The Music History & Theory program emphasizes a wide range of methodologies and musical repertories, preparing students for careers as leading music scholars. Studies in music history may encompass cultural history, textual criticism, institutional history, hermeneutics, anthropology, race and gender studies, critical theory as well as film and media, and they often reflect a dynamic interplay between these disciplines. Students emphasizing music theory often concentrate on theoretical systems, detailed analysis of works, musical cognition, the history of theory, the history of compositional practices, and popular musics. The Chicago approach to the fields of history and theory is cross-disciplinary—students take a broad selection of courses, and their individual research programs typically reflect the flexible and porous approach that characterizes the Department and the University.
Music history and theory students with a special interest in composition may develop a program of study in consultation with faculty.
For detailed information about course requirements for the PhD program in Music History & Theory, please visit the Graduate Curriculum webpage.