Jun 14, 2024  
2015-2017 Graduate Catalog 
2015-2017 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Master of Music in Conducting

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Department of Music, Theatre and Dance
207 Varner Hall    (map)
(248) 370-2030 • Fax (248) 370-2041

Jessica Payette
306 Varner Hall
(248) 370-3148

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Graduate Catalog Addendum  

Program description

The Master of Music in conducting is a 32-credit program designed to meet the needs of music teachers and other music professionals who are interested in developing high-level skills and understanding in instrumental and/or choral conducting.

Admission terms and application deadlines

Before an applicant’s file can be reviewed for full program admission, all application documents must be received in Graduate Study and Lifelong Learning by the semester deadlines listed below. Incomplete applications will not be sent to departments for admission review.

Current Deadlines

Beginning FALL 2017 Semester

  • February 15 (early) April 15 (regular) and July 15 (late) for fall semester
  • October 1 (early) and November 15 (regular) for winter semester
  • March 1 (regular) for summer semester
  • International applicants  

Application requirements

To be considered for graduate admission, applicants must submit all Graduate Application Requirements and additional department requirements by the published application deadlines:

  2. Additional department application requirements
  • Applicants must have earned a baccalaureate degree in music from a regionally accredited institution or proof of a U.S. equivalent degree for foreign educated applicants.
  • Two years of music theory, one year of music history and performance ability on instrument or voice; OR background equivalent to these requirements
  • Applicants must submit a written statement of professional goals.
  • Applicants must schedule and perform a successful audition that shows an appropriate level of prior experience and potential for success in the program.
          For choral conducting, contact Professor Michael Mitchell (mmitchel@oakland.edu).
          For instrumental conducting, contact Professor Gregory Cunningham (cunningh@oakland.edu).

Admission review and assessment

Admission to graduate study at Oakland University is selective. In making admission recommendations to the Master of Music in conducting program, the department assesses the potential of applicants for success in the program by examining their undergraduate records, goal statement, letters of recommendation, audition, and any other admission requirement established by the academic program.

Music history and theory placement

During the first year of graduate study, students participate in both music history and theory assessments to determine placement in graduate-level history and theory courses.

Assessment takes place during the week prior to the first semester of graduate study (Fall, Winter and Summer). Students are encouraged to review the preparation materials posted on the department web site prior to taking the assessments. Students may also contact the history and theory faculty for guidance about preparation materials and expectations.

Students whose work on the assessments indicates that they need further preparation should consult with the appropriate faculty and, at the beginning of the following semester, retake the portions of the assessments that were not satisfactory. Following the retake, students who have still not successfully completed the assessment will be required to complete remedial work prescribed by the department. Students whose work is satisfactory may then enroll in graduate history and theory courses for which they had not yet qualified. Any courses taken as part of the remedial work are not graduate courses and do not count toward the graduate degree. Students who still do not qualify after the remediation may be recommended for dismissal from the program.

Regardless of the results of these assessments, students may enroll in MUS 500 or any other music or music education graduate course during their first semesters. Enrollment in graduate-level music history and theory only is monitored by these assessments.  For information about these assessments, contact Professor Jessica Payette, coordinator of the master’s program at payette@oakland.edu.

Related links

Degree requirements

The Master of Music in conducting is awarded upon satisfactory completion of 32 credits in an approved program of study, successful completion of a culminating project, and successful performance on an oral examination.

Course requirements

a. Core requirements (8 credits)

Students may not use courses required for their major to fulfill the core requirements.

b. Major requirements (22 credits)

c. Exit (2 credits)

Culminating project

For candidates for a Master of Music in conducting, the culminating project is a master’s recital.

Students are urged to plan ahead for the recital. Obtain information about the expectations from your adviser early in the degree program.

Oral examination

After completion of the recital, the student will be asked to make a 10- to 15-minute presentation to his or her recital committee. This might include discussion of interpretation, editions chosen, historical aspects of the works chosen, and so on.

A satisfactory presentation of material reflective of a satisfactory recital constitutes passing the Oral Examination for the degree of Master of Music. Any student who does not pass this examination may be offered the examination again one semester later, upon the approval of the student’s adviser.

Satisfactory academic progress

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) is the term used to denote a student’s successful completion of coursework toward a certificate or degree. Federal regulations require the Office of Financial Aid to monitor Satisfactory Academic Progress for all financial aid recipients each semester.

Students who fall behind in their coursework, or fail to achieve minimum standards for grade point average and completion of classes, may lose their eligibility for all types of federal, state and university aid. Contact the Office of Financial Aid for additional details.

Good academic standing

All graduate students are expected to remain in good academic standing throughout the entire course of their graduate program. To be in good academic standing, a graduate student must make satisfactory progress toward fulfilling degree requirements, including the completion of critical degree milestones as set forth by the academic program. The student must also maintain a minimum semester and overall GPA of 3.0.

Good academic standing is a requirement for:

  • Holding a Graduate Assistantship
  • Receiving a fellowship or scholarship
  • Advancing to candidacy for a graduate degree
  • Going on a leave of absence
  • Obtaining a graduate certificate or degree from Oakland University.

Additionally, graduate students must meet all department academic standards which may be more stringent than the minimum set forth by the University.

Department requirements:  Because of the nature of graduate education, a high standard of work is expected.

  • A minimum grade of 3.0 is required in all courses.
  • Any student earning a grade below 3.0 will be placed on probationary status through a letter from the department indicating that earning second grade below 3.0 in any course will result in dismissal from the program.
  • In any course where a student earns a final grade lower than 3.0, the student must seek approval to repeat the course by submitting a Petition to Repeat a Course form OR seek approval to substitute a different course, appropriate to the degree requirements, by submitting a Petition for Course Waiver/Substitution.

Graduate students who are not in good academic standing for any reason are subject to probation and/or dismissal from further graduate study.

Related program information

Plan of study

All accepted applicants, in consultation with their assigned faculty program adviser, must develop a plan of study that details specific courses the students will use to satisfy their degree requirements. The plan of study must be approved by the faculty program adviser and submitted by the student to Graduate Study and Lifelong Learning.

Master’s and graduate certificate students must submit a department-approved plan of study by the end of their first semester of graduate coursework. Doctoral students must submit an approved plan of study prior to completion of the first year of coursework. (See the Graduate Student Responsibility  section of this catalog.)

Note:  Credit granted for successful completion of a course toward an undergraduate degree program may not be repeated for a graduate degree. If a substitution is approved, the minimum number of program-approved graduate credits will be required. A Petition of Exception - OU Course Waiver/ Substitution requesting the substitution must be approved.



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