The Department’s minimum admission requirements are a BMus degree with an average of 3.0 in the last two years of undergraduate work (or graduate work) at the University of Alberta, or an equivalent qualification from a recognized institution, and where applicable, satisfactory completion of English language proficiency prior to admission (see English Language Requirement). In the case of the MA an Honors BA or equivalent is acceptable in place of the BMus. An audition, preferably in person, is required as part of the admission procedure for applicants in Applied Music and Choral Conducting; sample papers must be submitted by applicants to the MA, and a portfolio of compositions (together with recordings if possible) by applicants in Composition. Applicants must also submit a one-page statement of purpose.
The MMus program in Performance consists of ★24, including MUSIC 505, MUSIC 621 or MUSIC 632, MUSIC 639 (or MUSIC 631 for Wind Band Conducting majors) and ★12 in music options, ★3 of which must be a course in which a major research paper is required. All MMus Performance students specializing in band or orchestral instruments (not including Wind Band Conducting majors) are required to participate in a large ensemble for one year (MUSIC 641). All MMus students in organ performance may complete ★3 in an approved music option in lieu of MUSIC 639. Of the music option courses, up to ★6 may be taken in a Department other than Music, subject to approval by the student’s supervisor. A juried recital will be considered the equivalent of the final oral examination.
The MMus program in Composition consists of ★24, including MUSIC 545 or MUSIC 645, MUSIC 581, MUSIC 651, MUSIC 660, MUSIC 661 and ★6 in music options. Students who have not taken at least ★3 in electronic music (or equivalent) in their undergraduate training will be required to take MUSIC 445 outside of the program requirements. A portfolio of works composed and performed during the student’s course of study in the MMus program must be presented to a jury and will be considered the equivalent of a thesis. At the discretion of the supervisor, students who have not taken a bibliography and research methods course (or equivalent) will be required to take MUSIC 505 as one of the approved options.
The MMus program in Choral Conducting consists of ★24 including MUSIC 630, MUSIC 633, MUSIC 634, MUSIC 638, MUSIC 640, and ★6 in music options. In addition, a juried recital and an essay on some aspect of choral literature, conducting or pedagogy will be considered the equivalent of the thesis and final oral examination. At the discretion of the supervisor, students who have not taken a bibliography and research methods course (or equivalent) will be required to take MUSIC 505 as one of the approved options.
There are two programs available to the student admitted to the MA. Students must declare which program they intend to follow at the beginning of their graduate studies. Any student wishing to change program must seek the approval of the graduate committee.
- Thesis-based MA: The thesis-based program consists of a minimum of eight graduate-level courses (★24), including MUSIC 614, MUSIC 650 and MUSIC 665, ★15 in options, and a thesis.
- Course-based MA: The course-based program consists of a minimum of nine graduate-level courses (★27), including MUSIC 614, MUSIC 650 and MUSIC 665, and ★18 in options, and in addition, an oral research presentation in the Department of Music (MUSIC 903, MUSIC 906, or MUSIC 909 Directed Research Project.
In addition to the above requirements, MUSIC 505 may be required of entering students in both program routes if they have not demonstrated competency in bibliographic and research-methods skills in their previous studies.
All MA and MMus Choral Conducting students are required to demonstrate a reading knowledge of French or German, or another language other than English, appropriate to the area of research and approved by the student’s supervisor. This requirement will normally be completed before the thesis or capping project is undertaken. In the case of the MMus Choral Conducting, this requirement will normally be completed before the essay is undertaken. Coursework undertaken to satisfy this requirement will not be credited toward the program.
The minimum period of residence for the MA (thesis-based) and the MMus degree is two four-month terms of full-time attendance at the University of Alberta.