Master of Music

A group of students looking over a canyon

Program Information

The Master of Music degree consists of a core of courses which serve as a common foundation and a set of more specialized courses in one of five concentrations: composition, music history and literature, performance, conducting, and music education. The degree may be used as a preparation for doctoral studies in music, or it may serve as a terminal degree. Minimum credits for each concentration is 45.


The composition concentration includes course work in composition, music history, and music theory as well as a thesis (original composition). Ensembles, studio instruction, and course work in conducting are also available.

Music History and Literature

The music history and literature concentration includes seminars in music history, work in notation, courses in music theory, performance (including the Collegium Musicum), and a written thesis.


The performance concentration includes vocal or instrumental studio instruction, work with small and large ensembles, and course work in music history and music theory. Pianists may emphasize solo performance, pedagogy, or accompanying. Studies in jazz areas are available.


The conducting concentration includes course work in conducting, music history, and music theory, and a conducting practicum to fulfill the thesis requirement. Ensembles and studio instruction are also available.

Music Education

The music education concentration includes courses in music education, music history, and music theory courses. Courses within the Woodring College of Education are permissible, as well. Ensembles and studio instruction are also available. The thesis can be a written project, a recital, or a conducting practicum.


To prepare students for professional-level work in music, as performers (singers, instrumentalists, or conductors), composers, scholars, educators, or in a combination of these areas.

Application Requirements

  • All applicants must complete the Graduate School's ApplyWeb application and pay the $100 application fee.
  • Within the application you will be prompted to upload an unofficial transcript from each institution attended. If admitted, you will be asked to provide official transcripts.
  • Additional application materials are specified below. Applications will not be forwarded to the department for review until all required materials have been received by the Graduate School.
  • International Applicants: Please review the requirements for information regarding Degree Equivalency, English Language Proficiency and student VISA requirements.

Additional Application Requirements

The Master of Music program offers concentrations in Composition, Performance, History and Literature, Conducting, and Music Education. See the Master of Music website for concentration-specific submission requirements.

  • Statement of Purpose (optional)
  • Three (3) Letters of Reference
  • Placement examination: see the Master of Music website for details
  • Interview and/or Audition
  • Additional concentration-specific requirements as specified on the Master of Music website
WWU graduate June Bash

The composition faculty at WWU are all great composers, teachers, and mentors. They don't just teach theory, harmony, form, analysis and whatnot; they teach how to think musically.

June Bash
Master of Music, 2015