Curriculum and Expectations of Students

The Ph.D. in Church Music is designed to foster in students the highest levels of knowledge and skill in the practice of church music and in research. The curriculum of the proposed program will be composed primarily of research-oriented courses in Church Music and related musical fields. Additionally, students will have the opportunity to pursue study in appropriate areas of other disciplines such as theology or church history in the Religion Department and/or George W. Truett Theological Seminary, educational psychology in the School of Education, or sociology in the Department of Sociology.

The D.M.A. in Church Music is designed to provide students with much of the same knowledge base and critical thinking ability as the Ph.D., but with the added component of strong performance skills.

As with most university doctoral degrees, the doctoral program in Church Music will require approximately 80 hours of course work beyond the baccalaureate degree. The Ph.D. and D.M.A. (48 hours) will both be based upon Baylor's Master of Music in Church Music degree (30 hours), for a total of 78 hours beyond the bachelor's degree. Appropriate leveling work may be required for students whose master's degree concentration was in an area other than Church Music. This leveling work may consist of a short-term seminar to be taken in late summer before the student begins classes in the fall; other leveling options may be utilized as well. Diagnostic examinations in music history, music theory, conducting, voice, and piano will be administered to each student. Deficiencies in these areas may be remediated through leveling work.

Courses and Curriculum

The curriculum for the Ph.D. in Church Music consists of courses and seminars in Church Music, music history and/or music theory, a minor area of study, and the writing of a dissertation. The curriculum for the D.M.A. in Church Music consists of courses and seminars in Church Music, music history and/or music theory, applied lessons, and the giving of recitals. 


Music 6341-Introduction to Research in Church Music

An introduction to the methodology of scholarly research and writing in church music. A study of bibliography, research technology, and methods of research, specifically as they relate to church music.

Music 6342-Research in Congregational Song

A study of philosophies and theologies of congregational song. Major components of this study will include reliance upon primary sources as well as study of key liturgists, authors, and composers.

Music 6343-Research in Church Music History

An in-depth study of selected significant developments, movements, and people in the history of church music. Scores, recordings, and major reference works, as well as primary and secondary monographs will be studied to glean insights and enlightenment for enhanced understanding of current trends in church music. Congregational song, which is covered in Music 6342, will be largely excluded from this course.

Music 6344-Research in Church Music Philosophy

An exploration and evaluation of the goals, motivations, responsibilities, and parameters affecting the use of music in congregational settings. Congregational song, which is covered in Music 6342, will be largely excluded from this course.

Music 6345-Research in Christian Worship

A seminar designed to explore the mutual influence between Christian worship and its surrounding culture.

Music 6346-Research in Music Ministry

A seminar designed to address various components of music ministry, their history, relationship to traditional pastoral ministry, relationship to current worship practices, and their future in the life and work of local congregations.

Music 6347-Research in Sacred Choral Music

A study of the communal and spiritual functions of church choirs for adults and youth. Careful attention to choral repertory will be an important facet of this study.

Music 6348-Professional Development and Teaching Practicum

Designed to assist church music professionals in gaining appropriate information and skills for launching effective careers in church music ministry or teaching. Subjects may include securing a position, understanding higher education, various approaches to research resulting in publishing and scholarly presentations, curriculum and course design, teaching effectiveness, and college music administration.

Music 6V99-Dissertation

A research and writing project designed to bring the student to the highest levels of knowledge about a specific topic in church music. The topic will be chosen in conjunction with a faculty advisor and the research and writing supervised by first and second readers. Emphasis will be placed on the use of primary source material, the discovery of new sources, the re-interpretation of received information, and other factors that constitute an original contribution to knowledge about church music.  

Curriculum Common to Both Degrees

Music 6341 Introduction to Research in Church Music 3 hours
Seminars: Music 6342-6347 (select five of the six) 15 hours
Music 6348 Professional Development and Teaching Practicum 3 hours
Music History and Music Theory 6 hours
Select from Music 5321-5328, Music 5329 Seminar in Musicology, Music 5319 Seminar in Ethnomusicology, Music 5355 Analysis Seminar, Music 5201 Pedagogy of Music Theory, Music 5V89 Special Research Topics  

Ph.D. only

Minor Area of Study 12 hours
Nine hours of 5000-level or above coursework must be taken in a single field of study other than Church Music. The remaining three hours are electives that may be taken in any field.
9 hours
Total 48 hours

D.M.A. only

Applied Music 16 hours
Performance Document (to accompany second recital) 3 hours
Recitals (2)
2 hours
Total 48 hours