University of Southern California
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Graduate Degrees

Master of Arts

This degree is under the jurisdiction of the Graduate School. Students should also refer to the Graduate School section of this catalogue for general regulations.

Departmental Requirements

Applicants will be evaluated on the basis of scores on the Graduate Record Examinations, transcripts of previous college courses, a research paper and letters of reference.

Regular (classified) standing is achieved when the general test of the Graduate Record Examinations has been taken, and when the Music Graduate Entrance Examinations have been completed satisfactorily. Remedial course work, if recommended, may be substituted for repetition of examinations.

Language Requirement

Students are required to demonstrate a reading knowledge by passing an examination in one foreign language chosen by the student from among French, German, Italian or Latin. This requirement must be passed prior to the comprehensive examination.


Applicants should have an undergraduate degree with a major in music or the equivalent, and a substantial background in languages, arts and letters.

Degree Requirements for the Music History and Literature Emphasis

MUHL 5702
MUHL courses numbered 579, 600-6996
Courses in history, language, literature or the arts other than music8
Courses drawn from: MUHL 500-699, MUCO 501 and MUCO 5028
Comprehensive examination0

Degree Requirements for the Early Music Performance Emphasis

MUEN 550 3
MUHL 570 (2), MUHL 572 (2), MUHL 574 (2), MUHL 575 (2), MUHL 589 (2), MUHL 591 (2), MUHL 594ab (2-2), 16
MPEM 450 (2), MPEM 553 (5)7
Elective in music2
Electives in letters, arts and sciences4

The thesis will include the planning, research, preparation and leadership of a full-length program in early music. This practical work will be supported by a written essay that deals, as appropriate, with historical data sources, authentic performance practices and a stylistic assessment of the repertoire that is performed. In lieu of a comprehensive examination, candidates for the Early Music Performance Emphasis will be required to pass periodic reviews to demonstrate progress.