PhD in Music Education

sgps-alison butler"I was attracted to Western for three reasons: the large music education department, the financial support and care for graduate students, and the adventure of studying abroad."  Alison Butler, PhD Candidate, Music Education

Learn more about Alison Butler and our PhD program

Program Requirements

  • Theories of Music Education (Music 9640)
  • Research in Music Education (Music 9639a/b)
  • 2 elective courses in music education
  • Course in advanced research methods
  • Qualifying Examination
  • Dissertation Proposal Defense
  • Dissertation and Oral Defense

Each PhD student will have a PhD Advisory Committee, which will be responsible for approving the student's course selection and comprehensive examination.

The dissertation proposal and dissertation itself will be written under the supervision of a dissertation supervisor and second reader.

For further details about PhD program requirements, please consult the Graduate Student Handbook.

Timeline Progression

timeline progression


  • Students are encouraged to develop their topics for each of the 2 Qualifying Examination papers (Literature/Theoretical Framework and Methodology) throughout Terms 4 and 5. Consultation with faculty is highly encouraged.
  • By May 1 (start of Term 6), each student should have a confirmed dissertation supervisory committee (normally a dissertation supervisor and a second reader). The dissertation supervisory committee will determine a deadline for submission of the Qualifying Examination papers. The dissertation proposal should follow from the Qualifying Examination.
  • The Dissertation Proposal Defense should be completed as early as possible in Term 7, following successful completion of the Qualifying Examination.

Recently Completed Dissertations

Meet our Students