Music Performance/Percussion, M.M.
BOYER COLLEGE OF MUSIC AND DANCE
Admission Requirements and Deadlines
Fall: March 1
Spring: December 1
Applications are processed as they arrive up to the deadline date.
APPLY ONLINE to this graduate program.
Letters of Reference:
Number Required: 2
From Whom: Letters of recommendation should be obtained from evaluators who can provide insight into the applicant's abilities, talents, and aptitude for graduate study.
Coursework Required for Admission Consideration:
All applicants must present credentials that are the equivalent of the appropriate Bachelor of Music degree at Temple University, which is based on a curriculum of 124 to 135 hours.
Bachelor's Degree in Discipline/Related Discipline:
A degree in Music is expected.
Statement of Goals:
The Statement of Goals should include your special interests within the discipline and expectations for the program.
Standardized Test Scores:
Minimum TOEFL score needed to be accepted:
525 paper-based, 197 computer-based, or 71 internet-based.
See www.temple.edu/boyer for audition repertoire requirements.
A resume is required.
A student who wishes to transfer credit should speak with her/his
academic advisor and obtain a Request for Transfer of Graduate Credit form, available at: www.temple.edu/grad/forms.
Transfer credits must be approved by the advisor, the department chair,
and the Associate Dean. The maximum number of credits a student may
transfer is 6.
Due to the large number of applications for admission and the
competitive nature of its music programs, the College admits only a
portion of its applicants. In addition to the general admissions
credentials required of all Temple University graduate applicants,
specialized admission criteria (i.e., auditions, portfolios, interviews,
recommendations, departmental term papers, and standardized
examinations) are very heavily weighted in admission decisions of the
Boyer College of Music and Dance. Graduate applicants may be rejected
for admission for failing to obtain the required level of proficiency in
any one area of the specialized admission criteria regardless of the
level of success in meeting the Temple University general admission
criteria. In addition to the level of success demonstrated in the
above-mentioned criteria, a final admission factor is the College's
Optimum Enrollment Policy. This Policy may preclude the admission of any
student who meets the minimum requirements.
General Program Requirements:
Number of Didactic Credits Required Beyond the Baccalaureate: 30
Required Courses (20 s.h.):
MUSIC 8500: Instrumental Ensemble* (1)
MUSIC 8504: Instrumental Lessons (3)
MUSIC 8510: Instrumental Ensemble* (1)
MUSIC 8514: Instrumental Lessons (3)
MUSIC 8524: Instrumental Lessons (3)
MUSIC 8584: Instrumental Lessons/Recital (3)
MUSIC STUDIES 8701: Research in Music (3)
MUSIC STUDIES 8742-8749: Seminar in Theoretical/Stylistic Analysis (3)
* M.M. candidates must be available for ensemble assignments, which are determined by the department chair and may exceed curricular requirements.
Electives (10 s.h.) selected from Music, Music Education, Music Studies, or other graduate departments. At least 3 s.h. must be in academic, non-performance coursework. Advisor approval required.
Recommended electives include:
MUSIC 8551: History of Percussion
MUSIC 8552: Percussion Pedagogy
MUSIC 8554: Percussion Orchestra Repertoire
View all COURSE OFFERINGS in Music, Music Education, and Music Studies.
All degree credits are to be earned at Temple University.
Internship: No internship is required.
Language Examination: No language examination is required.
All entering Master of Music students are required to take Diagnostic
Examinations in Harmony, Counterpoint, Aural Skills, and Music History
prior to the first semester of graduate study. The purpose of these
examinations is to determine weaknesses in undergraduate preparation.
