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Graduate Student Guidelines

Upon enrollment at UL Lafayette, diagnostic tests in theory and history will be given to each graduate student before the start of classes. Students should see Dr. Kulp and Dr. Loewy for details concerning these tests. Should remedial work be necessary, MUS 481 G (Independent Study/Music Theory Review) must be taken.

Diagnostic exams in Music History are taken online at the start of graduate studies. This diagnostic test is administered by Dr. Kulp. All sections must be passed and the test may be retaken as necessary. Conducting and Applied Music proficiency tests may also be given before the start of the initial semester at the discretion of the instructor.

The Piano Proficiency test must be passed before the comprehensive exams and should be taken during the first year of study.

If a student has been admitted in conditional status, the student must petition for regular status after the completion of 12 hours. The form may be found at the Graduate School website.

Students may enroll in other music academic courses such as MUS 573 (Survey of Music Theory) or MUS 515 (Music Research and Bibliography) before successfully completing the diagnostic exams or the preparatory review course but generally may not enroll in any other music history or theory course before successful completion of those initial requirements. The Review Theory course (3 credits), MUS 481, does not count towards completion of the degree but may be used as part of the nine required graduate hours mandated for all Graduate Assistants.

A student must apply for candidacy after 12 graduate hours have been completed. A graduate committee of 3–4 graduate music faculty members should be chosen from those instructors with whom the student has most closely worked. The candidacy form may be downloaded from the Graduate School website at Signatures of the faculty members on the student committee must be obtained for completion of this form. The student’s committee of 3–4 faculty members include the areas of music history, theory, and the major concentration. The Chair of the Committee must be a member of the Graduate Faculty. The degree requirements found for each concentration of the MM degree at is a guide for course selection according to each student’s area of emphasis.

During the last semester of attendance, graduate students must successfully pass the Written and Oral Final Exams. The deadline for these exams is published in the University Academic Calendar. The graduate student’s committee will administer the exam questions in collaboration with the Chair of the Committee and the Graduate Coordinator.

The Comprehensive Written Exam is taken approximately two weeks before the Oral Exam. There will not be more than four questions. The time allotted is four hours. The questions are in the area of theory (one question taking approximately one hour) and two to three questions from the major area taking approximately three hours. Copies of all questions will be given to the Chair of the Committee and the Graduate Coordinator. Each faculty member will indicate whether or not books, resources, or the internet may be used for their particular question.

The Music History Final Exam is a listening/stylistic analysis test administered by Dr, Kulp that all graduate students must successfully pass. Students should register to take that test before the Comprehensive Exams/Written and Oral. This test may be taken at any time announced by Dr. Kulp. It may be taken before the final semester. Information for the test may be found on Moodle in the Grad Music course. If you do not see Grad Music as one of your graduate courses on your ULINK, please speak to Dr. Loewy or Dr. Kulp to be added. This site is where you will find important information.

Two weeks before a Graduate Recital, the candidate must present a Recital Hearing for the committee members. Program notes written by the candidate are to be presented at the Recital Hearing. Conducting majors may use an ensemble rehearsal time for the Recital Hearing requirement.

All full-time students must participate in a minimum of one major ensemble each semester whether or not the student has an assistantship.

Students in the Theory/Composition concentration must do a Defense of the Thesis in addition to the Comprehensive Exams. Deadlines need to be watched very carefully on the university academic calendar as the date for receipt of Final Copies of Thesis is monitored by the Graduate School. Generally students work back from that final date. The Defense and consequent editing as suggested by the Graduate Committee of the School of Music occurs two months prior. The Thesis is given to Graduate School for further editing one month prior.

Administrative requirements to be completed at the start of the last term:

  • Apply and pay fee for the degree (deadline each term is stated in the Academic Calendar, and the appropriate forms are found on the Graduate School website.
  • Do Graduation Checklist—form found at the Graduate School website.
  • Purchase cap and gown at the correct time at the Graduation Expo (be sure to check emails from REGISTRAR and GRAD SCHOOL)