grad-music

The mission of the Mead Witter School of Music is:

  • to provide a rich, integrated program of undergraduate and graduate education that promotes the highest levels of professional, creative, and scholarly development while challenging students to achieve their greatest potential;
  • to cultivate an environment that inspires creativity, stimulates intellectual curiosity, and fosters critical thinking; and
  • to serve the university community, the public, and the profession through performance, composition, scholarship, music education, outreach, and engagement.

The Mead Witter School of Music enriches students' educational experience by hosting guest artists and scholars for master classes, recitals, colloquia, seminars, and festivals. Mead Witter School of Music organizations and ensembles perform more than 350 recitals and concerts every year, making a significant contribution to the cultural life of the university and the wider Madison community.

Mead Witter School of Music views its goals and objectives as complementary to those of the University of Wisconsin–Madison, which include "to provide an environment in which faculty and students can discover, examine critically, preserve and transmit the knowledge, wisdom and values that will help ensure the survival of the present and future generations with improvement in the quality of life." 

The University of Wisconsin–Madison School of Music is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM), and has been an institutional member of NASM since 1966.

THe Doctor of Musical Arts degree

The DMA (Doctor of Musical Arts) and the Ph.D. are the highest degrees conferred by the Mead Witter School of Music. The DMA is granted for evidence of general proficiency and distinctive attainment in a specialized field of performance. The student's ability in independent investigation is demonstrated through a series of public recital performances and in a final project presenting original research and creative scholarship.

Every major track in the DMA program consists of, first, course and proficiency requirements including a minor field of study outside the student's major performance specialty. In addition to this, the core of the degree program is the doctoral candidate's Doctoral Performance and Research. This is a body of performances and scholarship that is, as a whole, the candidate's significant contribution to the field of musical performance. 

The DMA in music: performance is offered with concentrations in: brass; composition; guitar; percussion; piano performance; collaborative piano; piano performance and pedagogy; organ; string performance; vocal performance; opera; woodwinds; multiple woodwinds; choral conducting; orchestral conducting; wind conducting.

The DMA degrees requires significant work beyond the master's degree, including the extensive independent work described above. Each major track varies slightly. See the course lists available through the Requirements tab for details. Contact the Mead Witter School of Music graduate office for complete explanations of the degrees offered at the master's or doctoral levels: gradadmissions@music.wisc.edu.

Doctor of Musical Arts students have achieved a high level of artistry as a performing musician before beginning the program at Mead Witter School of Music. The curriculum is designed to challenge students, broaden their musical knowledge and experience, and foster their growth in accomplishing independent research as well as formulating a unique approach to musical performance. Coursework in musicology and music theory, study of pedagogy and literature, and close mentorship by a group of supportive faculty members all contribute toward deepening a DMA student's encounter with music. A minor field of study, required of all DMA students, assures breadth by ensuring work in a field of study outside the major specialty. Proficiency in a foreign language supports research in the major field.

All DMA curricula in the Mead Witter School of Music are built on a similar model: applied study in the field of major specialty, related courses in the major specialty, a variety of musicology and theory courses, a minor field of study, and proficiency in at least one foreign language. The tracks differ in details, such as the number and nature of recital performances. The core of the DMA program, of course, is doctoral performance and research, a body of work comprised of public performances (recorded and available to scholars and musicians) and a doctoral research project. The whole is the DMA candidate's contribution to the community of performers and scholars. 

Each DMA student has a faculty committee, the doctoral performance and research committee. Mentoring, evaluating, and supporting the student through the degree program, this committee provides multiple perspectives on the student's performance and research. 

Important information on academic policies for the DMA program is available, in summary, through the Policies page. Complete information is available in the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook. Since the School of Music offers the DMA program through the aegis of the UW-Madison Graduate School, all DMA students also need to be familiar with the UW–Madison Graduate School's Academic Policies and Procedures. Advising is available through the major professor as well as through the director of graduate studies and the graduate office in the Mead Witter School of Music. 

Minimum admission requirements of the Graduate School apply to all applicants for graduate study in music. The Mead Witter School of Music has additional requirements. Applicants should have a master’s degree in music or equivalent foundational course work as required by each area of study. A cumulative GPA of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale, calculated on the last 60 credit hours) is necessary for full admission. Admission to the DMA program assumes a high level of performance ability determined by audition. Composition applicants must have completed a master’s degree or equivalent in composition. The DMA program involves substantial academic work and requires excellent reading, writing, and speaking skills. Therefore, all international students are required to submit a TOEFL score. See the Mead Witter School of Music graduate admissions website for information on minimum score requirements. The Mead Witter School of Music does not waive the TOEFL score requirement for students who have completed a degree at an American university. All DMA applicants must submit a scholarly paper as part of the application. Typically, performance applicants are required to audition in person. For details on specific audition requirements and additional application materials, visit the Mead Witter School of Music graduate admissions website.

Graduate School Admissions

Graduate admissions is a two-step process between academic degree programs and the Graduate School. Applicants must meet requirements of both the program(s) and the Graduate School. Once you have researched the graduate program(s) you are interested in, apply online.  

Graduate School Resources

Resources to help you afford graduate study might include assistantships, fellowships, traineeships, and financial aid. Further funding information is available from the Graduate School. Be sure to check with your program for individual policies and processes related to funding.

