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School of Music

Graduate Studies

Why choose Butler for your Master's degree?

We offer MORE. With a variety of degree options, including the opportunity for a dual Master's degree, and competitive tuition rates, you are sure to find a home at the Butler University School of Music. Our graduate students perform in some of the best concert halls in the city located right on campus, study with world-renowned faculty, gain professional teaching experience through the Butler Community Arts School, and enjoy the endless musical and cultural activities Indianapolis has to offer.

Graduates of our program go on to prestigious employers and doctoral programs across the country with recent placements in the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University- Bloomington, the Los Angeles Opera, Princeton University, Evansville Philharmonic Orchestra, Rice University, Eastman School of Music, and more.

Degree Programs

Select your degree program of choice for more information.

Master of Music (MM)

Composition
Conducting- Instrumental and Choral
Music Education (thesis and non-thesis options)
Performance
Piano Pedagogy

Master of Arts (MA)

Musicology

Music Teacher Certification (non-degree seeking)

Graduate Assistantships and Financial Aid

We offer a limited number of graduate assistantships, fellowships, and tuition waivers to graduate music students in the fall of every academic year. Graduate awards are reviewed and renewed annually. NOTE: New students applying for entry in the spring semester will not be eligible for a graduate assistantship, fellowship, or tuition waiver, but may apply for the following academic year.

Graduate Assistantships and Fellowships

A graduate assistantship covers the cost of tuition for 15 credit hours per academic year plus an additional stipend paid over nine months. Any fees outside of tuition, such as Applied Music Instruction fees and housing, are not covered by the assistantship. Assistantships are renewable annually. All graduate assistants work with a faculty or staff supervisor to determine specific duties and schedule.

Assistantships include*:

*Note: not all assistantships/fellowships are available every academic year, email music@butler.edu with specific questions.

Tuition Waivers

Tuition waivers cover part or all of tuition for one academic year. Any fees outside of tuition, such as Applied Music Instruction fees and housing, are not covered by a tuition waiver. Anticipated tuition waivers for the 2019–2020 year:

Applying for an Assistantship/Tuition Waiver

Prospective Students may apply for a graduate assistantship or tuition waiver on the the JCA Graduate Music Supplement portion of the Butler Graduate Application OR by completing the following Graduate Assistantship/Tuition Waiver Application. Application deadline is January 1.

Current/Returning Students may apply to renew their current award/position OR apply for a new award/position by completing the Graduate Assistantship/Tuition Waiver Application. Application deadline is January 1.

NOTE: Some assistantships/fellowships may require an interview. Students will be contacted via email by the School of Music office to schedule any required interviews. If you have questions or concerns, please contact music@butler.edu OR 317-940-9065.

Additional Financial Aid

The Office of Financial Aid awards Federal Direct Loans to degree-seeking graduate students enrolled at least half-time (three credit hours). There is no gift assistance for graduate students awarded through the Office of Financial Aid. Federal Direct PLUS Loans for Graduate Students and Private Loans are available to those needing additional assistance.

Graduate students who are studying abroad for credit with their program may be eligible to use loans for associated costs. Learn more about Graduate Financial Aid here.

Cost of Attendance

For the most up-to-date graduate tuition and fees, please visit butler.edu/tuition (NOTE: be sure to scroll down to the "Graduate Tuition" header and find the Jordan College of the Arts line in the fee chart). In addition to tuition, graduate music students are also responsible for an Individual Music Instruction fee listed under the "Miscellaneous Fees" header; most of the other fees in this section are only applicable to undergraduate students. Questions? Contact the Office of Financial Aid at finaid@butler.edu or toll free (877) 940-8200.

Application and Admission

Application Process

  1. Complete the Application for Graduate Admission, including the JCA Music Graduate Supplement.
  2. Submit three letters of recommendation. Recommenders should comment on the applicant's musical and academic abilities. Letters may be submitted via the Application for Graduate Admission (preferred) or emailed to music@butler.edu.
  3. Submit any required Pre-screening materials, see requirements below.
  4. Schedule an interview and/or audition. You may request an audition date on the Application for Graduate Admission/JCA Music Grad Supplement. Applicants invited to audition/interview will be contacted via email for scheduling by the School of Music office. If you have completed the above steps and have not yet heard from the School of Music office, please email music@butler.edu or call 317-940-9065. Audition requirements are listed below.
Application Deadline for Fall Admission: January 1*

*If you are interested in applying for the spring term, please contact the School of Music office at music@butler.edu or 317-940-9065.

