The College of Music’s Graduate Certificate in Music Theory offers a curricular framework for advanced studies in music theory, along with formal acknowledgement of these studies without the more extended requirements of the master’s in music theory.
Students applying for the certificate should have an interest in music theory and theory pedagogy, facility with common analytical techniques and an ability to learn advanced concepts. Master’s, doctoral and PhD graduates with theory certificates will have an advantage for positions that include theory and aural skills teaching. To begin the application for the Certificate in Music Theory, please complete the Music Theory Declaration Form.
Venezuelan Andres Orco-Zerpa is a DMA guitar student in our Thompson Jazz Studies Program with a special interest in advanced rhythm and meter in jazz; as such, he’s also pursuing a Certificate in Music Theory. “Through the certificate program, I received a multidisciplinary education that has made me a more well-rounded musician and educator,” he says.
The curriculum consists of the 12 credit hours below. All MM and DMA degree programs already require at least three credit hours in music theory. Students pursuing this graduate certificate would typically enroll in an additional six to nine credit hours. For current students, courses taken before applying for the certificate will be counted.
3 credits. Music Theory Pedagogy (MUSC 6051)
6 credits. Two out of three of the following:
Schenkerian Analysis (MUSC 5151)
Post-tonal Theory + Analysis (MUSC 5071)
A further elective from Topics in Music Analysis (MUSC 5151) for MM students, or Advanced Topics in Music Theory (MUSC 6801) for DMA and PhD students.
3 credits. One-semester of Special Studies, leading to a research project and public presentation of research.
The program is only available to MM, DMA and PhD students enrolled in the College of Music. Students may apply for the program with their application to the college or once they are already enrolled. The application will consist of
Statement of purpose
Two scholarly writing samples
Academic performance in graduate courses at CU Boulder will also be taken into account for students who are already enrolled.