Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) MEMT Graduate Handbook

This handbook is your guide throughout your Doctor of Philosophy program in Music Education and Music Therapy (MEMT).  Use this document with the School of Music online catalog, and the School of Music Academic Services Resources.

Student Responsibilities

You are expected to know the requirements of your program as found in this handbook and the online Academic Catalog for the year you begin your studies. You are responsible for knowing the policies and procedures that govern your advancement through the program. Not knowing about a requirement does not excuse you from meeting that requirement.

COVID-19 Information

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought new challenges for graduate students, faculty, and programs. While this handbook lays out the standard policies that govern your doctoral program, you can expect that some of these policies will be adapted to meet the realities of pursuing a graduate degree during a pandemic. You are also responsible for knowing the adapted policies and procedures. As policies change, you will be notified by email. In addition, adapted policies will be posted to the following pages, though you are encouraged to reach out to the Graduate Student Services Coordinator if you are ever in doubt:

Official Communication

Your KU email address is the official means of communication for all KU students. Check your “spam” or “junk” folder regularly to ensure you are receiving all important communications. For more email information see KU Information Technology: Email.

Table of Contents


See KU Registrar: Enrollment for online course enrollment information. Check your Enroll and Pay Student Information Center for exact dates and times. They are posted in March for Summer and Fall continuing student enrollment and in October for Spring continuing student enrollment. Also use this link if you are a new student enrolling for the first time.

Courses at the 500 level or above are graduate level courses and will count toward your graduate GPA but may not count towards your degree. At least 50% of your credit hours must be earned in courses at the 700 level or above.

Your advisorNew MEMT students will be assigned an advisor upon admission, but this advisor may change. Your major professor is the primary advisor for your degree program. The advising schedule, academic calendar, enrollment deadlines, fees, and additional information to assist you and your advisor can be found at Office of the Registrar and resources for academic services
Full-time statusFull-time enrollment for Fall and Spring semesters is:
  • Enrollment in 9 credit hours,
  • Enrollment in 6 credit hours plus a GTA regardless of percentage of appointment.

Full-time enrollment for Summer semester is:

  • Enrollment in 6 credits hours,
  • Enrollment in 3 credit hours plus a GTA regardless of percentage of appointment.

Full-time status might be required by the rules and regulations governing student loan deferments, scholarships and fellowships, and foreign student visas (F-1 and J-1).

Maximum/Minimum number of creditsYou may enroll in a maximum of 16 credits in the fall and spring semesters and 8 credits during the summer session. If you must enroll in more than the maximum number of credits, a Schedule Change Form is required. If you are NOT required to have full-time status there is no required minimum number of credits. Doctoral Candidates should take note of the post-comprehensive enrollment requirements found in the Graduate Studies Policy Library. 
Late enrollment

To avoid late enrollment fees, you must enroll BEFORE the first day of classes. Enrollment information, including the enrollment schedule, is found on the KU Registrar. Late enrollment begins at 12:00 a.m. on the first instructional day of the Fall, Spring and Summer semesters.

If you enroll AFTER the first week of classes, you must obtain a Petition to Late Enroll form from the Graduate Student Services office, 446 Murphy, complete it with appropriate signatures, and submit it to the Registrar’s office. Enrollment after the 20th day of classes is only permitted in rare cases, by completing a FacEx Appeal.

International student enrollmentInternational students must be particularly aware of the rules and regulations regarding their visa status. International students should contact the International Support Services (ISS) office when enrolling, dropping or adding classes, reducing full-time enrollment, changing their degree program, taking a leave of absence, or withdrawing from the university. U.S. (Federal) laws govern your student visa status, and you must be fully aware of them as you proceed through your degree program.
Leave of absenceYou may request a leave of absence in cases of illness, emergency, to pursue family responsibilities, or to pursue activities related to long-range professional goals. The time taken for a leave of absence does not count against your degree program time constraints (see Graduate Studies Policy). Taking a leave of absence is highly encouraged over not enrolling and being discontinued by the University. Students are allowed a maximum of three 1-year Leaves of Absence.
Updated Fall 2021

A leave of absence is granted for no more than 1 year at a time. To begin a leave of absence, you must submit the Leave of Absence (LOA) Request form to the Graduate Student Services Coordinator in 446 Murphy requesting a leave of absence, stating the reason for the leave, and for which semester(s). Your advisor must approve your request. The first request for a leave of absence is automatically granted. Subsequent requests must be submitted to the Committee on Graduate Studies in Music (COGSIM) for approval. Progress toward completing your degree will be considered in granting further Leaves of Absence.