Program Resources

Through the generosity of Paul J. Collins, the Mead Witter School of Music is the recipient of a substantial fellowship fund which, in combination with the Graduate School and University Foundation, allows the school to offer multiple-year funding to the highest quality graduate students in performance. The Collins fellowships, along with The Lorna Wendt and Anonymous Fund Fellowships for Choral and Voice students are offered as Wisconsin Distinguished Fellowships and provide full tuition and fees, a generous stipend, additional funds, and comprehensive health care. Nomination by a performance faculty member—usually following an on-site audition—is required for consideration.

The Mead Witter School of Music also offers teaching and project assistantships in music history, music theory, piano, conducting, voice, and other performance areas. These positions offer tuition remission plus a salary and health care benefits. In addition, the Mead Witter School of Music selects qualified applicants for the Chancellor’s Fellowship, University Fellowship, and Advanced Opportunity Fellowship. The UW–Madison Office of Student Financial Services assists students in obtaining general grants and loans. All Mead Witter School of Music students who receive funding are required to enroll full-time with 8–12 graduate credits.

Minimum Graduate School Requirements

Review the Graduate School minimum academic progress and degree requirements, in addition to the program requirements listed below.

Major Requirements

MODE OF INSTRUCTION

Face to Face Evening/Weekend Online Hybrid Accelerated
Yes No No No No

Mode of Instruction Definitions

CURRICULAR REQUIREMENTS

Minimum Credit Requirement 51 credits
Minimum Residence Credit Requirement 32 credits
Minimum Graduate Coursework Requirement Half of degree coursework (26 credits out of 51 total credits) must be completed graduate-level coursework; courses with the Graduate Level Coursework attribute are identified and searchable in the university's Course Guide (http://my.wisc.edu/CourseGuideRedirect/BrowseByTitle).
Overall Graduate GPA Requirement 3.25 GPA required.
Other Grade Requirements Graduate students at UW–Madison must meet expectations for satisfactory progress toward completion of the degree while enrolled. In School of Music graduate programs, a graduate student must maintain a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.25. Even though grades below B do not count for graduate credit toward the degree, those grades are included in computation of the GPA.

In the first semester in which the cumulative GPA falls below 3.25 the director of graduate studies will notify the student in writing. After a second semester in which the GPA remains below 3.25 the student will be placed on probation for the next semester enrolled. This action suspends all financial aid awards through UW–Madison, though loans and work-study are not affected. Failure to raise the GPA to 3.25 or above in the probation semester results in the student’s withdrawal from the Graduate School and from the School of Music program.

To maintain satisfactory progress School of Music students on UW–Madison funding (teaching assistants, project assistants, fellows, and scholarship recipients) must maintain full-time status. A student’s satisfactory progress is also in jeopardy should a major project or recital be judged incomplete or deficient. Failure of one or more parts of the comprehensive examinations, preliminary examinations, or final defense is also considered a lapse in satisfactory progress.
Assessments and Examinations In addition to evaluations in individual classes, School of Music programs examine graduate students at defined points in their career.

For doctoral students, preliminary examinations are tools to evaluate the student’s currency and knowledge of the major field and the minor area of study, but also to determine the readiness to embark on the final stage of research. The first part of the Comprehensive Examination is written, and the second part is an oral exam attended by the student’s committee members.

Once doctoral candidates have completed all their work, the oral defense is an opportunity for the dissertation (Ph.D.) or DPRC (DMA) committee to address the contributions made through the dissertation (Ph.D.) or the doctoral performance and research (DMA). No grades are reported on the transcript for these program-level examinations.
Language Requirements All School of Music doctoral programs require proficiency at the intermediate level in at least one foreign language. Foreign language proficiency assures that the student has the tools needed to pursue comprehensive research in the major field. Details on foreign language requirements and ways to fulfill proficiency expectations are outlined in the course lists available through the Requirements tab for each degree. This information is also available in the advising worksheets for each degree major track.
Doctoral Minor/Breadth Requirements All doctoral students are required to complete a minor. Minors with coursework entirely within the School of Music total 12 credits and are taken as Option B–distributed minors. These distributed minors are narrowly defined to ensure the principle of breadth in relation to the major specialty.

Required COURSES

The tables below outline requirements for each major track. If you have questions about any of our programs, we invite you to contact the Mead Witter School of Music graduate admissions office. 

Brass Track1

Doctoral Level Applied Instrument Study16
4 semesters, 4 credits each semester
Select course corresponding to the major instrument:
Doctoral Level-Horn
Doctoral Level-Trumpet
Doctoral Level-Trombone
Doctoral Level Euphonium
Doctoral Level Tuba
Literature4
Seminar-Instrumental Literature (topics course; two semesters required) 2
Reference and Research Materials
MUSIC/​L I S  619 Music Research Methods and Materials3
Musicology and Music Theory Courses9
At least one course must be taken in Musicology and one in Music Theory. 9 credits must be earned at UW-Madison.
For a summary of the courses eligible for this requirement refer to the last table on this page: DMA: Courses Qualifying for Musicology and Music Theory Requirement
Doctoral Minor9-12
9-12 credits in a field other than the major specialty. See the Doctoral Minors page or the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details.
Language Proficiency
One foreign language at intermediate level reading knowledge. French or German preferred. See Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details on meeting the Foreign Language Proficiency.
Students should note that the course credits required as described above total 45 credits at minimum (including 4 recitals). Up to an additional six credits (including the lecture-recital and DMA research project) may be needed to reach the required 51 credits.
Preliminary Examinations
Preliminary Examinations occur in the semester all of the above requirements are fulfilled. See the Policies tab or, for full information on policies and procedures, the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for full information.
After preliminary examinations continuous registration for exactly three research-related credits is required. This may include both degree recitals (MUS PERF 999) and Research (MUSIC 999).
Doctoral Performance and Research
1. Recitals
Enroll for each recital as a 1-credit course.
5 recitals are required: one solo recital, one chamber recital, one solo/chamber/combination recital, one concerto performance (preferably with orchestra), and one lecture recital. The lecture recital is usually scheduled after preliminary examinations.
DMA Recital
2. DMA Research Project
PhD Diss/DMA Project
Enroll in 1-3 credits to bring course load total to 3 credits.
Oral Defense
The oral defense is to be scheduled with the Doctoral Performance and Research Committee after ALL WORK is complete.

