Earn your DMA in Brass

The DMA degree in performance requires a minimum of 72 postbaccalaureate semester hours; of which 39 semester hours must be completed at the University of Iowa. 

For more information on the UI brass area, please contact Jonathan Allen.

Requirements and program planning

This information is intended to assist in your course planning but is not intended to serve as an official guide to graduation requirements. To confirm progress toward graduation, you should consult your advisor.

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Course offerings

  • Introduction to Graduate Study in Music (MUS:5300), 2 semester hours
  • Seminar in Music Research (MUS:7140), 2 semester hours

Review of Undergraduate Theory (MUS:5200): Required of all graduate students who do not pass the advisory examination in music theory. It must be taken before completing 9 semester hours from the following list of theory courses. This course does not count toward graduate degree requirements.

Students exempt from MUS:5200 through the advisory examination in music theory must complete 9 semester hours from the following:

  • Counterpoint Before 1600 (MUS:4200), 3 semester hours
  • Counterpoint After 1600 (MUS:4201), 3 semester hours
  • Jazz Theory (MUS:4730), 3 semester hours
  • Tonal Analysis (MUS:5235), 3 semester hours
  • Non-Tonal Analysis (MUS:5236), 3 semester hours
  • Analysis of Popular Music (MUS:5237), 3 semester hours
  • Special Topics in Theory and Analysis (MUS:5240), 3 semester hours
  • History of Ideas in Music (MUS:6210), 3 semester hours
  • Theoretical Approaches to Music (MUS:6211), 3 semester hours
  • Theory Pedagogy (MUS:6215), 3 semester hours
  • Advanced Tonal Theory and Analysis (MUS:6250), 3 semester hours
  • Advanced Non-Tonal Theory and Analysis (MUS:6251), 3 semester hours
  • Advanced Theory and Analysis of Popular Music (MUS:6252), 3 semester hours

Select from the music history courses in the following list. Only one 4000-level course (taken at the University of Iowa or equivalent transferred in from another institution) may count toward the 9 semester hours required:

  • Music and Gender (MUS:4320), 3 semester hours
  • Medieval and Renaissance Music (MUS:4325), 3 semester hours
  • Baroque Music (MUS:4330), 3 semester hours
  • 18th-Century Music (MUS:4335), 3 semester hours
  • 19th-Century Music (MUS:4340), 3 semester hours
  • 20th-Century Music (MUS:4345), 3 semester hours
  • Advanced Jazz History (MUS:4350), 3 semester hours
  • American Music (MUS:4355), 3 semester hours
  • Jazz Matters (MUS:4360), 3 semester hours
  • Studies in Film and Music (MUS:4610), 3 semester hours
  • Teaching Music, History, and Culture (MUS:6305), 3 semester hours
  • Topics in Musicology (MUS:6310), 3 semester hours
  • Historical Approaches to Music (MUS:6312), 3 semester hours
  • Topics in Ethnomusicology (MUS:6314), 3 semester hours
  • Foundations of Ethnomusicology (MUS:6315), 3 semester hours
  • Renaissance Music Notations (MUS:6326), 3 semester hours
  • Music Editing (MUS:6375), 3 semester hours

Major Ensemble (four semesters required), 1 semester hour each

  • Applied lessons in major area, 4 semesters at 2 semester hours each
    • Note: Normally, applied lessons are taken each semester until the recital requirement is completed; requests for exceptions must be approved by the brass area.
  • Wind Chamber Music (MUS:3485), 2 semesters at 1 semester hour each
    • Note: This course is recommended each semester that you are in residence.
  • Advanced Brass Pedagogy and Literature I (MUS:5111), 2 semester hours
  • Advanced Brass Pedagogy and Literature II (MUS:5112), 2 semester hours
  • Advanced Brass Ensemble Literature (MUS:5115), 2 semester hours
  • Qualifying Recital (MUS:7899), 0 semester hours
  • DMA Recital 1 (MUS:7900), 1 to 2 semester hours
  • DMA Recital 2 (MUS:7900), 1 to 2 semester hours
  • DMA Recital 3 (MUS:7900), 1 to 2 semester hours
  • DMA Essay/Thesis (MUS:7970), minimum of 2 semester hours; maximum of 6 semester hours
    • Note: If you started coursework prior to Fall of 2019, the range is 4 to 8 semester hours.

French or German proficiency

Students can satisfy the proficiency requirement in one of the following ways:

  • Completion of the fourth semester of the language at the undergraduate level with at least a grade of B, within the last 10 years.
  • Testing out of the fourth semester of the language at the University of Iowa. Placement exams in French and German are offered each semester by the UI Examination Service, 300 Jefferson Building.
  • Completion of graduate language courses French for Reading and Research (FREN:4911) or German Reading for Graduate Students (GRMN:5000). Prerequisites:
    • GRMN:1002 (013:012)
    • GRMN:1010 (013:014)
    • GRMN:1020 (013:013)
Note: Other languages must be approved by the brass area.
Secondary area of music

Minimum of 6 semester hours; this option of the DMA program is an opportunity for students to individualize their course of study according to their strengths, personal interests, and career aspirations. The secondary area will enhance their viability in the job market and broaden the student’s professional profile and competence.

The student, the major advisor, and a professor from the secondary area will define this individualized component of the DMA course of study by the end of the first year of study. A contract listing the required coursework or other specific outcomes will be filed with the student’s records in the Academic Office.

The required coursework will include a minimum of six semester hours. These hours may not include any courses required to fulfill other degree requirements. The student’s Comprehensive Examination committee will include a secondary area advisor, who will provide questions pertaining to the secondary area.

Possible secondary areas include conducting, music education, jazz studies, theory, music history, or a secondary applied area. Secondary areas may not be specialized areas of the primary performance/pedagogy or conducting area.

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Add a minor

Any student admitted to a graduate degree program in the School of Music may add a theory pedagogy minor by completing the required courses.

Brass faculty

Jonathan Allen

Jonathan Allen

Assistant Professor of Instruction
Brass Area Head
Katy Ambrose

Katy Ambrose

Assistant Professor
Michael Gause

Michael Gause

Assistant Professor
Portrait of John Manning

John Manning

Associate Professor
Associate Director, Instructional Support & Enrollment Management

Practice and perform

Need to book a music room, request an accompanist, check out audition information, rent a locker, or use a recording studio? Visit the Music Callboard for all scheduling and policy information.