International students must work with an ISS counselor if they are planning to request a leave of absence. Depending on your situation, there may be additional documents you must submit.

Retroactive withdrawal from coursesThe School of Music does not allow, under any circumstances, retroactive withdrawal by graduate students, either for a whole semester or for individual courses.
Degree checklist / Program of study

Degree Progress Check Sheets/Programs of Study are available online for the PhD program in Music Education & Music Therapy. The check sheet has the minimum required coursework and credits for your degree. Using this sheet with Doctoral Program Planning Committee (DPPC details listed below) allows you to plan your entire program from beginning (Diagnostic Exams) to end (Doctoral Final Oral Exam). You may request an updated copy of the degree check sheet kept in your folder from the Graduate Student Services office, in 446 Murphy. Student check sheets are updated in your file annually using the advising report found in the myKU portal.

Re-admission for returning graduate students

A student who has been actively enrolled in a degree-seeking graduate program but has not been enrolled for one academic year (three consecutive semesters, including summer) or less, may be eligible to use the Permit to Re-enroll form.

A student who has been actively enrolled in a degree-seeking program and has not enrolled for four or more consecutive semesters (including summer) without an approved Leave of Absence is not eligible to use the Permit to Re-enroll form and must re-apply for Graduate admission, including a possible audition. In this case, you would be admitted as a new student and additional requirements may be in effect.

If you were not enrolled during the Spring or Fall semester preceding your return, you must contact the Graduate Student Services Coordinator to determine the correct procedure for returning to your degree program.

Enrollment during your final semester

University policy states that you must be enrolled in at least 1 credit during the semester you are graduating or the semester prior if meeting the early deadline. This includes the summer term.

Enrollment grace periodThere is an enrollment “grace period.” If you meet all degree requirements, which includes passing your Final Exam and submitting written documents, by the end of the first two weeks of the Fall or Spring semester (or the end of the first week of the Summer semester), you do not have to enroll, but will graduate that semester. You must have been enrolled in at least one credit the previous semester.


Graduate Studies uses the “ABCDF” system of grading. The School of Music also uses a “+/-” system. For coursework in thesis, dissertation, lecture-recital with document, or document alone, the letter grade “P” (Progress) is used instead of “I” (Incomplete) to indicate acceptable progress until the document has been completed and a final grade of A-F is submitted. “P” grades are not included in the computation of your grade point average, and they cannot be changed to a letter grade after the semester they are taken.

A grade of B- or below in a course in your major area is not acceptable and will not meet degree requirements. For all other courses, a grade of C- or below is not considered a passing grade and will not carry graduate credit or fulfill a degree requirement but will be counted towards your graduate GPA unless students elect to enroll Credit/No Credit for the course.

Incomplete grade policy

The grades “W” and “I” may be given. The letter “I” indicates incomplete work that may be completed without re-enrollment in the course (generally within one year). The letter “W” indicates withdrawal for which no credit or grade point is assigned. “WG” is used when no grade has been given by the class instructor and means “waiting for grade.”

A student who has an “I” posted for a course must make up the work by the date determined by the instructor, in consultation with the student, which may not exceed 1 calendar year, or the last day of the term of graduation, whichever comes first. An “I” not removed within a year is automatically converted to a grade of “F” or to the lapse grade assigned by the course instructor. The grade of F or the lapse grade will be included in the transcripts and GPA.

Extensions to the time limit may be granted by the dean’s representative upon submission of a petition from the student containing the endorsement of the course instructor who assigned the “I” grade, or the area coordinator if the instructor is unavailable. After the “I” grade is converted to a grade of “F,” the grade may only be changed in accordance with USRR Article II, Section 3.

