Composition and Theory, M.A. | University of Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh, United States
24 months
42324 USD/year
42324 USD/year
24962 USD/year
Tuition fee
Apply date
Start date


Students in composition and theory combine private composition lessons with seminars in composition, analysis, orchestration, and related topics. We offer a master degree in Composition and Theory a the University of Pittsburgh. 


The IonSound Project, the music department's ensemble-in-residence, gives a concert of works by graduate student composers each spring. Residencies by other professional new music ensembles, in conjunction with the department's new music series Music on the Edge, provide additional opportunities for the reading and recording of student works. 

Career Prospects

We offer a master degree in Composition and Theory at the University of Pittsburgh. The University of Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra also frequently performs students' works. Each year the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra's Composer-of-the-Year chooses one local student work to be read by the Orchestra. Department of Music facilities include a well-equipped electroacoustic music studio, and professional quality live recordings are made during performances in Bellefield Hall Auditorium.

Because of the nature of the program, our student composers can also experiment with intercultural composition, incorporating non-Western instruments or musics. Most students also pursue interests in some facet of historical musicology or ethnomusicology, and some participate in our Western and non-Western performance organizations.

Programme Structure

Courses include:

  • MA Thesis
  • Music in Africa
  • Music in Latin America
  • Music in East Asia
  • Music in Southeast Asia
  • Music in South Asia

Key information


  • Full-time
    • 24 months

Start dates & application deadlines


60 SCH


On Campus

Academic requirements

GRE admission requirements GRE®

Other requirements

General requirements

  • Application form and $75 application fee.
  • Statement of purpose, an essay of about two pages that describes the applicant's academic background and professional goals.
  • Undergraduate and graduate transcripts from all higher education institutions attended. 
  • CV or Resumé.
  • Three letters of recommendation, preferably by persons who have taught the applicant in subjects related to the four research subdisciplines, rather than in performance lessons.
  • GREs are no longer required by the Department of Music .
  • Samples of work.

Tuition Fee

To alway see correct tuition fees
  • International

    42324 USD/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 42324 USD per year during 24 months.
  • National

    42324 USD/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 42324 USD per year during 24 months.
  • In-State

    24962 USD/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 24962 USD per year during 24 months.

Part-time: LOCAL: $1,003 per credit NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL: $1,728 per credit

Living costs for Pittsburgh

1148 - 1944 USD /month
Living costs

The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.


Interested in financing your studies? Find a student loan that works for you.

Financing partner MPOWER Financing Student Loans between $2,001 - $100,000


Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

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Composition and Theory
University of Pittsburgh
Composition and Theory
University of Pittsburgh


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