2023-24 Catalogs

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Columbia, MO 65211
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MM in Music with Emphasis in Composition

This degree is designed to prepare the graduate for a career in composition, college teaching, or for doctoral study.MU offers numerous opportunities for collaboration with artists various mediums, community engagement in the creative process, and performance of works on and off campus. The graduate New Music Ensemble is dedicated to performing works of student composers studying at MU. Our annual Sinquefield Composition Prize gives one of our students the opportunity to have a work for large ensemble performed at the annual Chancellor's Concert. In addition we host a Student Composers Concert each spring, a Composers Forum, and a student chapter of Society of Composers, Inc. Our graduates have been admitted to some of the most prestigious doctoral programs in the country, and our students have won many competitions of the Music Teachers National Association, the Music Educators National Conference, and the prestigious Broadcast Music Incorporated (BMI) Student Composers.

Degree Requirements

The program requires successful completion of 32 credit hours.

Required Courses

MUS_H_LI 8313Introduction to Graduate Study3
MUS_THRY 7290Music Composition Seminar (1 credit per semester for 4 semesters)4
MUS_THRY 8215Composition VII (Taken twice for a total of 4 credit hours)4
MUS_GENL 8090Research in Music (Thesis)4

Additional coursework required as determined by student and advisor, to include:  Music Theory (6 credits), Music History (6 credits), Studio Instruction (5 credits) 

Additional Requirements

  • Comprehensive Examination (see School of Music website for additional information)
  • The student must assemble a faculty thesis committee and pass an oral examination regarding the thesis (a final, substantial original work)
  • All courses must be at the 7000 or 8000 level, and at least 15 credits must be at the 8000 level.
  • No more than one course with a grade lower than B- may count toward completion of the degree

Admission Criteria


  • Bachelor's degree in music (or demonstrated equivalent)
  • GPA of 3.0 in the last 60 hours
  • 3 credits of counterpoint
  • 2 credits of orchestration
  • 8 credits of composition
  • 16 credits of applied instruction (or equivalent)

If an applicant does not meet the required prerequisites, then appropriate course(s) may be added to the degree requirements.


For admission requirements, refer to the Graduate School's website for the minimum qualifications for the MM in Music. Because requirements vary, you must refer to a degree program’s graduate admission page to learn about specific admission criteria, application deadlines, eligibility, and the application process. Before official admissions to the University of Missouri, your application materials will be reviewed by both the Graduate School and the degree program to which you’ve applied.

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