Depending on the examination results, students may be required to take
one or more remedial courses. In these instances, the remedial courses
will be graded on a "Credit / No Credit" basis and the official
university transcript will indicate "CR" (for "Credit," meaning that the
deficiency has been satisfied) or "NC" (for "No Credit," meaning that
the deficiency has not been satisfied). Students must have a "B-" or
better average in any remedial course or section thereof to earn the
grade of "Credit" and to satisfy the requirement. Students who earn a
grade of "NC" (that is, having a class average below "B-") must retake
that course or section until an average of "B-" or higher is achieved
and a grade of "CR" is recorded on the official university transcript.
Remedial courses are offered for undergraduate credit only, and may not
count toward graduate degree requirements.
1. All entering M.M. students must take the Diagnostic Examination in
Harmony, Counterpoint, and Aural Skills prior to the first semester of
graduate study unless conditions for exemption have been met (see
below). Students may take the test only once, and if they do not pass
the test or any portion thereof, they must enroll in the remedial
course(s) during their first semester of study. Depending on which
section(s) of the examination are failed, the examiners will stipulate
which sections of remedial coursework the student must take. The courses
are MUSIC STUDIES 5001: Diatonic Harmony Review, MUSIC STUDIES 5002:
Chromatic Harmony Review, MUSIC STUDIES 5003: Counterpoint Review, and
MUSIC STUDIES 5004: Graduate Aural Theory Review.
2. All entering M.M. students are required to take the Diagnostic
Examination in Music History prior to registering for their first
semester of graduate study unless conditions for exemption have been met
(see below). If the student is unsuccessful in passing any portion of
the Music History examination, the student may select one of two
Option A entails registering to take MUSIC STUDIES 5005: Music
History Review for 1 to 5 undergraduate credits, with 1 credit assigned
to each of the following five periods: Renaissance, Baroque, Classic,
Romantic, and Twentieth Century. Students may register for a maximum of 3
credits of MUSIC STUDIES 5005 in any semester; thus, it is possible to
extend the remediation over two semesters.
Option B entails the student's studying independently and retaking
the failed sections of the examination at the end of the first semester
of study. Students may retake the examination only once, and if any
section is failed a second time, they must take the assigned remedial
sections in their second semester of study.
3. Conditions for Exemption: The requirement to take the Diagnostic
Examination in any area is waived only for graduates of the Boyer
College of Music and Dance who (a) matriculate and enroll in the
semester immediately following completion of all undergraduate degree
requirements; and (b) received grades of "B-" or better in every
undergraduate course taken in each individual examination area to be
Professional Development Policy:
In addition to taking the required subjects for their degrees, all
students in the Boyer College of Music and Dance are obligated to serve
in a number of capacities in order to enrich their academic and musical
expertise. Boyer College of Music and Dance believes that such
experiences give impetus to successful professional careers. Among the
duties that may be required are conducting laboratory classes; tutoring;
teaching private lessons; coaching; participating in the distribution
and inventory control of Temple University-owned musical instruments and
instructional materials; participating in ensembles; accompanying;
performing at admissions and open house events; supervising performance
classes; and engaging in other academic activities.
1. Touring: All students in touring
performing ensembles are required to participate in all scheduled tours.
These tours, usually one or two weeks in length, often take place
immediately after termination of semesters. Students must arrange their
schedules to accommodate this requirement.
2. Participation: Master's degree candidates in wind, brass, and
percussion instruments must be available for ensemble assignments at the
discretion of the department chair, including participation beyond
3. Non-Credit Participation: With special permission, graduate
students for whom there is no ensemble requirement, or where previous
ensemble credits exceed the graduation requirement, may participate in
choral and instrumental ensembles without cost, with prior permission
from the ensemble director, the department chair, and the Associate
Independent Study Courses:
Independent study courses provide a special opportunity for graduate
students to work in a highly individualized setting with one or more
faculty members. All such study must receive the approval of the faculty
member providing the instruction, the students' major advisor, and the
Associate Dean. Approval will be granted only after the student has
presented a detailed description of the intended independent study
project. Approval of independent study projects will be granted only for
students whose academic and musical record provides substantial support
for the benefits of this type of study. In no case may more than 20% of
a graduate student's curriculum be taken as independent study. Private
lessons beyond those required in the curriculum are not an appropriate
form of independent study.