It is your responsibility to make certain that all Incompletes have been replaced with a letter grade by your final semester. You may not take your oral comprehensive exam with Incompletes on your academic record.

Credit/No creditYou may elect to be graded with Credit (CR) or No Credit (NC) instead of ABCDF under certain circumstances. For graduate students, the grade of CR will be recorded for a grade of C or above, a grade of NC for a grade of C- or below. Courses graded CR/NC will not satisfy degree requirements in School of Music graduate programs and still require tuition and fees be paid.
GPA and academic probation

You must maintain at least a 3.0 Grade Point Average (GPA) in all coursework in your major area and you must maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.0 for all graduate-level courses. If your cumulative GPA falls below 3.0, you will be placed on academic probation. You must raise your GPA to 3.0 or above by the end of the following semester (probationary period) to be returned to regular status.

If you have not raised your GPA to 3.0 by the end of the semester of probation, you will not be allowed to re-enroll in coursework and will be dismissed, unless the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs acts favorably on a recommendation from the faculty members in your area that you continue in graduate study on continued probation.

Transfer credits

At the doctoral level, credits do not transfer per se. Prior coursework may be taken into consideration when developing a course of study with your Doctoral Program Planning Committee (DPPC).

Tuition and Fees

Graduate students are assessed the standard resident or non-resident graduate tuition rate for every credit in which they are enrolled, including undergraduate credits. Music classes carry an additional course fee which, like tuition, is assessed per credit hour. If you have a Graduate Teaching Assistantship (GTA), the tuition and course fees are waived at the percentage stated in your GTA contract.

All graduate students pay required campus fees. Lawrence campus fees are assessed per credit hour if you are enrolled in fewer than 6 credits. If you are enrolled in 6 or more credit hours, you will pay the flat rate. The School of Music GTA does not cover campus fees. Tuition and fee information, including the current rates, can be found at KU Financial Aid & Scholarships, and on the Registrar’s Comprehensive Fee Schedule.

Refunds for dropped classes

The longer you remain enrolled in a course, the lower your refund will be if you decide to drop the course. Check the Registrar’s Office website, for the academic calendar that provides deadlines for dropping classes and the refund rate. You may drop courses online up to the last day to drop. After that date, you may only drop if you complete a FacEx Appeal and it is approved.

Financial Support

Graduate Studies funding opportunities

The KU Office of Graduate Studies offers a limited number of fellowships, travel funds, and scholarships to assist academically superior students. Summer fellowships are available to currently enrolled Doctoral students. Only one or two students may be nominated for each award. Nominations are made by the area coordinator, who submits the nomination packet electronically to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. Let your area coordinator know if you are interested in being nominated. Application forms are available on the Graduate Studies website in late December or early January. Information on the application and nomination process is also on that site: KU Graduate Studies.

Graduate Teaching Assistantships (GTAs)

Graduate teaching assistantships (GTAs) are offered in ensembles, musicology, music theory and composition, music education and therapy, and in many areas of performance. Normally, a GTA can be renewed for a maximum of 16 semesters while working on a Doctoral degree.

To be considered for a graduate teaching assistantship, complete a GTA application, available on the Student Academic Resources page, resources for academic services. Applications are due in the Graduate Student Services office, 446 Murphy, by March 1. Speak with your advisor or area coordinator about available GTAs or about seeking reappointment for your current GTA. Students seeking a GTA outside of the School of Music should work directly with the hiring department in that area.

Graduate Teaching Assistantship (GTA) tuition waivers

GTA tuition waivers are as follows:
• 40% appointment is 100% tuition and course fee waiver
• 30% appointment is 75% tuition and course fee waiver
• 20% appointment is 50% tuition and course fee waiver
• 10% appointment is 25% tuition and course fee waiver

There is complete information regarding GTAs and the benefits that come with them at this website: KU Policy: Benefits for Graduate Research Assistants, Graduate Teaching Assistants, and Graduate Assistants. It explains what is covered for each level of appointment.


A small number of music scholarships are available for graduate students. Please speak with your area coordinator about what is available to you.

