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Master Final & Doctoral Comprehensive Examinations

Examinations are scheduled by the School of Music and are written on campus.  Students are notified by email when exam packets are available in the SOM Admin Office. Refer to SOM deadlines  All members of the examination committee must be on campus at the time of the examination in order to serve on the committee.

2020-2021 Exam Dates:

Fall 2020 - Due to the COVID pandemic exceptions have been made and neither faculty or students must be present on campus for exams. 

  • All final/comp exams will be take-home.
  • Faculty must send their comp exam questions in PDF format to students and Pauline via email by Friday, October 9.
  • The deadline for students to submit exam answers in PDF format to Pauline is Friday, November 6, 12:00pm CST.

Spring 2021 dates TBD; 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. or 12:45 p.m. to 4:45 p.m.

  • The requirements for all master's degrees include a final written examination. Such an examination will not duplicate course examinations. It will be evaluated by an examining committee consisting of at least three members of the graduate faculty, two of whom are from the major area. The examination is judged to be satisfactory or unsatisfactory, with two unsatisfactory votes making the committee report unsatisfactory. If the area so recommends, candidates who fail the examination may present themselves for re-examination, but not sooner than the next regularly scheduled examination period in the following session.  The examination may be repeated only once.
  • Candidates for doctoral degrees must pass a comprehensive examination, consisting of written or oral parts or both at the discretion of the major area. Admission to the comprehensive examination is granted upon the recommendation of the major area, the filing of the Plan of Study, and the approval of the Dean of the Graduate College. A student must be registered in the Graduate College at the time of the comprehensive examination, which must be passed not later than the session prior to the session of graduation. This examination is intended to be an inclusive evaluation of the candidate's master of the major and related fields of study, including the tools of research in which competence has been certified. For doctoral committees a minimum of five faculty members evaluate the exam.  The examination may be repeated only once. 

 The following are degree examination requirements within the School of Music:

  • M.A. — Final Examination (see specific area information)
  • Ph.D. Composition, Theory — Qualifying Examination
  • Ph.D., D.M.A. — Comprehensive Examination (see specific area information)
  • Ph.D., D.M.A. — Final Examination, Defense of Dissertation, Thesis Composition, D.M.A. Essay/Thesis

Exam Guidelines and Information:

  • Plan to arrive at exam site 5-10 minutes prior to start time.
  • Pens, lined paper and staff paper will be provided.
  • Beverages with lids and snacks are allowed.
  • You may use ear plugs/headphones.
  • By start time you will need to be logged on and have a blank Word document open; include your name and page number your document.
  • Four hours are allowed for the exams.  Breaks for any reason, spell checking, proofing, etc. are also included in these four hours.
  • Students are NOT allowed to use the Internet, notes, scores, etc., unless approved by the question writer and it is specifically stated on your original question.
  • You are required to print a copy of the exam answers to turn in to the proctor.  Make sure you have money on your account prior to exams.
  • All materials (including notes & original question) used at the exam will be collected by exam proctor at the end of each day.  Materials will be available for pick up in the Academic Office after exams are graded (~2-3 weeks after exam week).
  • Exam copies are allowed.  You may use a flash drive, but, device may not be inserted until exam is finished.  Or you may email or print a copy of your exam.
  • For exam results please contact your committee chair.  Results are not given out in the Academic Office.  The Grad College only notifies doctoral students who pass their exams.
  • Exams will be available for review in the Academic Office after the Report of Final Exam has been filed (~3-4 weeks after exam week). The original question/answer is kept on file in the Academic Office.