All students, including those for whom English is not the native
language, are expected to present all written work in acceptable
English. No double standard exists to differentiate students on the
basis of proficiency in the use of the English language. Students are
also responsible for becoming familiar with the College's statement on
plagiarism and academic honesty.
Graduate Private Lesson Policy:
Weekly one-hour private lessons are provided
for all matriculated master's and doctoral performance majors in good
standing, provided at least three additional credits of programmatically
required graduate-level study are taken simultaneously. A $250 per
semester lesson fee (subject to change without notice) is charged for
all private lessons. Tuition remission may not be used to cover the
private lesson fee.
Private applied lessons beyond the four-semester requirement currently
in effect for graduate performance students may be extended with the
permission of the jury, department chair, and the Associate Dean or Dean
of the Boyer College of Music and Dance.
Students withdrawing from the recital requirement during the recital
semester will receive an Incomplete and must register for extended study
for non-degree credit (MUSIC 5000: Recital Extension for 2 credits).
Recital Extension must be taken each semester until the recital has been
presented. This course will be offered on a "Credit/No Credit" basis
only. Upon satisfactory completion of the recital, the Incomplete for
the recital course will be replaced by a letter grade and MUSIC 5000:
Recital Extension will be issued a grade of "CR." Credit derived from
Recital Extension will not be counted toward degree requirements.
1. Recital Extension Fees: Tuition for these additional terms of
private study will be the cost of 2 graduate credits plus a $400 Recital
Extension fee. Graduate assistantships and other forms of
University-sponsored financial aid do not cover the Recital Extension
2. Exceptions to Recital Extension: (a) Students who perform their
recitals during the first three weeks of the Spring semester are not
required to register for Recital Extension that semester. (b) Students
who register for Recital Extension during the Summer may perform their
recitals during the first three weeks of the Fall semester. However, if
the student does not take Recital Extension during the Summer, s/he may
not present the recital in the Fall semester, regardless of the date,
without also registering for the Fall semester of Recital Extension.
3. Failure to Present Recital: The degree status of students who are
unable to present a recital after one semester of Recital Extension will
be reviewed by the Associate Dean and the major advisor, who, in
consultation with the major teacher and department, will determine
whether or not the student may continue in the program. Inability to
present the recital after one semester of Recital Extension may be
grounds for dismissal from the degree program for failing to maintain
reasonable academic progress.
All incomplete grades and keyboard proficiencies must be fulfilled by the first day of the month in which the student expects to graduate.
Comprehensive Final Project:
Students must maintain a list of all
literature, including solos, etudes, and excerpts, performed each
semester in lessons, using a printed form provided by the department.
During the final semester of study, students are required to submit a
three-part written project. Part 1 includes lists of music
studied/performed in all four semesters of lessons; the lists must be
signed by the studio teacher. Part 2 includes program notes or
background information for any two of the pieces listed in Part 1. The
notes should be approximately 500 words each and must contain at
least three recognized references, such as Baker’s and New Grove. Any
online resource must be documented and recognized as appropriate and
authoritative. Part 3 is to consist of one of the following:
A discussion of a third piece from the submitted lists or one
movement of a multi-movement piece from the lists: The length of the
piece or movement being discussed should be no less than 8-10
minutes. This discussion must form a paper of no less than 2,000
words. Topics may include (but are not limited to) historical
perspectives, performance and performance practice issues, instrumental
technical issues, the importance or role of the piece in the
literature for the student’s instrument, etc. This discussion must be
presented as a formal paper with supporting information, including
resources, charts, and the like.
(b) A theoretical analysis of one of the listed pieces or one
movement of a multi-movement piece from the lists: The length of the
piece or movement being analyzed should be no less than 8-10 minutes.