School of Music Student Opportunity funds

The School of Music provides funds to support travel for the professional development of students and to increase the visibility of its academic programs. These funds are for students participating in national and regional conferences in which they perform, present papers, or hold workshops. The funds also support students invited to perform or present at other regional, national, or international venues. To request School of Music opportunity funds, please complete the School of Music Opportunity Fund - Student Travel Reimbursement Request form.

Degree Requirements

YOU are responsible for knowing your degree requirements. The faculty and staff of the School of Music are here to assist you in any way they can, but the timely completion of your degree depends on you.

Residency RequirementAccording to MEMT policy, doctoral students must enroll in two semesters of resident study, which may include the summer session to complete a minimum program of engagement. They do not need to be consecutive, but during this time you must be involved full-time in academic pursuits. This may be accomplished through either of the following:
  • Two semesters of full-time enrollment in KU coursework, as defined by University Policy OR
  • At least 18 hours of enrollment in KU coursework spread out over several part-time semesters

Summer enrollment is not required to maintain registration, but summer enrollments may be counted toward the 18 part-time pre-comprehensive hours. The various programs of study for the school’s doctoral degrees prescribe a minimum number of coursework credits and other degree requirements. Relevant prior graduate coursework may be taken into consideration when developing programs of study.

The course of study in each major field is found in the online catalog at KU Academic Catalog: School of Music. Please obtain an updated copy of your degree sheet from the Graduate Student Services Coordinator to complete your Plan of Study.

New Fall 2021

NOTE: Any requested change to a faculty-approved degree program must come before the Committee on Graduate Studies in Music (COGSIM) as a student petition. This includes, but is not limited to, changes in required credits, courses, or policies.

Doctoral degree program time constraint:

All Doctoral degrees must be completed by 8 years from the time of enrollment in doctoral coursework. Students may petition for a one-year extension beyond the 8-year requirement. Petitions for extensions go to the Committee on Graduate Studies in Music (COGSIM).

ElectivesElective hours can be selected from any music or non-music courses. Elective courses must be at the graduate level (500 or above) to count toward the degree and approved by your advisor.
MEMT 812: Research in Music Ed & Music Therapy

MEMT 812, Research in Music Ed & Music Therapy, is required for all graduate students in MEMT and satisfies the Graduate Studies “Research Skills and Responsible Scholarship” (RSRS) requirement for doctoral students. All doctoral students must meet the RSRS requirement before proceeding to the oral comprehensive exam. 

Waiver or Substitution for MEMT 812

If you have taken a comparable Research and Bibliography graduate course at another university, you may request a waiver or substitution of MEMT 812. To request a waiver, provide your Doctoral Program Planning Committee (DPPC) - see description below) with a syllabus of the course you wish to use in place of MEMT 812.

Research Skills

Doctoral students in MEMT meet the Research Skills requirement by completing 3 research projects suitable for publication. These may be developed and completed independently or in consultation with appropriate doctoral faculty members. There must be a project for three different types of research methodology, most commonly representing methods of qualitative, descriptive, experimental, or historical (including the history and logic of ideas) research. The student may propose other divergent methodologies if those fit their program of study more adequately. It is up to the DPPC to approve the methodologies each student utilizes.

Each completed project is reviewed typically by the student’s DPPC, which rules in the majority whether the project is of sufficient quality for publication in a national, refereed research journal in music education or music therapy. The committee chair will determine if the projects will be reviewed by additional faculty not a part of the committee. Single-author studies that have been published or accepted for publication in such journals may be used to demonstrate these skills.

Completion of each of the 3 research projects must be certified by the student’s mentor/advisor in MEMT.

Doctoral Program Planning Committee:

3 members

Your Doctoral Program Planning Committee (DPPC) is made up of 3 members of the MEMT faculty, who advise students on degree requirements throughout their career. They will remain on the student’s dissertation committee (see details below). The DPPC approves the student’s anticipated coursework and practica and should be in place by the end of the student’s 1st semester. Doctoral students should reference the Dissertation Timeline to ensure that they plan for deadlines and milestones. 

Doctoral Program Planning Committees for PhD students in MEMT are comprised of three members from the MEMT faculty, including their major professor or advisor. 