Pre-Screening and Audition Requirements By Degree:

Degree Program Pre-Screening Audition/Interview**
Composition Three original scores and recordings of representative compositions. Submit scores as PDF files and recordings as links to online sources (i.e. YouTube, DropBox, SoundCloud, etc.) to music@butler.edu with subject line "[FULL NAME]-Comp Pre-Screen". Applicants who pass the pre-screening will be invited to interview with the Composition faculty. On-campus interviews are preferred. Please bring paper copies of at least three scores to the interview.
Choral Conducting Video in front view of applicant conducting a rehearsal or performance. Submit video recording as a link to an online source (i.e. YouTube, DropBox, GoogleDrive, etc.) to music@butler.edu with subject line "[FULL NAME]-Choral Conducting Pre-Screen". Applicants who pass the pre-screening will be invited to interview and audition with the choral faculty. The audition will consist of conducting part of a Butler choral ensemble rehearsal, a solo performance on either voice or piano, and an aural skills exam. 
Instrumental Conducting Video in front view of applicant conducting a recent performance AND a rehearsal including at least two selections of contrasting style and/or period. Ideally, rehearsal and performance will contain the same repertoire. Submit video recording as a link to an online source (i.e. YouTube, DropBox, GoogleDrive, etc.) to music@butler.edu with subject line "[FULL NAME]-Choral Conducting Pre-Screen". Applicants who pass the pre-screening will be invited to interview and audition with appropriate instrumental conducting faculty. The audition will consist of a conducting audition, a short demonstration on the candidate's primary instrument, and a written exam of musical skills and knowledge
Music Education No pre-screen required. Applicants will work with the School of Music office to schedule an interview with one or more members of the music education faculty. A performance audition is not required.
Musicology

Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test AND 

A scholarly paper representing undergraduate music history work. Submit paper to music@butler.edu with subject line "[FULL NAME]- Musicology Pre-Screen".

Applicants will work with the School of Music office to schedule an interview with one or more members of the musicology faculty. A performance audition is not required.
Performance 

Voice only: Video recording of recent performance (i.e. senior recital) OR of 1-2 pieces of solo repertoire. Submit video recording as a link to an online source (i.e. YouTube, DropBox, GoogleDrive, etc.) to music@butler.edu with subject line "[FULL NAME]-Voice Perf Pre-Screen".

No pre-screen required for instrumental areas.

See audition requirements by instrument area: Brass, Piano, Percussion, Strings, Woodwinds, Voice (NOTE: Voice applicants must first pass a pre-screen)

Piano Pedagogy Video demonstrating applicant's teaching abilities. Video should include the applicant teaching two different students (total of 20 minutes in length). Submit video recording as a link to an online source (i.e. YouTube, DropBox, GoogleDrive, etc.) to music@butler.edu with subject line "[FULL NAME]-Piano Ped Pre-Screen". For each child in the video, please indicate the child's age, years of piano study, and years study with you. Applicants who pass the pre-screening will be invited to interview with the piano pedagogy faculty as well as complete a piano audition. For the audition portion, candidates should prepare three important, contrasting works from different styles and periods (Baroque, Classical, Romantic, Contemporary). All pieces should be memorized. Sight-reading will also be required.

**IMPORTANT: You may request an audition and/or interview date on the Butler Application for Graduate Admission; HOWEVER, all auditions and interviews must be officially confirmed with the School of Music office. Please do not finalize travel plans until you have confirmed audition/interview details with the School of Music office (music@butler.edu or 317-940-9065).

Questions?

General Admission

Contact the Office of Graduate Admission

Audition, Assistantships, and Curriculum

Contact the School of Music office

-OR-

Associate Director of Graduate Studies in Music, Dr. Nicholas Johnson