Choral Conducting Track1

Doctoral Level Conducting Applied Study8
2 credits each semester
Doctoral Level Conducting
Advanced Conducting Seminar6
3 semesters required
Advanced Conducting Seminar
Seminar: Choral Literature4
2 semesters required
Seminar in Choral Literature
Reference and Research Materials
Music Research Methods and Materials
Musicology and Music Theory Courses
At least one course must be taken in Musicology and one in Music Theory. 9 credits must be earned at UW-Madison.
For a summary of the courses eligible for this requirement refer to the last table on this page: DMA: Courses Qualifying for Musicology and Music Theory Requirement
Doctoral Minor9-12
9-12 credits in a field other than the major specialty. See the Doctoral Minors page or the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details.
Foreign Language Proficiency
Two foreign languages (one must be German) at intermediate level reading knowledge. See Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details on meeting the Foreign Language Proficiency.
Students should note that the course credits required as described above total 42 credits at minimum (including 3 recitals). Up to an additional 9 credits (including 2 recitals and DMA research project) may be needed to reach the minimum of 51 credits earned in the program.
Preliminary Examinations
Preliminary Examinations occur in the semester all of the above requirements are fulfilled. See the Policies tab or, for full information on policies and procedures, the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for full information.
After preliminary examinations continuous registration for exactly three research-related credits is required. This may include both degree recitals (MUS PERF 999) and Research (MUSIC 999).
Doctoral Performance and Research
1. Recitals
5 recitals required as described below. The lecture-recital and final performance are normally presented after preliminary examinations, while all others are normally presented before preliminary examinations. Enroll for each recital as a separate 1-credit course.
DMA Recital
1 small group recital
1 a cappella recital
1 recital with voices and instruments
1 lecture-recital performance
1 final performance
2. DMA Research Project
Enroll in 1-3 credits to bring course load total to 3 credits.
PhD Diss/DMA Project
Oral Defense
The oral defense is to be scheduled with the Doctoral Performance and Research Committee after ALL WORK is complete.

Collaborative Piano Track1

Doctoral Level Piano Accompanying Applied Study8
4 semesters, 2 credits each semester
Doctoral Level Private Instruction in Accompanying
Other Coursework in the Major
MUSIC 796 Seminar in Duo Sonata Literature3
MUSIC 792 Seminar in Vocal Literature3
MUSIC 467
MUSIC 468
Language Diction for Singing I
and Language Diction for Singing II
4
or MUSIC 466 Diction for Singers
Reference and Research Materials
MUSIC/​L I S  619 Music Research Methods and Materials3
Doctoral Minor9-12
9-12 credits in a field other than the major specialty. See the Doctoral Minors page or the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details.
Language Proficiency
Proficiency in the pronunciation of English, French, German, Italian, and knowledge of the International Phonetic Alphabet system are required and determined by the major professor. The basis for doctoral study in collaborative piano is 2 semesters each of elementary German, French, and Italian. Depending upon the area of focus (vocal or instrumental), doctoral students normally continue to the intermediate level in 2 languages. The language requirement will be monitored by the major professor.
Students should note that the course credits as described above total 43 at minimum (including 4 recitals). Up to an additional 8 credits (including recitals and DMA Research Project) may be needed to earn the degree minimum of 51 credits.
Preliminary Examinations
Preliminary Examinations occur in the semester all of the above requirements are fulfilled. See the Policies tab or, for full information on policies and procedures, the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for full information.
After preliminary examinations continuous registration for exactly three research-related credits is required. This may include both degree recitals (MUS PERF 999) and Research (MUSIC 999).
Doctoral Performance and Research
This body of work, comprising degree recitals and the DMA Research Project, is the core of the DMA degree.
1. Recitals
6 recitals are required. These must include at least 1 vocal, 1 instrumental, with four recitals normally performed before preliminary examinations. After preliminary examinations recitals usually include 1 lecture-recital and 1 final recital (prepared independently).
Enroll for each recital as a separate 1-credit course.
DMA Recital
2. DMA Research Project
Enroll in 1-3 credits to bring course load total to 3 credits.
PhD Diss/DMA Project
Oral Defense
The oral defense is to be scheduled with the Doctoral Performance and Research Committee after ALL WORK is complete.

