HEGIS Code: 1004.10
This program offers the student an opportunity to acquire training for a career as a composer and arranger or as a college teacher of music theory and composition. A thorough knowledge of contemporary harmony and a background in orchestration are essential for this degree.
The program in composition and arranging stresses creative activity emphasizing the development of a personal aesthetic expressible in sound. Competencies also include a broad knowledge of historical and contemporary compositional practices, music theory, history and criticism. The program involves the utilization and application of this knowledge to the compositional process.
Acceptance in the program in composition/arranging will be based upon an interview, audition, evidence of creative talent and a knowledge of craftsmanship in writing music demonstrated in a portfolio of compositions/arrangements that includes both the scores and recordings.
Doctor of Musical Arts (D.M.A.)
Qualified doctoral candidates must earn a minimum of 60 credits beyond the master’s level and must maintain a 3.0 G.P.A. or higher. Doctoral candidates must register for either course credit or MUS 800 - Continuous Registration in every semester until they graduate.
The Plan of Study includes 30 credits of core curriculum courses. In conjunction with their assigned major professor, students are responsible for selecting the elective courses to complete a Plan of Study that identifies course work needed to fulfill degree requirements.
The College through its Graduate Division, accepts prospective candidates for the degree of Doctor of Musical Arts (D.M.A.). The degree is granted in the fields of music performance, composition/arranging, music education, or music history and literature, and requires demonstration of distinguished achievement. The degree is offered with an emphasis on jazz/commercial music in accordance with the mission of the College.
Attainment of a doctoral degree at Five Towns College requires outstanding scholarship and research culminating in a dissertation that contributes to the general fund of knowledge in the area of concentration. Qualified doctoral candidates must earn a minimum of 60 credits beyond the master’s level and must maintain a 3.0 G.P.A. or higher.
Doctoral degrees in music at the College are intended for those planning to work at the most advanced academic and professional levels of musical endeavor. Students admitted to doctoral study are expected to achieve competence as musician/scholars who can communicate effectively both orally and in written form. They should be able to demonstrate the ability to write concisely with clarity and prepare critiques of musical performances that reflect mature, sensitive insights into musical values.
Doctoral study requires a minimum of three or four years of graduate work. Completion of an appropriate Masters Degree is prerequisite to doctoral study. The degree program objectives listed below must be demonstrated by candidates for graduation as a prerequisite to qualifying for the Doctor of Musical Arts degree:
- Intellectual awareness and curiosity sufficient to predict continued growth and contribution to the discipline;
- Knowledge of the techniques of jazz harmony sufficient to analyze selected compositions;
- Knowledge of representative literature and influential composers;
- Expertise in music history, education, performance, or composition;
- Expertise in the supervision of music programs;
- Expertise in the application and utilization of appropriate research skills; and
- Sufficient writing and speaking skills to communicate clearly and effectively to members of the scholarly and wider communities.
Admission Policies and Procedures (D.M.A.)
All applicants for admission to doctoral study must submit a completed application, three letters of recommendation, official transcripts documenting the successful completion of an appropriate Masters degree with a G.P.A. of 3.0 or better and schedule a personal interview and audition.
Applicants must also submit an original essay of at least 1500 words on a musical subject of their choice. The essay must be typed and supported by citations and references.
Applicants seeking acceptance must demonstrate exceptional musical skills on an instrument/voice, or present a record of outstanding pedagogical achievement, or submit a scholarly paper or portfolio of compositions/ arrangements that provide evidence of superior potential and creativity.
Establishment of Matriculation
The Graduate Governance Committee evaluates applications for matriculation based on the following criteria: (1) applicant’s grade point average from previous degree pro- grams; (2) letters of recommendation; (3) original essay; (4) personal interview; and (5) individual requirements set forth in the descriptions for each of the programs.
Students who do not wish to enroll in a degree program are permitted to register as nondegree special students. Special students are not eligible for independent study or advisement.
It should be noted that while in certain exceptional cases credits earned as a special student may later be applied to degree candidacy, special student status should not be viewed as a prelude or aid to the attainment of degree candidate status. In any case, no more than 12 credits of coursework earned as a special student can be applied to the D.M.A. degree. Past or present status as a special student is not considered during evaluation of an application for degree candidacy; the latter is considered a separate application, and different admissions criteria are applied. There can thus be no guarantee that individuals granted special student status will be accepted for degree candidacy should they apply.
International special students taking fewer than twelve credits a semester are not eligible for a student visa. All special students taking 6 or more credits a semester must comply with New York State immunization regulations.
After acceptance as a matriculated student seeking degree candidacy, the Director of Graduate Studies will act as the student’s mentor and will be responsible for helping the student select the electives to complete a Plan of Study and meet with the student periodically to review the their progress toward completion of the dissertation and degree requirements.
