Graduate Dates & Resources

Graduate Student Handbook - part 1, more in progress (PDF)

Information on specific graduate programs can be found on each Areas of Study page. General University of Kentucky graduate student information can be found on the UK Graduate School website. If you are a prospective student looking for early exam dates and documents, they can be found at the bottom of this page.

DGS Forms & Academic Checklists

Download the form you need. Print a copy of the checklist to keep track of your academic record, enter all the courses or requirements as you complete each task, add the date. Make sure all incomplete grades are completed within one year. Bring a copy with you when consulting with your advisor. Bring a completed copy to the DGS when you are ready to apply for a degree.


Timelines & Dissertation Forms

Recital Forms

The recital forms should be signed by the advisor and committee members. Give the signed recital forms (one set for each recital) to the DGS for record.

DGS Email

DMA Common Exam Dates & Procedures

Those planning on taking one or both of the Common Exams should register with Dr. Lance Brunner, Director of Graduate Studies at least one week prior to the date of the exam.

Music History and Literature

Music History Common Exam
Offered online: Thursday, September 9, 2021, DMA 9am- 12pm;  PhD 9am - 1pm

Students may optionally take exams on a laptop computer with the following conditions: 

  1. The use of the Internet is forbidden, and
  2. the hard drive shall contain NO material related to the examination.The exams will be written and copied onto a “clean” external jump drive, which each student will provide. The exam may not be copied to or remain on the computer after the exam. The completed exams will be printed from the jump drive by the DGS and photocopies of the exam will be supplied to the two DMA Qualifying Examination committee members for grading.
  3. DMA Music History Exam Topics | Fall 2021 (PDF) - Updated July 2021
  4. PhD Music History Exam Topics | Fall 2021 (PDF) - Updated July 2021

This exam tests knowledge of music literature, historical periods, styles, composers, and pieces through aural and written test questions. For the aural test, a number of excerpts are played, and you are asked to provide information on each excerpt, such as its historical period, a possible composer, the type of piece, and an approximation of when the piece might have been written. The written exam asks for knowledge of pieces in music literature, composers, music terminology, and stylistic and historic periods and genres.

Suggested sources for review:

  • Grout and Palisca; A History of Western Music (W.W. Norton) 
  • Stolba; The Development of Western Music: A History (W.C. Brown) 
  • Pen; Introduction to Music (McGraw-Hill)

Music Theory

Music Theory Common Exam
Offered online: Friday, September 10, 2021 DMA & PhD 9am- 12pm

No computers are allowed for the theory portion of the common exam. A score packet and student answer packet, which provides pages for all needed responses, will be provided.  All that is needed for the theory exam are pencils. Please note that phones are not allowed in the examination room.

Doctoral Theory Common Exam Preparedness - UPDATED 2019
Content and Tips (PDF)
Terms to Know (PDF)

The graduate entrance exam in music theory is comprised of two parts: aural skills (50%) and written music theory skills (50%).

Aural Skills

This exam consists of approximately 25-30 questions presented in fill-in-the-blank and multiple-choice format, and contains listening examples on the following:

  • interval identification
  • scale identification
  • sonority identification
  • melodic identification
  • harmonic identification
  • contextual listening

Written Theory

This exam consists of two parts:

  • Theory and Fundamentals of Harmony (25-30 question)
    • voice-leading
    • intervals and chords
    • scales and collections
    • rhythm and meter
    • non-harmonic tones
  • Form and Analysis (15-20 questions)
    • key areas 
    • cadences 
    • harmonic analysis 
    • atonal analysis / set theory
    • form and score analysis