Dissertation Committee:
5 members required

Your Dissertation Committee requires a minimum of 5-members, who administer your Oral Comprehensive Examination and the Doctoral Final Examination/Defense. PhD students must submit the Graduate Student Advisory Committee form (.pdf) before the Oral Comprehensive Exam can be scheduled. Members of your committee must hold Graduate Faculty status. Discuss the membership of your committee with your advisor and personally ask each faculty member to serve and sign the Committee form. 

Only faculty members with privileges to serve or chair a doctoral committee may be selected. A member without those privileges may not serve on a doctoral committee. 

The Dissertation Committee for PhD students in MEMT is comprised of:
•    The Committee Chair or Advisor (MEMT faculty),
•    Two faculty from MEMT,
•    One faculty member from anywhere across the university (may be MEMT or MUSC faculty) 
•    One Graduate Studies Representative (see details below).

Graduate Studies Representative (formerly Outside Member)

The Graduate Studies Representative is a graduate faculty member outside of the MUSIC department. This member is not required to attend your degree recitals or to grade them. The Graduate Studies Representative must be a member of the Graduate Faculty. As the Graduate Studies Representative, they are a voting member of the committee and may or may not participate in questioning you during your Oral Comprehensive and Doctoral Final Exams. The role of the Graduate Studies Representative is to report any unsatisfactory or unusual aspects of the examination to the Chair of your advisory committee, the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in Music, the School of Music Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, and may be escalated to the Vice Provost of Graduate Studies.

Committee Oral Exam/Defense attendance:

All five members of your advisory committee must participate in the Oral Comprehensive Exam and the Doctoral Final Exam/Defense. For doctoral oral examinations, all members of your committee must be physically present for the Oral Comprehensive Examination or Final Oral Examination/Defense to commence (see oral exam attendance policy).

The student, the committee chair, and the Graduate Studies Representative must all be physically present at the examination. Mediated attendance by any of these three is prohibited without special permission from the Graduate Studies Office.

When a situation arises in which a committee member cannot be physically present, attendance via mediated means is acceptable at the discretion of the committee chair. In cases where the student prefers an examination in which all committee members are physically present, the student’s preference shall be honored.

Graduate progress toward degreeGraduate students in the School of Music must maintain an expected level of academic performance throughout their program to maintain good academic standing. Criteria for evaluating satisfactory performance include:
  1. a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher and a GPA of 3.0 or higher in the major area;
  2. academic and scholarly integrity;
  3. compliance with academic policies at the University, School, and Area level; and
  4. satisfactory progress toward completion of the degree, to be evaluated yearly as determined by the following:
  • satisfaction of diagnostic deficiencies in the first 3 semesters of enrollment;
  • satisfactory completion of at least 1 credit that meets degree requirements each semester of enrollment.

Students who are unable to complete degree requirements during any semester due to injuries, illness, financial difficulties, or family emergencies should submit a request for a Leave of Absence. Failure to request a Leave of Absence will not relieve the student of the requirements to continue to make progress toward the degree as defined above.

Failure to make progress toward the degree as defined above will result in a student not being in good academic standing and the student will be put on probation or dismissed from the program. The School will evaluate graduate students pursuing more than one degree program based on their progress toward meeting the requirements of each program individually.

Written Final Documents

All doctoral students in the School of Music have a written document that they will defend at their Doctoral Final Exam/Defense. PhD students in Musicology and Music Theory will defend a dissertation. PhD students in Musicology and Music Theory will defend a dissertation. All documents are submitted online for publication after they have been defended and approved.

