty and your career plans/goals following graduate school. The second writing sample should represent your best scholarly writing about music, such as a research paper from a previous music theory or music history course or, for music therapy candidates, a professional document from a work setting. This scholarly writing sample should demonstrate your ability to utilize and appropriately cite reputable references and should showcase your capacity to synthesize information from various sources and create new interpretations of that information. Both samples will be assessed for content, as well as the mechanics of your writing, including sentence structure, word choice, sentence and paragraph length, punctuation, and spelling. For a final admissions decision, writing samples do not constitute the sole criterion for consideration of the applicant, nor do writing samples constitute the primary criterion to end consideration of an applicant. The applicant’s writing samples will be compared with those of other applicants from similar socioeconomic backgrounds to the extent that those backgrounds can be properly determined and identified by the School of Music’s admissions process.
  5. Transcripts from all previous college level academic work are required and should be submitted to the Office of Graduate Studies. An undergraduate/Baccalaureate degree from a NASM-accredited institution or equivalent international degree in music is required.
  6. International students must submit an official TOEFL score of at least 213 on the computer-based exam, or at least 550 on the paper-based exam.

All students pursuing Master of Music graduate degree programs must take and satisfy the Graduate Music Diagnostic Exam, administered by the SHSU music faculty, prior to the first semester of residence. The exam includes questions concerning music history, music theory, and if required, foreign language and diction (Vocal Performance, Choral Conducting, and Collaborative Piano/Chamber Music only). The purpose of the Graduate Music Diagnostic Exam is to evaluate each student’s general musical knowledge and identify deficiencies.  Students deficient in any area will be required to retake and pass the Diagnostic Exam before they can schedule their M.M. comprehensive oral examination. Students should visit School of Music for specific information and dates.

  • Successful completion of a comprehensive oral examination is required for graduation. This exam, which is administered by a committee of three music faculty, is given during the final semester. Oral examination committees are appointed by the Graduate Advisor in consultation with the Graduate Committee and student. Students must be enrolled the semester in which they take comprehensive examinations.
  • All graduate music students must complete the core hours and the specific track hours to meet the required minimum of 30 hours beyond the undergraduate degree.
Master of Music Core (9 hours)
MUSI 5330Analytical Techniques3
MUSI 6398Research Techniques3
MUSI 5XXXMusic History3
Select one of the following Music History courses (MUSI 5XXX):3
Seminar In Baroque Music
Seminar In Classical Music
Sem In Nineteenth-Century Mus
Sem In Twentieth-Century Mus
Total Hours9

Note: All degrees require a final graduate recital, project, or thesis.

Successful completion of a comprehensive oral or written examination is required for graduation. This exam, which is administered by a committee of three music faculty, is administered during the final semester. Oral/written examination committees are appointed by the Graduate Advisor in consultation with the Graduate Committee and the student. Additional comprehensive examination information is located in Graduate Degree Requirements section of the SHSU Graduate Catalog. 

Specific Track Requirements

Instrumental Performance Track
Courses
XXXX 5201Ind Performances-XXXX (Applied Lessons in Instrument)8
MUEN 5112Graduate Ensemble2
MUSI 6181Recital I1
MUSI 5388Seminar In Literature3
MUSI 5398Adv Study in Appl Discipline3
Electives
Select one of the following:3
Pedagogy Of Theory
Score Reading
MUSI 5XXX
Music History
Other course with advisor approval
Performance Elective
Select one of the following:1
Recital II
XXXX 5201
Ind Performances-XXXX (Applied Lessons in Instrument)
Other course with advisor approval
Total Hours21

Students seeking admission to the Instrumental Performance track must pass an entrance audition administered by the appropriate faculty member, or group of faculty members, in the area of study.  Students should contact the major professor in their area of interest for the appropriate level of repertoire required.

Vocal Performance Track
Courses
MUEN 5112Graduate Ensemble2
MUSI 6181Recital I1
MUSI 5388Seminar In Literature3
MUSI 5398Adv Study in Appl Discipline3
VOIC 5201Ind Performances-Voice8
Electives
Select one of the following:3
Pedagogy Of Theory
Score Reading
MUSI 5XXX
Music History
Other course with advisor approval
Performance Elective
Select one of the following:1
Chamber Music
Recital II
Other course with advisor approval
Total Hours21

Students seeking admission to the Vocal Performance track must pass an entrance audition administered by the appropriate faculty in the area of study. Audition requirements include the following memorized repertoire: 

  • an operatic aria
  • an oratorio aria
  • a French, German, Italian and English art song

Students interested in the Vocal Performance track are required to pass the foreign language and diction portion of the Graduate Diagnostic Exam. Students must show competence in languages including English, French, German and Italian. Students deficient in either area will be required to take the appropriate undergraduate courses.

