Graduate Division

Curricula for Graduate Degrees

Music Theory

Doctor of Philosophy in Music Theory (through University Graduate School)

Admission Requirements

A master’s degree in music theory or musicology or the demonstrated equivalent. Students with outstanding credentials may apply directly from a bachelor’s degree. For additional information, see "Admission Requirements" in the Graduate Division section of this bulletin.


36-66 credit hours. Students with a completed master’s degree must complete a minimum of 36 credit hours in the major field, including dissertation. Students admitted directly from the bachelor’s degree must complete at least 66 credit hours in the major field.

Foundation Courses

Demonstrated proficiency in the content of the following courses:

  • T551 Analytical Techniques for Tonal Music (3 cr.)
  • T555 Schenkerian Analysis (3 cr.)
  • T556 Analysis of Music Since 1900 (3 cr.)
  • T565 Stylistic Counterpoint: Variable Topics (3 cr.)
  • T591 Music Theory Pedagogy (3 cr.)

Students may demonstrate proficiency through methods determined by the department such as examination or submission of a portfolio based on previous coursework, or by completion of the above courses. Proficiency demonstrated through means other than taking the courses listed requires approval of the department chairperson and the director of graduate studies.

Advanced Courses

  • T623-T624 History of Western Music Theory I-II (3-3 cr.)
  • T658 Seminar in Music Theory: Variable Topics (3-3-3-3 cr.)
  • T550 Readings in Music Theory* (3 cr.)
  • 3 credit hours chosen from T658 Seminar in Music Theory: Variable Topics (3 cr.), T561 Music Theory: Variable Topics (3 cr.), T619 Projects and Problems in Music Theory (3 cr.), or another graduate course approved by the department chairperson and director of graduate studies.
  • T650 Dissertation Proposal Workshop (1 cr.)
  • T700 Dissertation in Music Theory (2-26 cr.)

* Students who have already fulfilled the T550 requirement must take 3 credit hours of T658, T561, or T619, or another graduate course approved by the department chairperson and director of graduate studies.

Public Lecture

T659 Public Lecture (0 cr.). The public lecture must be completed before scheduling the oral qualifying examination.

Minor and Other Required Credits

24 credit hours. 12 credit hours must be a minor in music history and literature, musicology, or ethnomusicology. For the other 12 credit hours, see “Structure of Doctoral Curricula” under General Requirements for Doctoral Degrees in this bulletin.

Tool Subjects
  • M539 Introduction to Music Bibliography (2 cr.) with a grade of B or higher
  • Reading knowledge of one non-English language as demonstrated by:
    • examination
    • grades of B or higher in two semesters of reading courses at the graduate level
    • receiving, in the cases of Catalan, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian, or Spanish, a grade of B (3.0) or higher in a literature or civilization course at Indiana University numbered 300 or higher (exclusive of individual readings and correspondence courses) in which the reading is done in the foreign language
    • demonstration of proficiency in one research skill, approved by the department and the director of graduate studies of the Jacobs School of Music.

Academic Bulletins

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Previous Bulletins

Students are ordinarily subject to the curricular requirements outlined in the Bulletin in effect at the start of their current degree. See below for links to previous Bulletins.