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Program requirements:

There are two programs available to the student admitted to the MA. Students must declare which program they intend to follow at the beginning of their graduate studies. Any student wishing to change program must seek the approval of the graduate committee.

  1. Thesis-based MA: The thesis-based program consists of a minimum of eight graduate-level courses (*24) (including four proseminars: MUSIC 614, Pro-Seminar in Musicology; Music 650, Pro-Seminar in Music Theory; Music 670, Proseminar in Popular Music and Media Studies; and Music 665, Issues in Ethnomusicology; plus *12 in graduate-level options approved by the adviser or supervisor), and a thesis. Ideal thesis timeline: initial complete draft (shared with supervisor, who provides comments), second complete draft (shared with committee), scheduling defense (when committee agrees draft is ready) at least 4 weeks before defense date, providing third complete draft (bound in a loose-leaf notebook) to committee, defense, and revisions (post-defense). Allow at least 10 weeks between initial complete draft and defense, and at least two weeks post-defense for revisions, i.e. 3 months altogether. Thus to submit a thesis by the spring convocation deadline of April 15 you should have a complete first draft ready by January 15. (These numbers are for guidance only and are not policy statements. Each case will be slightly different...)
  2. Course-based MA: The course-based program consists of a minimum of nine graduate-level options courses (*27), (including MUSIC 614, 650, 670 and 665 as above, and *15 in graduate-level options), and in addition, a public oral presentation--the capping project-- of your research in the Department of Music (MUSIC 903, 906, or 909 Directed Research Project).

Options must be approved by the adviser or supervisor, and will typically include a mix of courses in the Department of Music, and outside, including geocultural area courses and theory courses. Unless similar courses have been taken before, all ethnomusicology students are required to take Music 666 (Fieldwork) and one world music ensemble (West African Music Ensemble, Middle Eastern and North African Music Ensemble, or Indian Music Ensemble); the ensemble course will also include a research paper. These courses count towards the program requirements listed above. Independent studies cannot be added without demonstrated need.

In addition to the above requirements, MUSIC 505 (Bibliography) may be required of entering students in both program routes if they have not demonstrated competency in bibliographic and research-methods skills in their previous studies. This course will not count towards the credit requirements as listed above.

All MA students are required to demonstrate a reading knowledge of French or German, or another language other than English, appropriate to the area of research (for instance, a language to be used in your field research) and approved by the student's supervisor. This requirement will normally be completed before the thesis or capping project is undertaken. Coursework undertaken to satisfy this requirement will not be credited toward the program. Click here for details of the language requirement.

NB: Please note that all graduate students must complete the Ethics training for Music graduate students, as well as the Professional Development requirement.

Most students complete their course work and thesis within two years. Fieldwork research is expected, however is often performed locally in Edmonton.

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