University of Chicago Department of Music

Graduate Curriculum


Academic Year 2022–2023


  • Updated Musicianship activities to reflect changes by faculty vote (03/2022) [JI]
  • Updated incompletes and quality grades guidance to reflect Dean of Students procedures [JI]
  • Updated Language exams to reflect current procedures [JI]
  • Updated Comprehensive exam guidance to reflect current procedures; augmented descriptions of schedule and results [JI]
  • Added Pedagogical Training to reflect PTP limits, including for dual-degree students; incorporated GTFM workshops [JI]
  • Augmented Dissertation Development Seminar language to reflect current division (DPPS, DPS, DCS), enrollment procedures, and credit-granting (DPS only) by faculty vote (10/2021) [JI]
  • Struck all references to Music Theory Placement Exam, retired by theory area faculty vote (08/2022) [JI]
  • Updated course recommendations, musicianship, comprehensive exams, and satisfactory progress requirements for all subfields [JI]
  • Edited throughout for consistency and correctness [JI]

Academic Year 2020–2021


  • Updated coursework requirements for the computer music minor field. [SR]


  • Added ¶ at the very beginning of the Overview indicating that students will receive their degrees in “Music,” not in the name of their sub-discipline. [SR]

Academic Year 2016–2017


  • Language Exam requirements updated
  • Page deprecated; it has been replaced by the Academic Year 2017-2018 page

Autumn 2016


  • Two clarifications regarding Dissertation Proposal Seminar (DPS):
    • In the general discussion of the DPS, the underlined words have been removed: “In most cases, three quarters of DPS will count as one elective equivalent to a 40000-level seminar in the Department of Music.” As DPS always lasts three quarters, this will always be the case.
    • In the Satisfactory Progress sections for Ethnomusicology and History / Theory, the wording for Year 2 now has a new parenthetical insertion for clarification: “By the end of year 2 students should have completed all course requirements (with the exception of the Dissertation Proposal Seminar, typically taken in year 3).”


  • Removal of the following parenthesized clause concerning advanced musicianship exams: “(or in written form for students with no basic piano skills).” This clause principally affects theorists and composers, who should all have basic piano skills for the job market. Ethnomusicology students may make substitutions for both of their advanced skills (e.g., performing in an ensemble and making a transcription from an oral tradition), so those without basic piano skills will not be affected by this change. Historians may make one such substitution, and thus must realize one of their advanced musicianship exams at the keyboard. Again, this is in line with professional expectations for musicologists.


  • Corrections of course numbers for proseminars in music history. Some of these had been corrected already, but a few of the old numbers remained. Previously proseminars had been numbered from 32100 to 32800. Now there are four proseminars, which are:
    • MUSI 325xx: Music to 1500
    • MUSI 326xx: 1500–1800
    • MUSI 327xx: 1800–1900
    • MUSI 328xx: 1900 to the present
  • The xs in the numbers indicate that the last two digits of these course numbers may vary depending on the year.


  • This is the initial import into the new online platform.
  • The import incorporates recent changes to the curriculum, including:
  • Note that students who enrolled in Autumn 2015 and earlier may choose not to adopt these new comprehensive exam requirements, and may instead employ the format of the exam that was in effect when they first enrolled. All current students who have not yet taken exams are nevertheless strongly encouraged to take their analysis exams in June, rather than September.
  • These changes will go fully into effect for the cohort that enters in Autumn 2016.
    • This is our policy for all curriculum changes: one is only bound by the curriculum in effect in the Autumn term when one entered; one may, however, choose to adopt any new curriculum changes that go into effect after that point.
    • To this end, the curriculum on this site includes a “Yearly Archives” section, which will have static pages dedicated to each Autumn quarter’s curriculum, so that students can refer back to the curriculum from their entering fall term easily.
    • Changes over the course of a year will be logged in the live curriculum on the website, which will be labeled by its academic year (e.g., Academic Year 2015–2016). The date of the last update will be indicated on that page’s header as well, and all changes will be specified in this Changelog.

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