Piano Performance Track
Courses
MUEN 5110Accompanying Seminar2
MUSI 5388Seminar In Literature3
MUSI 5398Adv Study in Appl Discipline3
MUSI 6181Recital I1
MUSI 6182Recital II1
PIAN 5201Ind Performances-Piano8
Electives
Select one of the following:3
Pedagogy Of Theory
Score Reading
MUSI 5XXX
Music History
Other course with advisor approval
Total Hours21

Students seeking admission to the Piano Performance track must pass an entrance audition administered by the appropriate faculty member, or group of faculty members, in the area of study. Audition requirements include:

  • a complete sonata by Haydn, or Mozart (excluding K. 545), or Beethoven (excluding Op. 49)
  • two additional piano works from contrasting musical styles
  • major/harmonic minor scales
  • sight-reading
Collaborative Piano/Chamber Music Track
MUEN 5110Accompanying Seminar4
MUEN 5118Chamber Music2
MUSI 6181Recital I 11
MUSI 6182Recital II 11
MUSI 6183Recital III 11
MUSI 5388Seminar In Literature3
PIAN 5201Ind Performances-Piano8
Elective with advisor approval1
Total Hours21

Students seeking admission to the Collaborative Piano/Chamber Music track must pass an entrance audition administered by the appropriate faculty member, or group of faculty members, in the area of study. Audition requirements include:

  • a complete instrumental sonata from the standard repertoire
  • a set of three songs of standard art song literature
  • a solo piano work of candidate’s choice
  • major/harmonic minor scales
  • sight-reading

Students interested in the Collaborative Piano/Chamber Music track are required to pass the foreign language and diction portion of the Graduate Diagnostic Exam. Students deficient in either area will be required to take the appropriate undergraduate courses.

Conducting Track
Courses
COND 5001Applied Conducting8
MUEN 5112Graduate Ensemble2
MUSI 5388Seminar In Literature3
MUSI 5398Adv Study in Appl Discipline3
MUSI 6181Recital I1
Electives
Select one of the following:3
Pedagogy Of Theory
Score Reading
MUSI 5XXX
Music History
Other course with advisor approval
Performance Elective
Select one of the following:1
Recital II
XXXX 5201
Applied lessons
Other course with advisor approval
Total Hours21

Students seeking admission to the Conducting Track (both Choral and Instrumental) must complete an interview and submit a conducting video of a recent concert and/or rehearsal, and audition on their primary instrument/voice. Those students with piano skills will be given preference for admission to the Choral Conducting track.

Students interested in the Choral Conducting track are required to pass the foreign language and diction portion of the Graduate Diagnostic Exam. Students deficient in either area will be required to take the appropriate undergraduate courses.

Composition Track
Courses
COMP 5201Applied Composition4
COMP 5202Applied Composition Large Ens4
MUEN 5112Graduate Ensemble2
MUSI 5363Pedagogy Of Theory3
MUSI 5367Score Reading3
MUSI 6181Recital I1
Electives
Select one of the following:4
XXXX 5201
Applied lessons
MUSI 5XXX
Music History
Other course with advisor approval
Total Hours21

Students seeking admission to the Composition track must complete an interview with the appropriate composition faculty and submit a portfolio of recent compositions. Students must also demonstrate piano proficiency by performing a short prepared piece or two (totaling no more than five minutes), and by sight-reading during the interview. Students deficient in this area must take the appropriate undergraduate courses.

Musicology Track
Courses
MUSI 5363Pedagogy Of Theory3
MUSI 5398Adv Study in Appl Discipline3
MUSI 6099Thesis6
Select two of the following with approval of advisor:6
Seminar In Baroque Music
Seminar In Classical Music
Sem In Nineteenth-Century Mus
Sem In Twentieth-Century Mus
Elective(s) with advisor approval3
Total Hours21

Students seeking admission to the Musicology track must complete an admission interview with the musicology coordinator and submit a sample of academic writing.

Students who graduate with an emphasis in Musicology are required to pass a language proficiency examination in either German or French. The language requirement should ideally be fulfilled by the end of the second semester of residence.

Music Therapy Track
Courses
MUSI 5322Philos & Theory of Mus Therapy3
MUSI 5323Grad Music Ther Practicum3
MUSI 6099Thesis6
MUSI 6332Adv Music Therapy Practice3
Elective (with advisor approval)3
SOCI 5314Social Statistics 13
Total Hours21

Students seeking admission to the Music Therapy track must complete an admission interview with the music therapy faculty and submit a sample of academic writing and a video of a music therapy session.

The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB) marketable skills initiative is part of the state’s 60x30TX plan and was designed to help students articulate their skills to employers.  Marketable skills are those skills valued by employers and/or graduate programs that can be applied in a variety of work or education settings and may include interpersonal, cognitive, and applied skill areas.

The Master of Music is designed to provide graduates with the following marketable skills:

  • Communication skills: written, verbal, and musical.

  • Critical and creative thinking, multitasking, and problem solving skills.

  • Versatile 21st century musicians with professional, collaborative, and inclusive demeanor.

  • Entrepreneurial in spirit including leadership, marketing, and self-promotion.

  • Community engagement and ability to work with diverse populations.