Dissertation/Document proposalALL doctoral-level students must submit a dissertation/document proposal to their committee members. You will find guidance for writing an effective proposal in to DMA Document Guidelines; although this attachment was drafted with the DMA document in mind, the advice is still practical for PhD dissertations. Students should submit their proposals to their committee members for approval via email and obtain physical signatures on the Graduate Research Proposal Approval Form (.pdf). These signatures confirm that you have provided your topic to your committee members and that they approve of the topic. After obtaining signatures from each committee member, return the completed form to the Graduate Student Services Coordinator. Your advisor and committee members will work with you on the content and scope of your proposal.
Musicology, Music Theory, and Composition major timelinePhD and DMA-Composition students must submit a proposal to all members of their committee no later than the end of the semester in which the Oral Exam is completed.
Formatting requirements for dissertations and documents

The Graduate Studies Office has formatting requirements for all PhD dissertations. These formatting requirements can be found on this webpage: KU Libraries: Thesis and Dissertation Formatting. The page also has information on Multimedia Files, Copyright and Issues of Responsible Research, Preparing Your Manuscript and services available for writing and preparing your manuscript for publication.

Submission of dissertation and document for publishing

All School of Music doctoral students must submit the final draft of the DMA document or PhD dissertation to UMI (ProQuest) publishing. The instructions for submission can be found at the Graduate Studies website, KU Graduate Studies: Submitting. Submitting your dissertation or document to UMI for publication is a graduation requirement. The final document must be submitted for school approval no later than the semester deadline for meeting degree requirements for graduation. The deadline can be found on the Graduate Studies calendar, KU Graduate Studies: Graduation.

Signed title page, signed approval page, and abstract for your fileTo complete requirements for graduation, all doctoral students, PhD and DMA, who have defended a final document must submit to the Graduate Student Services Coordinator, 446 Murphy:
  • a signed title page and
  • signed approval page

You are advised to take the signature pages with you to the Doctoral Final Exam/Defense to get the necessary signatures while your committee is convened.


The Graduate Studies Office has deadlines each semester for meeting all degree requirements including exams passed, completion of the dissertation or document and applying to graduate in Enroll & Pay. Those dates are on the Graduate Studies Graduate Calendar, KU Graduate Studies: Graduation, under Students. Extensions will not be granted. Your submitted Program of Study should include the approximate times you have planned for these events. You are strongly encouraged to meet with the Graduate Student Services Coordinator or the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in Music when you have completed your Written Qualifying Examinations to review the timing of the remainder of your degree requirements.

Application for graduation

You are urged to complete an application for graduation at the beginning of the semester you plan to graduate or the semester prior if meeting the early graduation deadline (without enrollment). This is done in Enroll and Pay. You must have submitted your application to graduate by the Graduate Studies completion deadline. If you do not graduate the semester you apply, your application to graduate will be rescinded and you will need to reapply for the future semester you plan to graduate.

Are you finished?

Doctoral students must be especially focused on the timing of the final semesters of their degree program. You are strongly encouraged to meet with the Graduate Student Services Coordinator or Associate Dean for Academic Affairs well before you plan to graduate to make certain you are meeting all requirements, that you know what remains, and that you will be approved to graduate.

Graduation information

Degrees are awarded three times a year to graduate students who have met the requirements specified by the Graduate School as found in the Academic Catalog. The KU Commencement events occur only once a year at the end of the Spring semester for Spring graduates and those who graduated in the preceding Summer and Fall.

Hooding ceremony

The School of Music graduation Special Recognition Ceremony takes place on the Saturday immediately after finals week and includes the hooding of graduating School of Music Doctoral students. Only those students who have successfully passed the final defense are eligible to participate in the doctoral hooding. A student whose defense has been scheduled during the summer semester may petition the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs for permission to participate in the School of Music hooding ceremony.

The KU Graduate Studies office holds a doctoral hooding ceremony at the Lied Center for all KU graduating doctoral students. Information on the Graduate Studies Doctoral Hooding Ceremony can be found on the Graduate Studies website, KU Doctoral Hooding Ceremony. Please check this site for requirements, tickets, date, and time.

Information on the University commencement can be found at KU Commencement. To order your diploma, refer to KU Registrar: Diplomas.

