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Application Procedures for Graduate Studies



Please see the page Financial Aid for Graduate Students in the Resources menu for information on how to apply for assistantships and/or scholarships.

Submissions to the Graduate Admissions Office

All applicants seeking admission to the Graduate Program in Music must submit forms and materials as described on the Graduate Division website by the Graduate Admissions deadline.

Forms may be submitted online or via the postal service at:

University of Hawaii at Manoa
Graduate Admissions Office
Spalding 354
2540 Maile Way
Honolulu, HI 96822
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Submissions to the Music Department

Graduate Applicants must also submit the following to the Music Department by the appropriate deadline:

  1. three confidential recommendation letters (not more than two years old) accompanied by a signed cover sheet sent directly by the referee to the address below and
  2. a copy of a transcript from each post secondary institution attended. Official transcripts sent directly from the institution in a sealed institutional envelope must be submitted after the student is admitted. Transcripts are not required for any coursework completed at any of the UH campuses since Graduate Admissions will obtain UH transcripts on behalf of applicants.
  3. statement of objectives
  4. Supporting materials specific to the intended area of specialization for Master's students, for PhD students.

These materials should be submitted to:

University of Hawai`i at Manoa
Music Graduate Admissions
2411 Dole St.
Honolulu, HI 96822

Graduate Division requires a minimum GPA of 3.0 for unconditional admission, and 2.7 for conditional admission. Most applicants amply exceed these minima.

Note: Students completing a master's degree in music at UHM and wishing to continue for a PhD in Music at UHM may apply by submitting the Petition for Admission to a Doctorate in Same Discipline to the Graduate Chair who will supervise an internal admissions process. This option is available only to students who move on the doctoral level with no break. Transcripts and Graduate Admissions Application form are not necessary, nor does the Graduate Division charge a fee.

International students should start to collect application materials and information ten to twelve months before they expect to begin their studies at the University of Hawai'i because of the extra time necessary to process applications, receive transcripts and schedule standardized tests.

For more information about music graduate programs, please contact Dr. Kate McQuiston, Music Graduate Chair.

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Test of English as a Second Language (TOEFL)

Applicants who are not native speakers of English must take the Test of English as a Second Language (TOEFL) and have the TOEFL score sent directly to the University of Hawai'i. Paper-based (P), computer-based (C), and internet-based (I) minimum requirements for UH Music are:

Other TOEFL score minimum requirements for the Music Department are:

TOEFL scores cannot be more than two years old. Scores are not required for admission if you have earned a bachelor's or advanced degree within the last five years at a regionally accredited or recognized institution in the United States, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Singapore or United Kingdom.

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Admissions Requirements for Master's Students

Applicants for admission to the master's degree program must have an undergraduate degree with a major in music or a bachelor's degree and evidence of an equivalent musical background; three confidential (not more than two years old) letters of recommendation on forms provided by the music department; and, for non-native speakers of English, a TOEFL score of 500 minimum for performance or 540 for other concentrations and 600 for teaching assistants (see TOEFL description above). A GRE General Test score is welcomed but not required. In the following concentrations, students must meet additional admission requirements:

Composition

Three original scores which are representative of various forms and media, and a recording of at least one of the three submitted works. Applicants must also have a bachelor's degree in music composition (or equivalency in course work) or submit music scores that demonstrate sufficient preparation for studies in composition at the master's level.

Ethnomusicology

A personal statement of 800 words minimum (3 pages) including the purpose of study. Background in cultural anthropology is desirable and, depending on the thesis research, may be required.

Music Education

Musicology

Sample of academic writing proficiency (a minimum 10-page term paper from an upper division music history course is preferred).

Performance

An audition of works representative of various musical styles.

Please see the recording instructions as well as audition information on the Auditions page. Recordings will not be reviewed until the application is complete.

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Admissions Requirements for PhD Students

Applicants for admission to the PhD program must present a master's degree in music (in the area of emphasis) or equivalent, an excellent academic record, two copies of a transcript from each post secondary institution attended (official transcripts sent directly from the institution in a sealed institutional envelope must be submitted after the student is admitted), three confidential letters of recommendation (not more than two years old) on forms provided by the music department, a sample of academic writing proficiency such as a recent term paper, and, for non-native speakers of English a TOEFL score of 560 or better. Please note, transcripts are not required for any coursework completed at any of the UH campuses since Graduate Admissions will obtain UH transcripts on behalf of applicants. At the doctoral level the Department welcomes a GRE score but does not require that applicants submit one.

In the following concentrations, students must meet additional admission requirements:

Composition

A master's degree in composition or equivalent, in terms of course work and original compositions. A score of a large-scale work, scores of two shorter works, and a recording of at least one of the above. Evaluation of these scores will constitute one part of the applicant's doctoral qualifying exam in composition (part 3).

Ethnomusicology

A master's degree in ethnomusicology or the equivalent in terms of coursework and fieldwork. A major research paper in ethnomusicology as evidence of extensive background in musical traditions other than Western art music.

Music Education

The evaluation of submitted teaching demonstrations (taped or in person) will constitute part of the applicant's qualifying examination in music education.

Musicology

A master's degree in musicology or a minimum of four graduate seminars in musicology. A 7,500 word research paper in English on a subject in historical musicology.

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