Theses and Documents

Music History

The Music History degree plan requires a thesis. A thesis is an extended project in which the writer explores a unique subject resulting in new contributions to knowledge in a specific area. Theses must conform in all details of format with the guidelines in the “Graduate Handbook for Theses and Dissertations” published by the College of Graduate Studies.


The Composition degree plan requires a thesis.  In this case, a large-scale original work satisfies the thesis requirement. 

Performance/Accompanying/Piano Pedagogy and Performance Studies

Non-thesis degree plans require a document. A document is a written project, in the range of 25-30 pages long, which directly supports the final degree project, whether recital or composition. The document should be of a depth that would be appropriate for publication in a professional journal.

For theses and documents, the School of Music uses the most recent edition of "A Manual for Writers of Research Papers, Theses, and Dissertations" by Kate L. Turabian (University of Chicago Press) as the standard reference work for issues of form and procedure for theses and documents in most areas of music.

All students are strongly urged to consult with their major professors about the timeline recommended to ensure timely completion of the document or thesis.

Both theses and documents, in final draft form, must be delivered in individual copies to all committee members at least four weeks prior to the oral exam. Once the orals are passed, theses are submitted to the College of Letters, Arts, and Social Science for approval one week before the published deadline for submission to the COGS. Documents, once approved by the committee, are submitted to the Music Office.