For New Students


Congratulations on your admission to the College of Music. We are pleased that you have decided to pursue graduate studies at the University of North Texas. As an incoming graduate student, you will attend the New Student Orientation on the Monday and Tuesday before classes begin. To view a detailed orientation schedule, see the page listed in the menu above. During New Student Orientation you will become more familiar with the College of Music, meet various faculty and staff who will be involved in your education, and take a variety of exams that will ensure that you are prepared for your particular course of study (see below). Failure to attend New Student Orientation and/or take the required exams will result in a registration block on your account during subsequent semesters.

How to Communicate with Us

Upon your arrival at UNT, you must use your EagleConnect account for all UNT-related correspondence. Over the course of the summer, the Graduate Studies Office will send you periodic announcements to your EagleConnect account. We thus encourage you to start using this account as soon as possible.

Exams Taken During Orientation

Graduate Placement Exam (GPE)

Most incoming students are required to take the Graduate Placement Exams (GPE) in Music History and Music Theory; however, some are exempt from one or more of these exams based on their academic record. The Graduate Studies Office will send you an email specifying which exams you are required to take.

Graduate Writing Exam (GWE) 

Incoming students must demonstrate the ability to write in English. Students who fail to do so by the end of their first semester of study will not be permitted to register for graduate-level courses in future semesters until they have fulfilled this requirement. The College of Music cannot waive this requirement. Failure to fulfill it will affect financial aid, scholarships, and TA/TF positions. Taking the Graduate Preparation Course provided by the Intensive English Language Institute (IELI) does not satisfy this requirement. Students may demonstrate writing proficiency in various ways depending on their degree program.

MA (Composition, Ethnomusicology, Music Theory, Musicology) and PhD (Composition, Ethnomusicology, Music Theory, Musicology)
Incoming students must submit scores for the verbal and writing portions of the GRE (Graduate Record Examination) as a condition of their admission to UNT. Graduate applicants in Composition may request to take the Graduate Writing Examination, administered on campus by the UNT College of Music between February 1 and March 1 each year.
MM and DMA (Jazz Studies, Performance and Conducting)
Incoming students may either 1) pass an on-campus Graduate Writing Exam (GWE) administered during orientation or 2) submit an accceptable score on the Analytical Writing portion of the GRE. This score must be officially filed with the Toulouse Graduate School prior to enrollment.
MMEd and PhD (Music Education)
Incoming master's students answer a writing prompt as part of the application process. Incoming doctoral students write a short essay in response to a prompt provided by the Division of Music Education during their on-campus interview in the spring. Typical prompts may include (but are not limited to) topics related to advocacy, competition, creativity, repertoire selection, and classroom management.

Area Specific Exams

Incoming students in Composition, Jazz, Piano, and Voice will take one of the following area-specific exams.

Graduate Jazz History Placement Exam

All incoming MM students in Jazz Studies are required to take the Jazz History Placement Exam. 

Graduate Vocal Literature, Lyric Diction, and Pedagogy Exams

All graduate voice majors are required to take vocal literature and lyric diction placement examinations. These diagnostic examinations assess the student’s knowledge of repertoire for the voice and rules of pronunciation in Italian, French and German. The results of this examination will be used to advise students in curricular matters and to determine placement in diction and literature courses. 

Additionally, DMA voice majors must demonstrate proficiency in voice pedagogy by passing the pedagogy entrance exam administered during new student orientation, or by taking MUAG 5300 (Science and Pedagogy of the Singing Voice).  See the Voice Handbook for further details.

Planning Your First Semester - How to Register for Lessons

During orientation week, you will plan your course schedule for your first semester and begin working on your degree plan in consultation with your major professor (if you have already been assigned one), the Senior Graduate Academic Counselor, Dr. Colleen Conlon or Graduate Academic Counselor, Dr. Brian Cheesman. We urge you to meet with one or both of these individuals before finalizing your course schedule for your first semester. Before meeting with them, however, please familiarize yourself with the academic requirements associated with your degree plan in the Graduate Catalog. Graduate level courses begin with 5xxx or 6xxx. Remember to register with the 4- or 5-digit class number, not the course prefix and catalog number.

If you already know your applied instructor, you may be able to register for lessons before orientation. Master's and doctoral students may register for either three or four credit hours of lessons each semester. Contact the appropriate administrative assistant listed for the 4- or 5-digit lesson class number (“code”) you will need to register: Laura Russell (Composition), Diana Cooley (Vocal Studies, Keyboard Studies, Conducting & Ensembles), Carole Overturf (Instrumental Studies and Early Music Instruments). For Jazz Studies, consult the box labeled "Current" on the Jazz Studies Website. If you are an international student, you will need to remove all UNT-International holds before you can register for any classes, including lessons.