Duke Music Graduate Programs

Duke University offers the A.M. and Ph.D. degrees in composition, musicology, and ethnomusicology; it also offers an A.M. in performance practice studies. Students in the A.M. programs are expected to continue toward the Ph.D. (those obtaining the A.M. in performance practice ordinarily continue toward the Ph.D. in musicology).

Although there is no separate degree track in music theory, students may pursue doctoral research in this areas within the context of the musicology program. No graduate degrees are offered in performance, music education, or music therapy.

For a student with no prior graduate study in music, the A.M. may be obtained in three semesters of full-time study. However, the Music Department admits students to the Master's program only if it is their intention to continue toward a doctorate. The Ph.D. requires an additional year of course work (hence, a total of five semesters) and the completion of a dissertation, which takes another two to four years. Students entering with a Master's degree from another institution can expect their program to be shortened by approximately a year, provided that the M.A. degree is not more than six years old.

Students have much opportunity for contact with members of the faculty and for individualized instruction. Currently the department has thirty-some graduate students in residence (with a few more abroad for dissertation research) and a full-time graduate faculty of fourteen, hence a very favorable student-faculty ratio. Degree programs are comparatively flexible and to a large extent can be tailored to a student's special interests. Individual objectives can be met through a wide choice of courses in music history, ethnomusicology, composition, theory, analysis, and performance practice (including projects with performing artists on the departmental faculty), as well as courses in other disciplines.

For additional information, answers to your questions, and/or application forms, please contact , Director of Graduate Studies.

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Graduate Student News

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USA Today's College Factual names Duke one of the top 10 music colleges in the United States. Joining the ranks of lauded music programs at Yale, Columbia, and Stanford, Duke's music program is praised for providing "a comprehensive education in performance, theory, history and ethnomusicology. The undergraduate program exposes…
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Video: Tom Brothers on Louis Armstrong

A short video interview with Professor Tom Brothers about his new book, Louis Armstrong Master of Modernism.
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Alumni News: March 2014

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Joy Calico's (Ph.D. 1999) new book, Arnold Schoenberg's 'A Survivor from Warsaw' in Postwar Europe, was released this month from the University of California Press. Calico is Assoc. Prof. of Musicology at the Blair School of Music, Vanderbilt University. ****** Paul Leary (Ph.D. 2011) and pianist Thomas Rosenkranz were…
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