Composition Track1

Doctoral Composition Applied Study12
4 semesters, 3 credits each semester
Doctoral Level Composition (taken twice)
Doctoral Level Composition (taken twice)
Seminars in Composition6
The following courses qualify for this requirement:
Orchestration I
Seminar in Composition
Historical Musicology6
The following courses qualify for this requirement:
Survey of Music in the Middle Ages
Survey of Music in the Renaissance
Survey of Music in the Baroque Era
Survey of Music in the Classic Era
Survey of Music in the Romantic Era
Survey of Music in the Twentieth Century
Music in the United States
Historical Performance Practices
Survey of Opera
Seminar in Musicology
Music Theory6
The following courses qualify for this requirement: 2
Form and Analysis
Form and Analysis II
Historical Music Theories 1
Historical Music Theories 2
Schenkerian Analysis
Post-tonal Analysis
Current Issues in Musical Thought 1
Topics in Music Analysis 1
Topics in Music Analysis 2
Conducting6
Consult with major professor on course choices.
Other Required Courses
MUSIC/​L I S  619 Music Research Methods and Materials3
MUSIC 900 Colloquium0
Doctoral Minor 9-12
9-12 credits in a field other than composition. See Doctoral Minors page or the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for more information.
Foreign Language Proficiency
One foreign language at intermediate level reading knowledge. French or German preferred. See Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details on meeting the Foreign Language Proficiency.
Students should note that the course credits as described above total 48 at minimum. Up to an additional 3 credits (including the lecture-recital and DMA composition project) may be needed to reach the minimum of 51 credits earned.
Preliminary Examinations
Preliminary Examinations occur in the semester all of the above requirements are fulfilled. See the Policies tab or, for full information on policies and procedures, the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for full information.
After preliminary examinations continuous registration for exactly three research-related credits is required. This may include both degree recitals (MUS PERF 999) and Research (MUSIC 999).
Doctoral Performance and Research
1. Lecture-recital.
The lecture-recital is scheduled after the preliminary examinations.
MUS PERF 999 DMA Recital1
2. DMA Composition Project
Enroll in 1-3 credits to bring course load total to 3 credits.
MUSIC 999 PhD Diss/DMA Project 31-3
Oral Defense
The oral defense is to be scheduled with the Doctoral Performance and Research Committee after ALL WORK is complete.

Orchestral Conducting Track1

Doctoral Level Conducting Applied Study8
2 credits each semester
Doctoral Level Conducting
Choral Conducting2
Advanced Conducting Seminar 2
Advanced Conducting
Reference and Research Materials
MUSIC/​L I S  619 Music Research Methods and Materials3
Musicology and Music Theory Courses9
At least one course must be taken in Musicology and one in Music Theory. 9 credits must be earned at UW-Madison.
For a summary of the courses eligible for this requirement refer to the last table on this page: DMA: Courses Qualifying for Musicology and Music Theory Requirement
Doctoral Minor9-12
9-12 credits in a field other than the major specialty. See the Doctoral Minors tab or the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details.
Foreign Language Proficiency
One foreign language at intermediate level reading knowledge. French or German preferred. See Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details on meeting the Foreign Language Proficiency.
Students should note that the course credits as described above total 36 at minimum (including 0 recitals) before preliminary examinations. Up to an additional 15 credits (including recitals and DMA research project) may be needed to reach the minimum of 51 credits earned.
Preliminary Examinations
Preliminary Examinations occur in the semester all of the above requirements are fulfilled. See the Policies tab or, for full information on policies and procedures, the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for full information.
After preliminary examinations continuous registration for exactly three research-related credits is required. This may include both degree recitals (MUS PERF 999) and Research (MUSIC 999).
Doctoral Performance and Research
1. Recitals.
5 recitals required. Major professor will advise on scheduling of recitals before or after preliminary examinations.
Enroll for each recital as a separate 1 credit course.
DMA Recital
2. DMA Research Project.
Enroll in 1-3 credits to bring course load total to 3 credits.
PhD Diss/DMA Project
Oral Defense
The oral defense is to be scheduled with the Doctoral Performance and Research Committee after ALL WORK is complete.

Organ Performance Track1

Doctoral Level Organ Applied Study16
4 semesters, 4 credits each semester
Doctoral Level-Organ
Organ Literature6
Organ Literature and Design
Independent Work
Other Courses in the Major4
Organ Improvisation and Liturgy
Organ Improvisation and Liturgy
Research Methods and Materials
Music Research Methods and Materials
Musicology and Music Theory Courses9
At least one course must be taken in Musicology and one in Music Theory. 9 credits must be earned at UW-Madison.
For a summary of the courses eligible for this requirement refer to the last table on this page: DMA: Courses Qualifying for Musicology and Music Theory Requirement
Doctoral Minor
9-12 credits in a field other than the major specialty. See the Doctoral Minors page or the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details.
Language Proficiency
One foreign language at intermediate level reading knowledge. French or German preferred. See Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details on meeting the Foreign Language Proficiency.
Students should note that the course credits as described above total 50 at minimum (including 3 recitals). Up to an additional 1 credit (including recitals and DMA Research Project) may be needed to earn the degree minimum of 51 credits.
Preliminary Examinations
Preliminary Examinations occur in the semester all of the above requirements are fulfilled. See the Policies tab or, for full information on policies and procedures, the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for full information.
After preliminary examinations continuous registration for exactly three research-related credits is required. This may include both degree recitals (MUS PERF 999) and Research (MUSIC 999).
Doctoral Performance and Research
This body of work, comprising degree recitals and the DMA Research Project, is the core of the DMA degree.
1. Recitals
5 recitals required. The recitals are: 1 solo recital, 1 ensemble recital, 1 lecture-recital (these before preliminary examinations); after preliminary examinations, 1 lecture-recital and 1 final solo recital.
Enroll for each recital as a separate 1-credit course.
DMA Recital
2. DMA Research Project
Enroll in 1-3 credits to bring course load total to 3 credits.
Oral Defense
The oral defense is held with the Doctoral Performance and Research Committee after ALL WORK is complete.