COGSIM (Committee on Graduate Studies in Music)

The Committee on Graduate Studies in Music consists of 5 faculty members elected by the School of Music faculty and 2 graduate student representatives selected early in the fall semester by the COGSIM faculty members from a list of graduate student volunteers. The committee shall:

  • monitor artistic and academic requirements and standards of graduate programs in cooperation with the areas;
  • consider requests for curricular changes and changes in degree requirements from the areas and make recommendations to the faculty;
  • act on petitions from graduate students. Any requested change to a faculty approved program of study must come before COGSIM as a student petition.
Graduate Student PetitionsFor exceptions to degree requirements or other policies and regulations within each degree program, students must submit a petition to COGSIM. Committee decisions will be communicated by the Graduate Student Services Coordinator.
Appealing a Final Grade

For a grade appeal, the student must first attempt to resolve the issue by contacting the instructor within six months. If the grade conflict remains unresolved, a student may initiate an appeal of a final course grade if, but only if, he or she believes that there has been an improper application of the grading procedure the instructor has announced for the course.

A graduate student may initiate their appeal to COGSIM by completing a Graduate Student Petition form. A student may appeal the decision made by COGSIM to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and, ultimately, to the University Judicial Board.

If the student’s appeal is sustained at any level, the final course grade shall be assigned in accordance with Section 2.3.5 of the University Senate Rules and Regulations. The Association Dean for Academic Affairs may be consulted at any time for advice on any aspect of the process.

Academic Misconduct

See the University Senate Rules & Regulations for the complete University policy on Academic Misconduct including definitions and examples.

KU Information

Both the official KU website and KU School of Music website contain a wealth of information. You can find information on the KU website about parking, student health services, recreation services, KU ID cards, email, and enrollment.

International Support Services

If you are an International Student, please become familiar with International Support Services (ISS). There are often variations in each situation; the ISS advisors can best advise you on how academic decisions, such as taking a leave of absence, dropping below full-time status, or changing majors, can affect your visa status.

Grievance Policy and Procedures

Grievances arising within the School of Music must be heard under the School’s Grievance Procedure. The School of Music grievance procedure applies to the faculty members, unclassified professional staff, and students.

School of Music Directory

All School of Music faculty (including each area coordinator) and staff can be found at People Directory.

MEMT Doctoral Dissertation Timeline

Timeline towards Graduation: 
Students must work out a timeline which includes course completion and degree requirements. Keep in mind there is only a very small amount of flexibility in working out this timeline. Failure to adhere to the timeline hinders your ability to graduate at the time planned. 

Plan your own timeline to degree one year prior to your estimated degree completion date. The following is in reverse order, start here and work backwards. This process will help provide a detailed schedule to help prevent unnecessary surprises. 


1) Start with the graduation deadline for the given term you plan to graduate. Deadlines for a given semester are sent via email each fall/spring semester and are posted for each academic year on the Graduate Studies Calendar or the SOM Graduate Calendar. Students must use the actual posted date when they start their timeline. 

Students who meet all degree requirements within the first two weeks of classes in a fall or spring term or within the first week of classes in a summer term will be eligible to graduate without enrolling in classes for that term; providing students were enrolled in the previous term (excluding summer). These are considered “early graduation deadlines” for a given semester and dates are posted on the Graduate Studies Calendar at or the SOM Graduate Calendar for the exact date applicable.

2) Move back two weeks from the date in #1. This should be the last planned date for students to schedule their Final Doctoral Examination/Dissertation Defense. 

3) Move back two weeks from the date in #2. Students, with approval of the major advisor, must circulate the final exam copy of the dissertation to all committee members two weeks prior to the date of the scheduled Final Doctoral Examination/Dissertation Defense.

4) Move back two weeks from the date in #3. Students begin the process by contacting the committee members for possible available dates/times/location to hold the Final Examination/Dissertation Defense. Once a date/time/location is confirmed, students must submit the Doctoral Exam Authorization Form (.pdf) and submit signatures to This should be at least 3 weeks prior to the scheduled exam date. 

5) The committee chair agrees that the dissertation is ready and approves students for scheduling of the Final Examination/Dissertation Defense. 

6) All research involving human subjects and all other activities which even in part involve such research, regardless of sponsorship must be approved by the Office of Research. Policy information can be found at: KU Research: Human Subjects Research Policies and Procedures

7) The faculty advisor approves and submits the research proposal (.pdf) approval form (first three chapters) via email to the Dissertation Committee.

8) The dissertation idea is approved by the faculty advisor (chair of committee).

