Doctor of Philosophy in Historical Musicology (PhD)

Admission to the PhD program is currently suspended and applications will be re-opened in fall 2021 to be considered for admission to the fall of 2022. Applicants will be considered for a USC Provost’s Fellowship, which provides five years of fellowship funding currently set at $30,500, with full tuition remission and health insurance. Additional fellowship and teaching assistantship opportunities are also available. Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact Bruce Brown, the Musicology Department chair, at well before the December 1st deadline for further information.

All applicants to the PhD in Historical Musicology must upload a writing sample via the Thornton SlideRoom portal, in the form of a research paper on a musical topic that contains accurate historical description, critical engagement with ideas and literature, and an original conclusion or insight (writing samples will not be accepted via mail or email).

Applicants should also be sure to upload a Statement of Purpose via the Thornton SlideRoom portal, one or two pages in length telling concisely why the applicant wishes to study musicology, why he or she is applying to USC, and what areas of research are of interest. Lastly, three Letters of Recommendation are required.

In addition to having official copies of college/university transcripts mailed to the USC Admission Office, applicants also must upload copies of transcripts online through the Thornton SlideRoom portal. Also all letters of recommendation should be submitted by recommenders via the SlideRoom portal.

For instructions on how to access the SlideRoom portal to submit your application materials click HERE

PhD applicants are required to submit a “Doctoral Introductory Video” as part of their SlideRoom Portfolio. For detailed instructions click here.

Please Note: All PhD applicants must take Thornton’s Graduate Academic Admission Examination.  This written examination reflects the types of critical inquiry with which doctoral-level courses at USC Thornton engage. The examination will be assessed by academic faculty in doctoral programs as a measure of an applicant’s readiness for the academic rigors and multi-disciplinary structure of the doctoral curriculum. This assessment will be one of several important components considered by the faculty in order to reach a final admission decision for each doctoral applicant. Details regarding Thornton’s Graduate Academic Admission Examination can be found here.