Percussion Track1

Doctoral Level Percussion Applied Study16
4 semesters, 4 credits each semester
Doctoral Level Percussion
Literature2
Percussion Literature 2
Advanced Pedagogy
Reference and Research Materials3
Music Research Methods and Materials
Musicology and Music Theory Courses9
At least one course must be taken in Musicology and one in Music Theory. 9 credits must be earned at UW-Madison.
For a summary of the courses eligible for this requirement refer to the last table on this page: DMA: Courses Qualifying for Musicology and Music Theory Requirement
Doctoral Minor9-12
9-12 credits in a field other than the major specialty. See the Doctoral Minors page or the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details.
Language Proficiency
One foreign language at intermediate level reading knowledge. French or German preferred. See Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details on meeting the Foreign Language Proficiency.
Students should note that the course credits as described above total 42 at minimum (including 3 recitals). Up to an additional 9 credits (including recitals and DMA Research Project) may be needed to earn the degree minimum of 51 credits.
Preliminary Examinations
Preliminary Examinations occur in the semester all of the above requirements are fulfilled. See the Policies tab or, for full information on policies and procedures, the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for full information.
After preliminary examinations continuous registration for exactly three research-related credits is required. This may include both degree recitals (MUS PERF 999) and Research (MUSIC 999).
Doctoral Performance and Research
This body of work, comprising degree recitals and the DMA Research Project, is the core of the DMA degree.
1. Recitals
There are 5 required recitals: 1 solo recital, 2 solo or solo/chamber recitals (one of which may be a concerto performance), these three before preliminary examinations; after preliminary examinations, 1 lecture-recital and 1 solo recital.
Enroll for each recital as a separate 1-credit course.
DMA Recital
2. DMA Research Project
Enroll in 1-3 credits to bring course load total to 3 credits.
Oral Defense
The oral defense to be scheduled with the Doctoral Performance and Research Committee after ALL WORK is complete.

Piano Performance Track1

Doctoral Level Piano Performance Applied Study16
4 semesters, 4 credits each semester
Doctoral Level-Piano
Literature6
Seminar in Piano Literature
Seminar in Piano Literature
Seminar in Duo Sonata Literature
Reference and Research Materials3
Music Research Methods and Materials
Musicology and Music Theory Courses9
At least one course must be taken in Musicology and one in Music Theory. 9 credits must be earned at UW-Madison.
For a summary of the courses eligible for this requirement refer to the last table on this page: DMA: Courses Qualifying for Musicology and Music Theory Requirement
Doctoral Minor9-12
9-12 credits in a field other than the major specialty. See the Doctoral Minors page or the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details.
Language Proficiency
One foreign language at intermediate level reading knowledge. French or German preferred. See Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details on meeting the Foreign Language Proficiency.
Students should note that the course credits as described above total 47 at minimum (including 4 recitals). Up to an additional 4 credits (including recitals and DMA Research Project) may be needed to earn the degree minimum of 51 credits.
Preliminary Examinations
Preliminary Examinations occur in the semester all of the above requirements are fulfilled. See the Policies tab or, for full information on policies and procedures, the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for full information.
After preliminary examinations continuous registration for exactly three research-related credits is required. This may include both degree recitals (MUS PERF 999) and Research (MUSIC 999).
Doctoral Performance and Research
This body of work, comprising degree recitals and the DMA Research Project, is the core of the DMA degree.
1. Recitals
There are six required recitals: 1 Baroque-Classical, 1 Romantic, 1 Modern, 1 concerto performance, 1 ensemble recital, 1 final solo recital. One of these recitals (not the final solo recital) will be presented as a lecture recital. The lecture-recital and the final solo recital are presented after the preliminary examinations.
Enroll for each recital as a separate 1-credit course.
DMA Recital
DMA Research Project
Enroll in 1-3 credits to bring course load total to 3 credits.
PhD Diss/DMA Project
Oral Defense
The oral defense to be scheduled with the Doctoral Performance and Research Committee after ALL WORK is complete.

Piano Performance and Pedagogy Track1

Doctoral Level Piano Applied Study8
2 semesters, 4 credits each semester
Doctoral Level-Piano
Piano Pedagogy9
Seminar in Piano Pedagogy 2
Independent Work
Piano Pedagogy Workshop 3
Practicum in Advanced Studio Teaching-Piano
Other Courses in the Major
MUS PERF 542 Advanced Accompanying2
or MUS PERF 742 Doctoral Level Private Instruction in Accompanying
OR select from the following to total 2 credits
MUS PERF 542 Advanced Accompanying2-3
Advanced Ensemble-Woodwind
Advanced Ensemble-Brass
Advanced Ensemble-String
Literature3
Seminar in Piano Literature
Seminar in Duo Sonata Literature
Reference and Research Materials3
Music Research Methods and Materials
Musicology and Music Theory Courses9
At least one course must be taken in Musicology and one in Music Theory. 9 credits must be earned at UW-Madison.
For a summary of the courses eligible for this requirement refer to the last table on this page: DMA: Courses Qualifying for Historical Musicology and Music Theory Requirement
Doctoral Minor9
9-12 credits in a field other than the major specialty. See the Doctoral Minors page or the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details.
Language Proficiency
One foreign language at intermediate level reading knowledge. French or German preferred. See Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details on meeting the Foreign Language Proficiency.
Students should note that the course credits as described above total 41 at minimum (including 2 recitals). Up to an additional 10 credits (including recitals, MUSIC 752, and DMA Research Project) may be needed to earn the degree minimum of 51 credits.
Preliminary Examinations
Preliminary Examinations occur in the semester all of the above requirements are fulfilled. See the Policies tab or, for full information on policies and procedures, the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for full information.
After preliminary examinations continuous registration for exactly three research-related credits is required. This may include both degree recitals (MUS PERF 999) and Research (MUSIC 999).
Doctoral Performance and Research
This body of work, comprising degree recitals and the DMA Research Project, is the core of the DMA degree.
1. Recitals
4 recitals are required. At least half of all recital repertoire must be solo. The lecture-recital and 1 additional recital may be performed after preliminary examinations.
Enroll for each recital as a separate 1-credit course. 4
2. DMA Research Project
Enroll in 1-3 credits to bring course load total to 3 credits.
PhD Diss/DMA Project
Oral Defense
The oral defense is to be scheduled with the Doctoral Performance and Research Committee after ALL WORK is complete.

