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Advancement to Doctoral Candidacy

Requirements prior to taking the qualifying examination:

  • Successful completion of the Core Curriculum and all curricular requirements of the student’s area of emphasis for the Ph.D. or D.M.A. degree, including at least 6 credits of Music 298. Students should enroll in 298 with the committee members who will be providing qualifying questions for the exam.
  • Appointment of the Doctoral Committee per UC San Diego regulations.
  • All Ph.D. students must submit one research paper (not previously submitted for any other degree) that is judged by the student’s committee to be of publishable quality. The topic and scope of the publishable paper will be developed with, and approved by, the student's Ph.D. committee chair.
  • Composition students must submit a folio of not fewer than three compositions (not previously accepted for an M.A. degree).
  • D.M.A. students must give at least one recital (not previously given for an M.A. degree)
  • Integrative Studies students must complete the Preliminary Examination (more info here).

The qualifying examination for all doctoral students will consist of the following:

A written and oral defense of three questions provided by the doctoral committee pertaining to appropriate areas of specialization. Qualifying exams must be well supported with appropriate and proper citations, and are most often in the range of 25 pages of written text for each question. Students have a 12-day period in which to write the qualifying exam and must deliver copies of their responses to each committee member and to the graduate staff advisor within that 12-day period. Final deliveries must be made on a regular UC San Diego work day, followed by a normative period of at least five work days before the exam defense can be held, so please schedule accordingly. Students are advised to schedule an agreeable date and time for the exam with their committee members and then work backwards to arrive at an acceptable date for receiving their questions. For Integrative Studies students, one question will involve a defense of the student’s dissertation prospectus. This prospectus is a document that presents the research topic of the dissertation, places it in the context of relevant literature and/or in the context of recent artistic developments, discusses its significance, specifies and justifies the research methods, theoretical orientation and/or artistic approach, and indicates the anticipated steps leading to completion.

Successful completion of the qualifying exam marks the student’s advancement to doctoral candidacy.