Degree Requirements

Master of Music: Musicology

Diagnostic Evaluation

An interview during orientation with the Program Coordinator to review the student’s background in Western music history, world music cultures, languages, and bibliographic skills in lieu of a placement examination. Each student must bring a transcript or list of all music courses from the previous program(s) of study. Course work will be recommended according to individual background and future goals.

Program of Study (18 units)

A typical program is comprised of musicology courses at the 300- and 400 levels, and will include course work in Western music history, world music cultures, and popular/media music. The majority of courses must be at the 400 level, and at least eight must be true graduate seminars (400-level with Seminar designation and no 300-level cross-listing).

Each student's curriculum will be individualized according to the Diagnostic Evaluation. Students may, with permission of the Program Coordinator, take academic courses outside of Musicology. Performance study may not be applied toward this degree. Independent studies may not usually be applied to this degree. Exceptions must be made in writing by the Program Coordinator and documented with Graduate Services. Independent studies may not be used to prepare for the Final Research Presentation.

The Musicology MM Curriculum

Note: not all courses are offered every year

MUSICOL. 323/423 Fieldwork Methods
MUSICOL. 326 Topics in Asian Music
MUSICOL. 327 Topics in African Music
MUSICOL. 328 Topics in Music of the Americas
MUSICOL. 329/429 Topics in Middle Eastern Music
MUSICOL. 330/430 Russian Fairy Tale Opera
MUSICOL. 331/431 Music and Orientalism
MUSICOL. 332/432 Music and the Gypsies
MUSICOL. 333/433 Topics in Popular Music
MUSICOL. 335 Electives (topics vary)
MUSICOL. 340/440 Topics in Gender & Music
MUSICOL. 341/441 Music & the Visual Arts
MUSICOL. 342/442 Authenticity
MUSICOL. 343 Shakespeare & Music
MUSICOL. 344/444 Topics in Film Music
MUSICOL. 345/445 From Literature to Opera to Film
MUSICOL. 346 Composer Topics
MUSICOL. 350 Medieval Music
MUSICOL. 351/451 Topics in Sixteenth-Century Music
MUSICOL. 352/452 Topics in Seventeenth-Century Music
MUSICOL. 353/453 Topics in Eighteenth-Century Music
MUSICOL. 354/454 Topics in Nineteenth-Century Music
MUSICOL. 355/455 Topics in Twentieth-Century Music
MUSICOL. 435 Graduate Seminar (topics vary)
MUSICOL. 460 Notation/Editing/Performance Seminar
MUSICOL. 490 Colloquium (all students must register each quarter for this non-credit course)

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Foreign Languages

Reading knowledge of French or German or other language is strongly recommended for those who plan to pursue the PhD; two-year MM students will be required to pass one reading examination in a language of their choice. In order to prepare for this examination, undergraduate language courses may be taken through Northwestern’s Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences. These may not, however, be among the 18 units counted towards the MM degree.

Milestone Project

In consultation with the Musicology Program Coordinator, MM students will develop a milestone research project over the course of their first year. The resulting document should represent the student's best work to date and be suitable for submission with PhD program applications.

Final Research Presentation

The public professional presentation of original research completed in the course of study for the degree, to be given during the regularly scheduled Musicology Colloquium in of spring quarter. The paper is to be a succinct revision of a research paper submitted for a Musicology course of the student’s choosing and should take 20 minutes to present. One week before the presentation, the student must submit a conference-style abstract for circulation to the Musicology Colloquium e-list, and should expect to respond to questions from the audience following the presentation.

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