String Performance Track1

Doctoral Level Instrument Applied Study16
4 semesters, 4 credits each semester
Enroll for the course corresponding to the major instrument: 2
Doctoral Level-Violin
Doctoral Level-Viola
Doctoral Level-Cello
Doctoral Level-Guitar
Reference and Research Materials3
Music Research Methods and Materials
Musicology and Music Theory Courses9
At least one course must be taken in Musicology and one in Music Theory. 9 credits must be earned at UW-Madison.
For a summary of the courses eligible for this requirement refer to the last table on this page: DMA: Courses Qualifying for Musicology and Music Theory Requirement
Doctoral Minor9-12
9-12 credits in a field other than the major specialty. See the Doctoral Minors page or the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details.
Language Proficiency
One foreign language at intermediate level reading knowledge. French or German preferred. See Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details on meeting the Foreign Language Proficiency.
Students should note that the course credits as described above total 41 at minimum (including 4 recitals). Up to an additional 10c credits (including recitals and DMA Research Project) may be needed to earn the degree minimum of 51 credits.
Preliminary Examinations
Preliminary Examinations occur in the semester all of the above requirements are fulfilled. See the Policies tab or, for full information on policies and procedures, the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for full information.
After preliminary examinations continuous registration for exactly three research-related credits is required. This may include both degree recitals (MUS PERF 999) and Research (MUSIC 999).
Doctoral Performance and Research
This body of work, comprising degree recitals and the DMA Research Project, is the core of the DMA degree.
1. Recitals
6 recitals are required: 1 sonata recital, 1 string chamber recital, 1 chamber music recital with piano, 1 concerto or unaccompanied recital, these before preliminary examinations; after preliminary examinations, 1 lecture-recital and 1 final solo recital.
Enroll for each recital as a separate 1-credit course.
DMA Recital
2. DMA Research Project
Enroll in 1-3 credits to bring course load total to 3 credits.
Oral Defense
The oral defense is to be scheduled with the Doctoral Performance and Research Committee after ALL WORK is complete.

Vocal Performance Track1

Doctoral Level Voice Applied Study16
4 semesters, 4 credits each semester
Doctoral Level-Voice
Other Courses in the Major
MUSIC 792 Seminar in Vocal Literature 2, 33
MUSIC 749 Seminar in Vocal Techniques 32
MUSIC 467
MUSIC 468
Language Diction for Singing I
and Language Diction for Singing II 3
4
Reference and Research Materials3
Music Research Methods and Materials
Musicology and Music Theory Courses9
At least one course must be taken in Musicology and one in Music Theory. 9 credits must be earned at UW-Madison.
For a summary of the courses eligible for this requirement refer to the last table on this page: DMA: Courses Qualifying for Musicology and Music Theory Requirement
Doctoral Minor9-12
9-12 credits in a field other than the major specialty. See the Doctoral Minors page or the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details.
Language Proficiency
The basis for doctoral study in voice is 2 semesters each of elementary French, German, and Italian. All students must meet this expectation and ALSO CONTINUE to the intermediate level in two of these languages.
Consult the voice faculty and the director of graduate studies for information on ways in which the language proficiency requirement may be satisfied.
Students should note that the course credits as described above total 50 at minimum (including 4 recitals). Up to one additional credit (including recitals and DMA Research Project) may be needed to earn the degree minimum of 51 credits.
Doctoral Performance and Research
This body of work, comprising degree recitals and the DMA Research Project, is the core of the DMA degree.
1. Performance
6 performance credits are required. 4 of the credits may be satisfied with the foillowing:
MUS PERF 999 DMA Recital (minimum 2 performances, maximum 4)1
MUSIC 556 University Opera (a major opera role) 42
MUSIC 556 University Opera (secondary opera role) 41
MUS PERF 999 DMA Recital (major oratorio role) 41
Remaining required performances follow the preliminary examinations:
MUS PERF 999 DMA Recital (lecture-recital)1
MUS PERF 999 DMA Recital (final solo recital, prepared independently)1
2. DMA Research Project
Enroll in 1-3 credits to bring course load total to 3 credits.
Oral Defense
The oral defense is to be scheduled with the Doctoral Performance and Research Committee after ALL WORK is complete.