Plan of Study
The Plan of Study includes 30 credits of core curriculum courses selected from those listed below. Students are responsible for selecting the elective courses to complete a Plan of Study that identifies course work needed to fulfill degree requirements.
Graduate courses completed at an accredited institution, not applied to another graduate degree, completed with a grade of A or B, may be presented for transfer of credit with the approval of the Director of Graduate Studies. Grades below B in graduate classes do not carry doctoral credit.
Time Limitation/Leave of Absence
Students in the Doctoral Program must complete a Plan of Study prior to the end of their first year with the signed approval of the Administration, 12 credits during the first two years of study and all requirements within ten years of the date of matriculation. Exceptions are granted only in medical emergencies with the permission of the Graduate Governance Committee. Other exceptions are reviewed on a case-by-case basis, but approval is very rare and appeals are actively discouraged.
The following regulations are in effect for all doctoral students:
- Students must register for MUS 801 - Doctoral Advisement each semester after completion of EDU 652 - Doctoral Seminar 1 . Registration for Doctoral Advisement entitles students to access both the main and Graduate Libraries and consult with their major professor in regard to their research project/dissertation.
- If a student who is still within the ten-year time period for degree completion does not register for at least one three credit course, matriculation will lapse unless he/she registers for MUS 800 - Continuous Registration .
Students who fail to maintain matriculation by the end of the given semester will be considered to have withdrawn and will be required to reapply for admission to continue working toward his or her degree. Readmission to the program is not guaranteed.
Leave of Absence
In extraordinary cases a student may be granted a leave of absence upon written application to the Director of Graduate Studies and with the approval of the Provost. Leave of absences are typically granted only in cases of serious illness. The duration of the leave may be counted as part of the ten years allowed for completion of the degree.
Before admission to degree candidacy, students must pass a Comprehensive Examination that tests the extent of the student’s knowledge in the general field of study and the area of specialization. The examination should be taken before completion of all course work.
Students will only be permitted a second attempt to pass the Comprehensive Examination upon the recommendation of the Graduate Academic Standards Committee. The second examination may not take place until four months after the date of the first examination.
Doctoral candidates must be registered for either course credit or MUS 800 - Continuous Registration in every semester until they graduate.
Composition and Arranging Recitals
Candidates in the composition and arranging program must compose a major work as well as present two recitals of other compositions in a variety of media. Regulations governing publication of compositions are the same as those governing publication of dissertations.
The required abstract must address the formal, stylistic, and technical elements of the compositions.
Concerts and Performance Recitals
Candidates in the music performance program must conduct three major public concerts or present three recitals: (1) a solo recital during the second semester; (2) a recital of vocal and/or instrumental chamber music; and (3) a solo recital prior to graduation. No more than one concert or recital is permitted per semester. Each concert or recital will be evaluated independently by a panel of judges selected by the Graduate Academic Standards Committee. If a candidate’s performance is judged unsatisfactory, an additional one must be performed. In no case will a candidate be permit- ted to remain in the program if more than one concert or recital is determined to be unsatisfactory.
Doctoral programs require the completion of a dissertation or a major composition, which must meet required standards of scholarship and demonstrate the candidate’s ability to conduct original research.
The Dissertation Proposal should include a statement on the significance/need for the study, research methodology, possible conclusions and recommendations for further research, and cite examples of literature related to the topic. Candidates may not offer their dissertation to any agency for publication without explicit approval in writing from the Graduate Academic Standards Committee.
Enrollment in MUS 800 - Continuous Registration is required until the dissertation is completed. Doctoral candidates seeking financial aid may apply for full-time status with this registration or an additional enrollment in a three credit course.
Final Dissertation Defense
Upon completion of all required courses and the dissertation, the candidate must schedule a Final Dissertation Defense. The defense focuses on the final document itself but can include general questioning related to the field of study within the scope of the dissertation. The Graduate Academic Standards Committee appoints at least three faculty members to conduct the defense.
After successful completion of the defense, the candidate will prepare the dissertation with the Director of Library before submittal for publication with ProQuest.
The Graduate Academic Standards Committee will recommend conferral of the doctoral degree by the College’s Board of Trustees.
Publication of the Dissertation
University Microfilms, Inc., Ann Arbor, Michigan processes the document and sends catalog information to the Library of Congress for printing and distribution of cards for depository catalogs and libraries. The abstract of the dissertation is printed in Microfilm Abstracts and distributed to leading libraries in the United States and elsewhere, and to a select list of journals and abstracting services. One copy of the dissertation is archived in the Graduate Library/Learning Resource Center.