Program type:


On Campus
Est. time to complete:

2-3 years
Credit Hours:

Take the next step in advancing your career in composition at one of the nation's most comprehensive music schools recognized internationally for its artistic and academic excellence.
The graduate Composition degree at the University of North Texas is one of the largest and most diverse in the nation — with 70 composition students and six faculty composers representing a wide range of compositional aesthetics approaches. One of the distinctive features of the UNT Composition program is the way that state-of-the-art music technology is integrated with acoustic composition within the curriculum, which provides both artistic flexibility and academic rigor, allowing you to refine your craft, develop your own personal voice and prepare for a career as a professional composer.

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Why earn a degree in Music Composition?

Our faculty members have been recognized for their acoustic, electroacoustic and intermedia work through grants, fellowships, commissions and performances throughout the world. Educational and artistic experiences are enriched through regular guest residencies, including composers and other new music specialists, as well as dozens of other events during the academic year.

The college is a vital component to the region's arts community, presenting more than 1,000 formal and informal concerts annually. Its facilities include more than 300 practice rooms, seven performance halls, numerous classrooms and rehearsal rooms, and computer labs.

Marketable Skills
  • Instruction of musical skills
  • Music copying and transcribing
  • Public event management assistance
  • Book/journal editing
  • Advanced data collection and analysis

Music Composition Master's Highlights

There are regular opportunities for students to have new works read by large ensembles, including the UNT Symphony Orchestra and Nova Ensemble.
The Composers Forum student organization brings new student works to the public's attention, coordinating performances of UNT composers' works on and off campus.
The division has access to a national network of professional composers through the Society of Composers, Inc. and an institutional membership to the American Composers Forum.
The Center for Experimental Music and Intermedia provides a unique environment to explore time-based arts and is internationally renowned for its long history of innovation, particularly in electroacoustic music.
Faculty and students across the arts, engineering and science disciplines explore new media applications based on shared expertise and evolving technologies in the Initiative for Advanced Research in Technology and the Arts (iARTA).
There are many performance opportunities available at UNT for composition students, including the Spectrum concert series that features new instrumental works, vocal works and works utilizing new technologies by faculty and student composers.

What Can You Do With A Degree in Music Composition?

Alumni of the program have achieved national and international success. They enjoy careers as university professors, commercial and media composers, arrangers and arts administrators.

Music Composition Master's Courses You Could Take

World Music Analysis (3 hrs)
Topics include analytical approaches to world music; theoretical and practical issues in transcription; and development of new paradigms for transcription, analysis and graphic representation of music.
Music Cultures of the World (3 hrs)
This course is a selected survey of music cultures of the world and includes examination of musical traditions from a perspective that emphasizes music as an integral part of society and culture.
Orchestration (3 hrs)
This course is a historical survey of orchestrational practices, with emphasis on contemporary approaches and creation of original works or transcriptions for orchestra. Score study and rehearsal attendance required.
Topics in Computer Music (3 hrs)
Topics include advanced studies in computer music and related media focusing on compositional techniques, interactive systems, software tools, hardware design, performance practices and analytical approaches.
Topics in Contemporary Music (3 hrs)
This course is advanced research in contemporary music focusing on repertoire, contemporary practices and analytical approaches.
Analytical Techniques for Popular Music (3 hrs)
This course is an analysis of materials and techniques in popular music and related musical genres.

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