Frequently Asked Graduate Music Admission Questions

What previous academic work is required?

Any student who is admitted to a graduate program in music at the University of Oregon must currently possess the equivalent of a baccalaureate degree. Certificates and diplomas from music conservatories are not equivalent to baccalaureate degrees. Baccalaureate degrees include a substantial amount of work in general studies such as science, social science, humanities, and the arts.

Is it possible to be admitted to a graduate music degree program if my undergraduate degree is not in music?

Yes. Any student admitted to graduate studies in music, but does not have an undergraduate degree in music, must take the Graduate Entrance Exam in Music Theory and Musicology. This serves as a diagnostic tool for the Music Theory and Musicology areas to determine any necessary remedial course work in these areas. The remedial course work will be mandatory, and may include graduate and/or undergraduate courses as assigned.

Are applications only accepted for Fall Term, or is it possible to apply for other terms?

Applications are accepted for Fall Term only.

Are applications accepted after the December 10 deadline?

Consideration is given on a case by case basis. If you think you have an exceptional case, please send your explanation in an email to

Is it possible to apply directly to the doctoral program if I have a bachelor’s degree but not a master’s degree?

Yes, with faculty permission. Students who are interested in applying directly to a doctoral program without holding a master’s degree should contact the faculty in the degree area of interest to explain their circumstances and gauge their readiness for the doctoral program.

Is it possible to complete my graduate studies as a part-time student?

Yes. However, for a master's degree, the UO Graduate School requires that a minimum of thirty credits (applicable to degree requirements) be taken at UO over at least two terms for study. For doctoral students, of the 81 minimum credits required for a doctoral degree, at least 27 credits must be completed at the University of Oregon while classified as a doctoral student. During this residency period, the student is expected to make progress toward the degree by completing course credits and satisfying doctoral requirements.

All music graduate students must maintain continuous enrollment (a minimum of three graduate credits each term, excluding summers). Students are entitled to apply to be on leave from their program for a maximum of three terms for master's students and six terms for doctoral students.

Master's and doctoral students should also be mindful of the UO graduate school's 7-year deadline for completing all degree requirements.

Is it possible to complete two degrees, or add a specialization to my graduate degree?

Yes. SOMD graduate students frequently enroll in concurrent master's degree programs or add a specialization. Students who are interested in completing two master's degrees, or a concurrent master's and doctoral degree, should meet with the music graduate advisor during their first year of study. Additionally, any SOMD graduate student may add a specialization to their graduate degree. Students who are interested in adding a specialization should meet with the graduate advisor during their first year of study.