department of music

Fine Arts Center, Suite E, 105 Upper College Road, Kingston, RI 02881

music@uri.edu401.874.2431 or 401.874.5955

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Graduate Program Admission

co-Admission Requirements

If you are considering applying for graduate admission, you may wish to consult with Joseph Parillo, director of Graduate Studies in Music at 401.874.2431.
  • An undergraduate degree or the equivalent, with a grade-point average of 2.50 or above
  • Auditions or audition tapes are required for the voice or instrument and conducting options for the M.M. in Music Performance, and for the performance/essay and conducting options for the M.M. in Music Education.
  • A portfolio of scores and tapes of original compositions is required for the composition option in either M.M. program.
  • The thesis option requires the submission of a major paper from undergraduate work or the equivalent.
  • All music education degree candidates at the graduate level must either be certified to teach public school music or must enroll concurrently in the URI Teacher Certification Program (TCP).

Placement Examinations

Students who completed their undergraduate degrees or the TCP in music at URI are exempt from the placement examination unless it has been three years or more since their graduation.

The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is not required for admission to our master’s degree program in music. However, students accepted into any Master of Music program at URI must take a post-admission placement examination in appropriate areas of music history and theory. Students entering the M.M. in Music Education are also tested in areas of music education. Students showing deficiencies can make up the deficiencies by retaking sections of the examination or by taking the appropriate undergraduate courses for non-program credit.

Programs of Study

All Master of Music degree candidates must prepare a program of study with the guidance of the director of Graduate Studies in Music, Joseph Parillo, (401-874-2431). This will then be submitted for approval by the dean of the graduate school.

The purpose of the program of study is to ensure that students, at an early stage, organize coherent, individualized plans for their coursework, research, and recitals. Credit hours may include formal coursework, independent study, research, preparation of a recital, essay, or thesis, and other scholarly activities as approved by the candidate’s major teacher, the director of Graduate Studies in Music and the dean of the graduate school.

The Master of Music degree may be earned through part-time or full-time study or a combination of both. Requirements for full-time students in the Master of Music program must be completed within a period of four calendar years. Requirements for part-time students allow, with special permission from the dean of the graduate school, seven calendar years for completion of the degree. Candidates must take at least 80% of the credits required for the degree at the University of Rhode Island.

Application Process

Application forms are available online.  Applicants may fill out the form online or download the form, fill it out, and mail it directly to:

Director of Graduate Studies in Music
Department of Music
University of Rhode Island
Kingston, RI 02881

Departmental acceptance is required prior to Graduate School admission. It is important for applicants to read entrance requirements carefully in the URI Music Handbook for Graduate Students. After the application is submitted, the following steps are taken:

  • Director of Graduate Studies in Music submits applications to the department’s Graduate Studies Committee.
  • The Committee reviews each transcript to determine the applicant’s qualifications and whether the content of the applicant’s undergraduate program can serve as a prerequisite for graduate study in music.
  • Applicant is informed by email whether the application is accepted by the Committee.
  • If the Graduate Studies Committee approves the application, any missing information, such as the results of an audition with the appropriate faculty in the applicant’s option area, is requested.
  • When all materials have been received, the application is forwarded to the Dean of Arts and Sciences for approval.
  • The application then goes to the Dean of the Graduate School, who will notify the candidate of the outcome. This process can often take several weeks.

The application package and all supporting documents must be received by the Department of Music by the following dates:

  • April 15 for summer admission
  • July 15 for fall admission
  • November 15 for spring admission

Graduate Assistantships

To apply for a graduate assistantship in choral music, instrumental music, jazz, piano accompanying, library, technology, music administration, or theory, students who have already applied for admission for the following academic year are advised to write a letter describing their qualifications and send it to the Director of Graduate Studies in Music by February 1. Letters of support may be enclosed.

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