Wind Conducting Track1

Doctoral Level Conducting Applied Study8
4 semesters, 2 credits each semester
Doctoral Level Conducting
Choral Conducting2
Advanced Conducting Seminar
Advanced Conducting
Reference and Research Materials3
Music Research Methods and Materials
Musicology and Music Theory Courses
At least one course must be taken in Musicology and one in Music Theory. 9 credits must be earned at UW-Madison.
For a summary of the courses eligible for this requirement refer to the last table on this page: DMA: Courses Qualifying for Musicology and Music Theory Requirement
Doctoral Minor9-12
9-12 credits in a field other than the major specialty. See the Doctoral Minors page or the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details.
Language Study
One foreign language at intermediate level reading knowledge. French or German preferred. See Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details on meeting the Foreign Language Proficiency.
Students should note that the course credits as described above total 35 at minimum (including 4 recitals). Up to an additional 16 credits (including recitals and DMA research project) may be needed to earn the degree minimum of 51 credits.
Preliminary Examinations
Preliminary Examinations occur in the semester all of the above requirements are fulfilled. See the Policies tab or, for full information on policies and procedures, the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for full information.
After preliminary examinations continuous registration for exactly three research-related credits is required.
Doctoral Performance and Research
This body of work, comprising degree recitals and the DMA Research Project, is the core of the DMA degree.
1. Recitals
5 recitals are required. The major professor will set specific expectations and parameters for the recitals. 4 recitals are typically performed prior to preliminary examinations.
Enroll for each recital as a separate 1-credit course.
DMA Recital
2. DMA Research Project
Enroll in 1-3 credits to bring course load total to 3 credits.
PhD Diss/DMA Project
Enroll in 1-3 credits to bring course load total to 3 credits.
Oral Defense
The oral defense is to be scheduled with the Doctoral Performance and Research Committee after ALL WORK is complete.

Woodwind Performance Track1

Doctoral Level Instrument Applied Study16
4 semesters, 4 credits each semester
Enroll for the course corresponding to the major instrument:
Doctoral Level-Flute
Doctoral Level-Oboe
Doctoral Level-Clarinet
Doctoral Level-Saxophone
Doctoral Level-Bassoon
Reference and Research Materials3
Music Research Methods and Materials
Musicology and Music Theory Courses
At least one course must be taken in Musicology and one in Music Theory. 9 credits must be earned at UW-Madison.
For a summary of the courses eligible for this requirement refer to the last table on this page: DMA: Courses Qualifying for Musicology and Music Theory Requirement
Doctoral Minor
9-12 credits in a field other than the major specialty. See the Doctoral Minors page or the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details.
Language Proficiency
One foreign language at intermediate level reading knowledge. French or German preferred. See Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for details on meeting the Foreign Language Proficiency.
Students should note that the course credits as described above total 40 at minimum (including 3 recitals). Up to 11 additional credits (including recitals and DMA Research Project) may be needed to earn the degree minimum of 51 credits.
Preliminary Examinations
Preliminary Examinations occur in the semester all of the above requirements are fulfilled. See the Policies tab or, for full information on policies and procedures, the Mead Witter School of Music Graduate Handbook for full information.
After preliminary examinations continuous registration for exactly three research-related credits is required. This may include both degree recitals (MUS PERF 999) and Research (MUSIC 999).
Doctoral Performance and Research
This body of work, comprising degree recitals and the DMA Research Project, is the core of the DMA degree.
1. Recitals
5 recitals are required: 1 solo recital, 2 ensemble performances in which the major woodwind instrument plays a prominent role, these before preliminary examinations; after preliminary examinations, 1 lecture-recital and 1 final solo recital.
Enroll for each recital as a separate 1-credit course.
DMA Recital
2. DMA Research Project
Enroll in 1-3 credits to bring course load total to 3 credits.
PhD Diss/DMA Project
Enroll in 1-3 credits to bring course load total to 3 credits.
Oral Defense
The oral defense is to be scheduled with the Doctoral Performance and Research Committee after ALL WORK is complete.

DMA Courses Qualifying for Musicology and Music Theory Requirements

This list of approved courses is valid for all DMA major tracks EXCEPT Composition. Refer to the Requirements table, Composition track for details.
For all DMA programs 9 credits of Musicology and Music Theory courses are required. These courses must be taken at UW-Madison. Previous coursework at another institution cannot substitute for any part of this 9-credit requirement.
Musicology Courses
Eligible musicology courses include the following:
MUSIC/​AFROAMER  400 Music Cultures of the World: Africa, Europe, the Americas3
MUSIC/​FOLKLORE  401 Musical Cultures of the World3
MUSIC/​FOLKLORE  402 Musical Cultures of the World3
MUSIC/​FOLKLORE  404 Music of S.E. Asia: Tradition, Innovation, Politics, and Religion3
MUSIC 405 Seminar: Cultural Study of Music3
MUSIC 411 Survey of Music in the Middle Ages3
MUSIC 412 Survey of Music in the Renaissance3
MUSIC 413 Survey of Music in the Baroque Era3
MUSIC 414 Survey of Music in the Classic Era3
MUSIC 415 Survey of Music in the Romantic Era3
MUSIC 416 Survey of Music in the Twentieth Century3
MUSIC 419 Music in the United States3
MUSIC 497 Special Topics in Music (topic approval by musicology faculty required)3
MUSIC/​AFROAMER  509 Seminar in Afro-American Music History and Criticism3
MUSIC 511 Historical Performance Practices3
MUSIC 513 Survey of Opera3
MUSIC/​FOLKLORE  515 Proseminar in Ethnomusicology3
MUSIC 821 Historical Music Theories 13
MUSIC 822 Historical Music Theories 23
MUSIC 911 Seminar in Musicology3
MUSIC 923 Seminar in Notation3
Other courses do not fulfill this requirement unless specifically approved by the musicology faculty.
Music Theory Courses
Eligible music theory courses include the following:
MUSIC 331 Jazz Improvisation3
MUSIC 497 Special Topics in Music (topic approval by music theory faculty required)1-3
MUSIC 523 Orchestration I3
MUSIC 621 Renaissance Polyphony3
MUSIC 622 Baroque Counterpoint3
MUSIC 623 Form and Analysis2-3
MUSIC 624 Form and Analysis II2-3
MUSIC 725 Music Theory Pedagogy3
MUSIC 821 Historical Music Theories 13
MUSIC 822 Historical Music Theories 23
MUSIC 823 Schenkerian Analysis3
MUSIC 824 Post-tonal Analysis3
MUSIC 921 Current Issues in Musical Thought 13
MUSIC 926 Topics in Music Analysis 23
MUSIC 927 Seminar in Composition3
Other courses do not fulfill this requirement unless specifically approved by the music theory faculty.
Third Course: Music Education Course Option
For DMA students who have taken 1 musicology and 1 music theory course, there is an option to include, as the third course, one of the following music education courses:
CURRIC 945 Seminar in Music Education2-3
CURRIC 946 Past Perspectives on Music Education3
CURRIC 947 Current Issues in Music Education3
CURRIC 948 Diversity Issues in Music Teaching3

