School of Music

Academic Brochure


The School of Music

The School of Music ranks among the finest in America, offering comprehensive programs at the bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral levels. The school nurtures and advances the art of music through creation, performance, scholarly inquiry, entrepreneurship, and enhancement of the artistic skills and experiences of the university and regional cultural communities.

The Master of Music program ranks 12th among public institutions offering graduate degrees in the most recent survey by U.S. News & World Report, the only national ranking of music programs. A distinguished faculty with more than 60 members offers opportunity to study with professionals in all major areas.

The school is a major contributor to the arts community through student, faculty, and professional performances in Swarthout Recital Hall, Bales Organ Recital Hall, the Robert Baustian Theatre, and the Lied Center of Kansas.


Admission Deadlines

  • Undergraduate: Feb. 1
  • Graduate: Priority for assistantships and fellowships, Dec. 15
    Final for assistantships, Feb. 15
    Final for Music Education and Music Therapy, May 15
    Final for all others, May 1

Undergraduate Admission

  • Undergraduate application
  • Application fee: $30 payable to the University of Kansas
  • Meet or exceed 1 of 3 academic requirements:
    1. ACT score of 21 or above (out-of state students: ACT 24) or SAT score of 980 or above (out-of-state students: SAT 1090) or
    2. Complete the Kansas Board of Regents’ Qualified Admission curriculum with at least a 2.5 grade-point average on a 4.0 scale or
    3. Rank in the top third of your high school graduating class
  • Transfer requirements include a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA from any university or college, including KU.
  • Successful audition on your primary instrument or voice

Graduate Admission

  • Graduate academic application
  • Application fee payable to the University of Kansas:
    –Domestic: $55
    –International: $65
  • 1 official copy of transcripts from each post-secondary university attended
  • Undergraduate/graduate grade-point average of 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale
  • 3 letters of reference
  • Résumé or curriculum vitae and repertoire list (not required for Music Education and Music Therapy)
  • International: Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) academic format scores
  • Successful audition
  • Graduate Record Examination scores required for M.M.E. in Music Education and Music Therapy, Ph.D. in Music Education and Music Therapy, Music Theory, Musicology
  • Download a PDF of additional materials required for each program.

Scholarships and financial aid

Scholarships are available to talented undergraduates in music. To receive a scholarship, you must apply and audition. Auditions are in the winter and spring for the next academic year. For more information, contact the Scholarship Chair.

For information about additional scholarships, visit the Scholarships website.

Graduate students may be eligible for fellowships and assistantships. The deadline for priority consideration for university fellowships and graduate teaching assistantships is Dec. 15. For information about fellowships, see Graduate Studies. For information about assistantships, contact the School of Music.

Student loans are available through Financial Aid and Scholarships.

Exceptional opportunities

Music at KU ranges from classical to cutting-edge electronic and contemporary music. KU students can experience the joy and intimate pleasure of solo performance and chamber music, as well as the exhilaration of great performances of the monumental masterworks for chorus and orchestra and winds.

  • A major jazz program including 3 big bands, 9 combos, jazz history, jazz improvisation, and one of the great jazz record collections in the world.
  • Ensemble opportunities in choirs, opera, wind ensemble and 2 concert bands, athletics bands, symphony orchestra, collegium musicum, chamber music, and jazz.
  • The chance to study with artists/teachers who are professional performers.
  • An academic music background (music theory, composition, musicology) that is unsurpassed.
  • Opportunities in music education with an accomplished music education faculty.
  • Opportunities in music therapy from the premier music therapy program in history. KU’s is the original program from which music therapy evolved.
  • KU piano students study with world-class artists/teachers and have opportunities to perform with the KU Symphony Orchestra and participate in KU’s nationally known master class program.

Excellent facilities

Murphy Hall is a great music teaching facility, with rehearsal facilities for every ensemble, more than 50 practice rooms, opera rehearsal and performance facilities, and a comprehensive music library.

Strong reputation

  • U.S. News and World Report: KU’s Master of Music program is tied for 12th among public institutions.
  • The music program at KU is a charter member of the National Association of Schools of Music.
  • KU is the only institution authorized by the Kansas Board of Regents to grant doctoral degrees in music.

Outstanding faculty and alumni

Music faculty members are active performers and researchers, with about 400 publications and presentations of research and creative activity each year all over the world. KU music alumni are members of major symphony orchestras, opera companies, and recording studios; faculty members at the nation’s finest colleges and universities; and leaders in the music profession.

For a list of faculty, performances, and events, visit the School of Music website.

The university

The University of Kansas is a major educational and research institution with 29,000 students and 2,400 faculty members. KU includes the main campus in Lawrence, the Medical Center in Kansas City, the KU Edwards Campus in Overland Park, campuses of the School of Medicine in Wichita and Salina, and educational and research facilities throughout the state.

The university has 58 nationally ranked programs and earns excellent ratings in the top college guides. For more than a decade, the Fiske Guide to Colleges has awarded KU four-star ratings in all categories ? academics, quality of living, and social life.

KU is a major comprehensive research and teaching university that serves as a center for learning, scholarship, and creative endeavor. KU is the only Kansas Board of Regents university to hold membership in the prestigious Association of American Universities, a select group of 62 public and private research universities that represents excellence in graduate and professional education and the highest achievements in research internationally.

The University of Kansas is a charter member of the National Association of Schools of Music and the only institution authorized by the Kansas Board of Regents to grant doctoral degrees in music.

More information



School of Music

Murphy Hall
1530 Naismith Drive, Room 460
Lawrence, KS 66045-3103
Fax: 785-864-5387
Rita Riley, Undergraduate Studies
Leslie Jabara, Recruitment Coordinator

School of Music

Murphy Hall
1530 Naismith Drive, Room 460
Lawrence, KS 66045-3103
Fax: 785-864-5387
Kay Coblentz, Graduate Studies
Lois Elmer, Graduate Studies, Music Education and Music Therapy

School of Music

Murphy Hall
1530 Naismith Drive, Room 446
Lawrence, KS 66045-3103
Fax: 785-864-5866
Robert Walzel, Dean
Martin Bergee, Associate Dean