Music: Music Composition - MA
The Master of Arts in Composition offers the opportunity for in-depth study of music composition. Some graduates of the program will go on to earn a doctoral degree in composition or music theory, while others will seek careers as film and theater composers, sound designers, teachers and free-lance writers. The program is responsive to the individual ambitions of its students in order to prepare them for their professional careers in the best way possible.
Completion of the program requires a final project in an area of interest. Projects can take several forms (for example, a composition, a composition recital, a lecture recital, a research paper, etc.) and are usually proposed and developed in conjunction with the Graduate Studies Coordinator and a faculty member who serves as the project advisor. A final oral examination assesses the candidate's ability to apply compositional skills, and/or to describe advanced independent work of particular interest.
Applying to graduate school has never been easier! To complete your application, you will need:
- $65 application fee (pay online)
- Prior college transcripts
- Letters of Recommendation (3)
- Personal Statement/Essay Questions
- Additional Department Requirements
Students claiming in-state residency must also submit a Proof of Residence form. This form is not required to complete your application, but you will need to submit it after you are offered admission or you will not be able to register for classes.
Deadlines: Applications must be completed by the following deadlines in order to be reviewed for admission:
- Fall: February 15 (for funding); April 1 (recommended US; final international); July 1 (final)
- Spring: December 1
- Summer: N/A
- Special: N/A
New England Regional: VT
Accelerated Masters Eligible: Yes
Supplemental Materials: The Details
If you attended UNH after September 1, 1991, and have indicated so on your online application, we will retrieve your transcript internally; this includes UNH-Durham, UNH-Manchester and UNH Non-Degree work. However, if you attended GSC, Keene or Plymouth, then you must request and submit original transcripts from those institutions.
If you did not attend UNH, or attended prior to September 1, 1991, then you must request one official transcript be sent directly to our office from the Registrar's Office of each college/university attended. International transcripts must be translated into English. We accept transcripts both electronically and in hard copy:
- Electronic Transcripts: Please have your institution send the transcript directly to email@example.com. Please note that we can only accept copies sent directly from the institution.
- Paper Transcripts: Please send hard copies of transcripts to: UNH Graduate School, Thompson Hall- 105 Main Street, Durham, NH 03824. You may request transcripts be sent to us directly from the institution or you may send them yourself as long as they remain sealed in the original university envelope.
Letters of Recommendation: 3 Required
Recommendation letters submitted by relatives or friends, as well as letters older than one year, will not be accepted.
Personal Statement/Essay Questions:
Prepare a brief but careful statement regarding: 1) reasons you wish to do graduate work in this field, including your immediate and long-range objectives, and 2) your specific research or professional interest and experiences in this field.
Statements must be included with your submitted application.
Additional Department Requirements:
Accelerated Masters program: Applicants must have a minimum 3.4 GPA, Applicants are required to submit 2 letters of reference from UNH Faculty.
Entrance Exam: An exam in music theory and music history is required. The exam will be sent to you upon completion of your on-line application with the graduate school. You are required to arrange for an instructor at your current institution or similarly qualified person to proctor the exam for you. Please contact the Department of Music graduate coordinator for details.
Writing Sample: A sample of academic writing, preferably on a musical subject, should be submitted to the Department of Music graduate coordinator, either electronically (pdf file via email) or in hard copy. This might be a paper that has been submitted for a course.
Composition: Applicants should submit a portfolio of compositions, and arrange for an interview with Professor Christopher Kies or Professor Michael Annicchiarico.
All applicants are encouraged to contact programs directly to discuss program specific application questions.
Additional Details for International Applicants
Prospective international students are strongly encouraged to go through our international pre-application process and are required to submit TOEFL (or equivalent) examination scores. Please note that TOEFL scores may be waived if English is your first language. If you wish to request a waiver, then please visit our Test Scores webpage for more information.