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Penn State College of Arts and Architecture
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Master of Arts in Music (+Integrated Undergraduate/Graduate Option)

If historical inquiry and musical analysis are your passion, this is your program.

The Master of Arts in Music offers three possible tracks: Musicology, Music Theory, or Music Theory and History. All tracks offer both breadth and depth in their curricula, integrating courses that allow students to hone their research, teaching, analysis, and writing skills while preparing for a range of careers or doctoral studies.


Program Application Deadline
The deadline for applications for AY 2022–23 is January 15, 2022.

To be assured full consideration, please apply by this deadline. Review individual program descriptions for details on program and admission requirements.


Take your passion for music study to the next level.

When you pursue an Master of Arts in Music at Penn State, you have the opportunity to work with leading scholars whose teaching and research are recognized across the University, the country, and beyond. The Musicology track (32 credits) emphasizes the development of a broad knowledge of music of all periods and at the same time cultivates one or more areas of specialization. The Music Theory track (32 credits) offers preparation in current modes of research and analysis from a music theoretical perspective. The Music Theory and History track (34 credits) is designed to integrate theoretical, analytical, and historical approaches to musical styles and works. All tracks include special topics courses and electives, allowing you to delve further into a particular area of interest or take classes in different subject areas that complement your primary focus. A thesis is required for graduation.

Is the Master of Arts in Music right for you?

The Master of Arts in Music allows students interested in further music study and possible careers in academia to hone in on their interests in musicology, music history, and music theory. It’s both a rewarding and rigorous degree program that introduces you to current modes of research and analysis in your field. Candidates should have completed a bachelor’s degree in music or music education with at least a 2.8 junior-senior GPA.

School of Music student performance on Timpani drums.
Studio recording of a violin performance.

Integrated Undergraduate/Graduate Degree Options

The School of Music’s integrated undergraduate/graduate (IUG) degree options enable gifted music students to streamline two degree programs as well as to pursue their research interests early in the curriculum, thus allowing them to develop a research focus in the fourth and fifth years. It’s an ideal program for high-achieving students ready to delve deeper into their music-related interests and who are potentially interested in doctoral study.

To be considered, students must have successfully completed a selection of Penn State courses in music theory, musicianship, and music history with a minimum GPA of 3.5, and overall GPA of 3.0. Students admitted to the IUG program are eligible for a graduate assistantship in their fifth year.

IUG Option: B.A. in Music + M.A.

The IUG program enables a select number of students to further their research interests at the undergraduate and graduate levels. By the end of the five-year program students receive two degrees, a B.A. in Music and an M.A. in Music.

Candidates for these Integrated Undergraduate-Graduate degrees must demonstrate a high level of aptitude and achievement in academic core courses and be highly motivated to pursue research projects with faculty.

The IUG program enables gifted music students to double count credits in two degree programs. As a result they will have developed a research focus during their fourth and fifth years, which will help them prepare for entry into doctoral programs at other institutions.

The Penn State Graduate School details IUG degree policies on its Integrated Undergraduate-Graduate (IUG) Degree Programs webpage.

IUG Option: B.M. in Performance + M.A.

The IUG program enables a select number of students to further their research interests at the undergraduate and graduate levels. By the end of the five-year program students receive two degrees, a B.M. in Performance and an M.A. in Music.

Candidates for these Integrated Undergraduate-Graduate degrees must demonstrate a high level of aptitude and achievement in academic core courses and be highly motivated to pursue research projects with faculty.

The IUG program enables gifted music students to double count credits in two degree programs. As a result they will have developed a research focus during their fourth and fifth years, which will help them prepare for entry into doctoral programs at other institutions.

The Penn State Graduate School details IUG degree policies on its Integrated Undergraduate-Graduate (IUG) Degree Programs webpage.

Considering the Master of Arts in Music? Consider this.

You have the opportunity to focus on Musicology, Music Theory, or Music Theory and History.

  • As a post-baccalaureate program, students are prepared to teach at the collegiate level.

  • Prepare for doctoral work with integrated seminars and many courses required by doctoral programs.

  • The M.A. provides an interdisciplinary approach to the field of music scholarship.

  • IUG options enable you to earn B.A./M.A. or B.M./M.A. degrees in five years.

Alumni Spotlight

Luke Nosal

Alumni Spotlight

Luke Nosal

Bachelor of Music 2018

Luke Nosal is the assistant conductor of the Queer Urban Orchestra in New York City. As a conductor and queer advocate, Nosal is known for leading ensembles with an eclectic style, dynamic interpretation, and deep passion while always using their platform to give visibility to issues in the LGBTQA community. In addition to a Bachelor of Music, Nosal earned a P.P.C. Orchestral Conducting in 2019.

Faculty Spotlight

Current and former students meeting together in the Penn State Theatre Convergence Lab.
Current and former students meeting together in the Penn State Theatre Convergence Lab.

Curtis Craig

Head, Sound Design

Curtis Craig (Sound Designer, Composer, Projection Designer) Recent work: Pipeline (Cleveland Playhouse, Actor’s Theatre of Louisville, Detroit Public Theatre), Indecent (Denver Center Theatre Company), world premier – Dominique Morriseau’s Mud Row (People’s Light & Theatre Company), world premier – The Great Leap (Denver Center Theatre Company, Seattle Rep), The Bacchae (Classical Theatre of Harlem), How to Catch Creation (Baltimore Center Stage, Philadelphia Theatre Company). In 2017, his sound design and composition from the Denver Center production of All The Way was awarded the Silver Medal in Sound Design at the World Stage Design exposition in Taipei, Taiwan. He previously won the Gold Medal in Sound Design for Pentecost in 2009 in Seoul, South Korea. His work can be heard at www.curtiscraig.com.

Curtis Craig working at sound board.
Place holder image for Events
Jan 23

Encore Performance: Professor Lusk's 68th Faculty Recital

Music I 130 Recital Hall
Venue: School of Music Recital Hall Admission Information: Free  Program Information: to be announced COVID Disclaimer: Please review our Health and Safety Guidelines before attending

Events

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BM Junior Degree Recital: Carter Houston, voice

Music I 130 Recital Hall
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Jan 23

Venue: School of Music Recital Hall Admission Information: Free  Program Information: to be announced COVID Disclaimer: Please review our Health and Safety Guidelines before attending


2022 Stuckeman School Career Day

HUB-Robeson Center
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Jan 24

The Stuckeman School Career Day is a vibrant event that enables professional firms to interact directly with the School’s award-winning students. The event presents a


School of Music presents: Diversity in 3D - Director’s Diversity Discussions

Music I 130 Recital Hall
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Jan 24

Venue: School of Music Recital Hall Admission Information: Free Available Online: School of Music Media Program Information: This inaugural event will be featuring Dr. Anthony Leach, Professor


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