9) This is the first day possible students may hold their scheduled Comprehensive Oral Examination. Remember this date must be more than 1 month prior to the date of the Doctoral Final Examination.

10) Move back two weeks from the date in # 9 - Students, with approval of their major advisor, must circulate the final copy of the dissertation to all committee members two weeks prior to the date of the scheduled dissertation defense.

11) Move back three weeks from the date in #10 - Students submit the Exam Authorization Form (.pdf) via email to This should be at least 3 weeks prior to the scheduled exam date.

12) Move back one week from the date in #17 - Students begin the process by contacting the committee members for possible available dates/times to hold the Comprehensive Oral Examination. Once a date/time is confirmed, students should make a reservation for a room in either the Music Library or the MEMT suite. 

13) The committee chair agrees that the students are ready and approves the scheduling of the Comprehensive Oral Examination. Students should check their MEMT file and update their MEMT Checklist and Degree Requirement Program Plan as needed with their advisor and committee. 

14) Students should contact to inform the office of the name of their dissertation advisor.

MEMT Doctoral Dissertation Format

General Requirements for Dissertation:
Review all applicable information from the Graduate Studies Electronic Thesis/Dissertation website concerning formatting and submission of the dissertation as well as this document when beginning to enroll for doctoral dissertation coursework.

Writing Style:
Writing style must follow APA or Turabian style depending on the type of dissertation. If information in the Graduate Studies Dissertation Instructions conflicts with the APA or Turabian style, the Graduate Studies Instructions must be followed and will override the APA or Turabian regulations. In all other areas, the APA or Turabian guidelines must be followed.

Paper Requirement (for printed and bound Dissertation):
8 1/2 x 11 inch – White - Acid-free - Weight of 20#, 24#, or 28# bond are the norm (not restricted) with - Rag content of 25% with watermark (hold paper to light to see). The paper must have no discernible background pattern. If you do not supply the paper to the bindery you may use what they have available as long as it is 8 ½ x 11 inch, white, acid free, watermarked, and has no discernible background pattern.
Unacceptable paper: Recycled - Erasable bond - Patterned

Copyright is not required but is highly encouraged. If at a later date a student wants to substantiate a copyright claim, registration of copyright is a prerequisite to legal action.

Read over the information on embargo on the Graduate Studies website. Typically, MEMT students do not elect to embargo their document. Talk it over with your committee chair regarding instituting an Embargo on your document if you still have questions.

Title & Acceptance Pages:
Original signatures are required on the 2 sets of title pages and acceptance pages. Take the prepared title pages (only) to the defense/exam so that the committee can sign them all at that time if possible.
The student will obtain original signatures from the committee chair on the acceptance pages once the document has been approved for electronic submission. Retain the signed original title pages and acceptance pages for your records and send a scanned copy to to meet your degree requirements. 

The following is the appropriately worded paragraph for the MEMT dissertation that will be used in place of the paragraph shown on the Graduate Studies title page example. If your emphasis is not Music Therapy, simply remove “(Music Therapy)” from the last line of the paragraph below.

Submitted to the graduate degree program in Music Education and Music Therapy and the Graduate Faculty of the University of Kansas in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Music Education (Music Therapy)

Electronic Submission:
Read carefully and print out all applicable documentation concerning electronic submission of the dissertation on the Graduate Studies website. Complete all corrections as directed by the dissertation committee. Upon final approval by the chair of your committee, obtain chair’s signature on the original acceptance pages, prepare your document and submit your dissertation electronically. After submission, the student will receive a system generated email confirming that the document has been submitted and cleared of all necessary checks and will soon be delivered to ProQuest/UMI for publishing.

Doctoral Surveys:
These are online surveys. To complete the Doctoral Completion Survey (DCS) and the Survey of Earned Doctorates (SED) go to the Graduate Studies webpage for students who are preparing to graduate.
Begin with the DCS. If you exit the survey prior to clicking the" Submit" button at the end, your responses will not be saved.
Then, you will be taken to an external site to complete the Survey of Earned Doctorates (SED). You must forward the Certificate of Completion for the doctoral completion survey receipt after completing the SED to