MM - Composition Concentration


Admission to this area requires a bachelor's degree in music with a major in composition or the demonstrated equivalent. Background deficiencies must be satisfied before students may enroll in graduate composition courses. Applicants also must submit a portfolio including pieces — scores and live recordings (when appropriate) — demonstrating a variety of contemporary techniques, form and instrumentation. Approval for admission to candidacy is contingent upon the candidate’s demonstrated ability to complete a final project in composition.

Program Requirements

In addition to the core requirements for all MM programs, students must complete the coursework listed below. The program requires a total of 32 credit hours.

Course Title Hours
Core Required for all MM Concentrations
MUSC 852Introduction to Bibliography and Research3
MUSC 830Seminar in Music Theory3
Select 6 credit hours of the following in history and theory:6
Topics in Music Analysis
Seminar in Music History pre-1750
Seminar in Music History post-1750
Courses Required for Concentration
Select music or nonmusic courses 500 or above; may include applied lessons, ensembles, languages, etc. Courses must be approved by the faculty advisor12
Other Requirements
MUSC 860Advanced Composition (four credit hours total)4
MUSC 875Thesis Research2
MUSC 876Thesis2
Total Credit Hours32

In addition, students must complete a terminal project which must consist of the following:

  1. A composition of major proportions, or
  2. A body of works in various media.

Composition majors may be required by the thesis committee to have a work or works performed publicly. The final thesis must be notated using computer software and submitted digitally in keeping with the procedures established through the Graduate School of Wichita State University.

Applied Learning 

Students in the Masters of Music in composition program are required to complete an applied learning or research experience to graduate from the program. The requirement can be met by the completion of a thesis ( MUSC 876) that includes an original musical composition of substantial breadth.