Last updated December 7, 2019
As part of the series on How to Fully Fund Your Ph.D., here is a list of Ph.D. programs in music that offer full funding to their students. A Ph.D. in Music and related disciplines opens the door to a variety of interesting careers. You could work as a performance artist, university professor, or composer, among many options.
“Full funding” is a financial aid package for students that includes full tuition remission and an annual stipend or salary for the duration of the student’s doctoral studies. Full funding is not universal, so it’s essential that you research the financial aid offerings of all the potential Ph.D. programs in your academic field, including small and lesser-known schools.
You can also find several external fellowships in the ProFellow database for graduate and doctoral study, including opportunities for funding for dissertation research, fieldwork, language study and summer work experiences.
Brandeis University, Ph.D. in Musicology or Musical Composition and Theory (Waltham, MA): Funding includes a competitive fellowship, a full-tuition scholarship, and health insurance benefits. All doctoral candidates teach some semesters as part of their academic program.
Brown University, Ph.D. in Music (Providence, RI): All Ph.D. students receive full funding for 5 years, including costs for tuition and health insurance, plus stipends for fellowships and teaching assistantships.
City University of New York, DMA or Ph.D. in Music (New York, NY): All students admitted into the Graduate Center music programs will receive tuition remission. Most Ph.D. and several D.M.A. students will receive a 5-year Graduate Center Fellowship.
Cornell University, Ph.D. in Musicology (Ithaca, NY): Every student accepted into the Ph.D. program at Cornell receives five years of guaranteed funding, including financial support for four summers. Every student is given a fellowship for the first year; a second year of fellowship year may be taken in the fourth or fifth year, or may be deferred if outside funding is procured by the student. The remaining three years of funding are in the form of teaching assistantships. Student Health Insurance is provided under fellowship and teaching assistantships.
Duke University, Ph.D. in Composition, Ethnomusicology, or Musicology (Durham, NC): All admitted students to the graduate program in the Duke Department of Music receive a Fellowship, which includes full tuition and an income stipend for the five years of the program.
Georgia Institute of Technology, Ph.D. in Music Technology (Atlanta, GA): Our Ph.D. in Music Technology is a fully funded program, including a monthly stipend and tuition waiver. In this program, our students focus on novel research with a broad impact on music, collaborating with faculty on a variety of topics.
Harvard University, Ph.D. in Music (Boston, MA): Graduate students are awarded six years guaranteed funding (including living expenses) when accepted to a Ph.D. program.
Princeton University, Ph.D. in Musicology and Ph.D. in Composition (Princeton, NJ): All Music Department graduate students receive tuition scholarship and a 12-month stipend for the full five years of the program. Additional resources include a research budget (Bryan Fund), funding for summer language study, and subsidized private voice or instrumental studio instruction. After the five-year program, students are eligible to be nominated by the graduate school for sixth-year funding and may supplement their income with teaching as available.
Stanford University, DMA in Composition, Ph.D. in Computer Based Music Theory and Acoustics (CBMTA), or Ph.D. in Musicology (Stanford, CA): In the first year, all students receive full tuition and a fellowship stipend. During years 2-5, students receive tuition and a salaried assistantship. Two summers are also provided for and include tuition and a salary as a research assistant.
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