Graduate School Policies

The Graduate School’s Academic Policies and Procedures provide essential information regarding general university policies. Program authority to set degree policies beyond the minimum required by the Graduate School lies with the degree program faculty. Policies set by the academic degree program can be found below.

Major-Specific Policies

Graduate Program Handbook

The Graduate Program Handbook is the repository for all of the program's policies and requirements.

Prior Coursework

Graduate Work from Other Institutions

No more than 6 credits may be approved for graduate coursework taken at other institutions.

UW–Madison Undergraduate

The Graduate School allows departments to review requests to count up to 7 credits of undergraduate work at UW–Madison toward graduate program requirements, but this is rarely approved by the School of Music faculty.

UW–Madison University Special

Some students may have completed coursework at 300-level or above at UW–Madison as a Special Student; with program approval coursework so taken may be considered to fulfill up to 6 credits of graduate program requirements. However the Graduate School mandates that fees be paid in these cases. 

ProbatioN

DMA Students who fail to make satisfactory progress in any of the following four areas: Grades, Course Load, Time Constraints, or Exams will be notified in writing by the DGS. At the end of the second semester of failing to make satisfactory progress the student is placed on Probation effective the next semester. This action suspends financial aid (but does not affect loans or work-study). See details in the Satisfactory Progress for Doctoral Students.

ADVISOR / COMMITTEE

All programs provide for faculty from several disciplines to follow the student’s progress through the degree, provide mentorship along the way, and assess the student’s success in reaching expected learning outcomes. Committee structures differ among degrees and majors.

DMA students have a doctoral performance and research committee. This group of four faculty follows the student’s work throughout the degree work, evaluating degree recitals as well as the doctoral research project. The committee also serves as the examination committee. The DPRC is comprised of the major professor and at least three others, two of whom must be graduate faculty and one of whom must be from a program that is not the major.

CREDITS PER TERM ALLOWED

15 credits

Time Constraints

Graduate students in DMA or Ph.D. programs are allowed a maximum of four calendar years from the date entering the program to complete all course work requirements and successfully pass the preliminary examinations. The candidate must complete the dissertation (Ph.D.) or doctoral performance and research (DMA) within five years after passing the preliminary examinations.

Other

n/a

Graduate School Resources

Take advantage of the Graduate School's professional development resources to build skills, thrive academically, and launch your career. 

1. Produces public performances of cohesive programs of music in which original ideas are communicated clearly and energetically.

2. Creates compositions and/or performances that clearly reflect well-developed original musical ideas.

3. Applies deep knowledge of technique, style, and cultural contexts to performance or creation of music.

4. Effectively expresses ideas both verbally and in writing so as to foster understanding among colleagues.

5. Demonstrates breadth within learning experience in an area o study outside the principal field of performance or composition.

6. Fosters ethical and professional conduct both in individual creative work and in collaborative endeavors.

Faculty: Professors Cook (director), Blasius, Calderón, Chisholm, Crook, DiSanza, Dill, Doing, Fischer, Fulmer, Hetzler, Hyer, Johnson, Karp, Koza, Leckrone, Perry, Rowe, Schaffer, Schwendinger, Stowe, Swack, B. Taylor, C. Taylor, Teeple, Thimmig, Vardi, Vallon; Associate Professors Dobbs, Grabois, Wallmann; Assistant Professors Altino, Lee, Ronis

The faculty of the Mead Witter School of Music is a distinguished group of educators, performing musicians, and active scholars. The backgrounds of performance faculty include rich experiences as professional musicians, researchers, recording artists, and entrepreneurs. Faculty in music education have particular insight into their field as a result of their backgrounds as school educators, performers, and scholars. In areas such as music theory and musicology, the musical community has high regard for the past and current contributions to the study of musical theory, historical perspectives on music, the role of music in societies around the world, and the unique contributions of American musicians. Teaching is a priority for the faculty, who are readily accessible to students for advice and support. Faculty, staff, and students cooperate in extraordinary ways with joint ventures that reach across disciplines both in research or instruction. 

Accreditation

National Association of Schools of Music

Accreditation status: Accredited. Next accreditation review: 2022–2023