This analysis should address form, basic harmonic events, large-scale
phrasing, performance practice issues, etc., as outlined in a rubric
provided by the department.
The written project must be submitted to the Department of Instrumental Studies no later than November 1 for an anticipated December
graduation or April 1 for an anticipated May graduation. Documents are
distributed among the departmental faculty for review and a grade of
either “pass” or “fail.” A passing grade from a majority (and no fewer
than two) of the department’s graduate faculty members is required.
Students who do not pass are told what needs to be fixed (content,
grammar, etc.) and, using whatever resources they have (e.g., the
University's Writing Center), prepare and submit a revision that
receives a passing grade. In order for a student to graduate on
schedule, any revision that is required must receive a passing grade
before the deadline by which names must be submitted for graduation.
Performance majors present a public recital as the culminating event for
the master's degree (MUSIC 8984). Graduation recitals are typically one
hour in length; presented on-campus in either Rock Hall or Klein
Recital Hall; and adjudicated by three full-time music faculty members.
The student must show evidence through Temple University transcript
records of having taken private lessons up to the time of the graduation
recital. Students who wish to play a recital in the early Fall should
plan to register for and complete the final semester of lessons during
the preceding Summer months.
A Recital Permission Form indicating the private
teacher's approval for performance of the graduation recital must be
signed by the private teacher and submitted six weeks prior to the
recital. (If the recital is in the first five weeks of the Spring
semester, the form must be submitted two weeks before the end of the
Fall semester.) If required by the private teacher, a Recital Permission Jury must be scheduled at least four weeks
prior to the recital. If the form is not submitted or a required jury is
not scheduled, the department reserves the right to cancel or
postpone the recital.
Program Contact Information:
Dept. of Instrumental Studies
Boyer College of Music
2001 North 13th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19122
Professor Terell Stafford
Professor Terell Stafford
About the Program
The master's degree in Percussion Performance develops expertise beyond baccalaureate-level achievement. Students specialize in the study of the major instrument and take courses outside the major area that support advanced musical and academic development. The Department of Instrumental Studies provides the potential professional performer and/or teacher with the finest instrumental training within the context of a comprehensive university. Students study privately with professional artist-teachers and enjoy opportunities for performance in numerous large and chamber music ensembles.
Time Limit for Degree Completion: 6 years
Students are required to complete the degree program through classes offered before and after 4:30 p.m. Students are also able to complete the degree program on a part-time basis (8 credit hours or less per semester).
Dept. of Instrumental Studies
Boyer College of Music and Dance
2001 North 13th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19122
With approval of the major advisor, students may elect to take up to 6 graduate credits outside the field of music.
Boyer College of Music and Dance has been ranked among the
top 30 music schools in the country by U.S. News & World
This degree program is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM).
Areas of Specialization:
Study focuses on performance of the major instrument, the solo and ensemble literature of the instrument, and academic support areas in music.
The program prepares musicians for either professional activity or doctoral study.
Non-Degree Student Policy:
Non-matriculated students may enroll in selected courses in music with permission, but may not take applied lessons until they have been fully admitted and matriculated.
Boyer College of Music and Dance offers a number of assistantships and
academic internships to matriculated graduate students. Full awards
carry a cash stipend plus full tuition remission for the Fall and Spring
semesters. Partial awards also are available in values of 1/4 or 1/2 of
a full award. Duties for assistantships and internships vary, but
typically include teaching, tutoring, classroom assistance, research,
artistic performance, and/or direct service related to academic
programs. Applicants must submit an assistantship/internship application
by March 1 to obtain priority consideration for an award. Applications
are available online at the Graduate Financial Aid page of Boyer's website. Typically these awards are made only in the
Fall semester for up to two semesters: Fall and Spring. Awards may be
renewed on an annual basis (typically up to one additional year for
master's students and up to three years for doctoral students) based on
departmental needs as well as satisfactory academic and musical progress
by the recipient.