REQUIREMENTS FOR SATISFACTORY PROGRESS TOWARD THE DEGREE

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General

Progress through the M.A. program is marked by five stages, some of which are determined by the Division of Research and Graduate Studies and others by the Department of Music. The five stages are:

1) Classified status (requires Department and Division of Research and Graduate Studies approval);

2) Completion of the Graduate Writing Skills Requirement (requires Department approval);

3) Submission of the Petition for Advancement to Candidacy (requires Department and Division of Research and Graduate Studies approval);

4) Successful completion of Music 298 or Music 299 (requires Department approval);

5) Online application for graduation (requires Department and Division of Research and Graduate Studies approval).

Throughout these stages students are evaluated to ensure that they are making satisfactory progress toward the degree. The M.A. program in Music is designed to be completed in four semesters. While there may be rare exceptions, satisfactory progress will normally be determined by the following criteria:

• Classification: Graduate students admitted conditionally classified must complete program admission conditions in order to achieve classified standing (full admission). Students are expected to promptly remove any conditions and be eligible for classification at the end of the first semester following admission.

• Grade Point Average: Graduate students must maintain a 3.0 gpa each semester.

• Course Load: Students are expected to enroll in at least one of the 3-unit core seminar each semester until the core seminars are completed - a total of 12 units.

• Continuous Enrollment: University policy requires graduate students to be continuously enrolled at the university every fall and spring semester until the awarding of the degree. If students have applied for graduation during the summer, they must maintain continuous enrollment in that term as well. This policy does not apply to students who have been granted an official leave of absence. Students must maintain continuous enrollment in the program. 

• Advising: M.A. students are required to meet with the Graduate Program Coordinator for advising each semester.

Students who do not meet the standards of satisfactory program will not be considered for financial aid, and may be subject to academic probation or dismissal from the program.

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Conditional Classification

Some new students are admitted to conditionally classified status. Students may remain conditionally classified until they have accumulated 10 units of credit. During this time, which should not extend beyond the first semester, they must remove all conditions for classification. These conditions most frequently include:

• Completion of the department's diagnostic entrance examinations in music history and music theory. See the Graduate Program Coordinator for details.

• Completing any remedial work indicated by diagnostic exam results.

Students must be classified by the time they accumulate 10 units. Otherwise, and in accordance with University policy, they may be denied permission to count towards the degree any units in excess of the allowable 10.

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Classification

When all conditions have been met, the student is eligible for full classification, which is full admission to the MA program. Contact the Graduate Program Coordinator to make this request.

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Graduate Writing Skills Requirement

Before advancing to candidacy, students must pass the Graduate Writing Skills Requirement. Upon entry to the MA program in Music, a degree of writing competency should be equivalent to a passing grade in English 160W or on the University's Upper Division Writing Examination. Students for whom English is a second language should be aware that while a TOEFL score of 550 is adequate for admission to the MA program in Music, it will probably not be adequate for passing the Department's Graduate Writing Skills Requirement. Normally, the Graduate Writing Skills Requirement should be fulfilled during the student's first fall semester of enrollment. The Graduate Writing Skills Requirement is a component of Music 220, Seminar in Bibliography and Methods of Research. Students who pass all components of Music 220, except the Graduate Writing Skills Requirement, will undertake a developmental writing program until Department standards are met. The Department standards for the Graduate Writing Skills Requirement are included in the course materials for Music 220.

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Petition of Advancement to Candidacy: Eligibility

Advancement to Candidacy is a procedure that provides the student with a program of study that has been officially reviewed and approved by the student's program faculty and by the graduate dean. Students who have been advanced to candidacy have official permission to proceed toward qualifying for the degree.

After a student is classified and after satisfactory completion of at least 9 units, the student may be advanced to candidacy. Normally this process would take place during the student's second year of graduate study. Advancement requires submitting a specific list of courses to be completed for the MA degree and passing of the Graduate Writing Skills Requirement.

The Graduate Writing Skills Requirement (Music 220) must be passed prior to advancement to candidacy. In addition, student's Faculty Mentor should be consulted with regard to specific electives or courses of interest to be included in the program of study. The Petition for Advancement to Candidacy requires the signature of the Graduate Program Coordinator and must be approved by the Division of Research and Graduate Studies. Students need to follow the Division of Research and Graduate Studies calendar for the submission deadline and arrange a meeting with the Graduate Program Coordinator at least two-weeks prior.  

For further information, see the following link:

http://www.fresnostate.edu/academics/gradstudies/requirements/advancement.html

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Petition of Advancement to Candidacy: Policies for Graduate Degrees

The approved degree program for the graduate degree is a cohesive pattern of specific requirements for the program and additional courses selected to meet the student's particular needs.  It consists of at least 30 units that must be completed within five years, beginning with the earliest course taken toward the degree.  Only graduate courses (200-series) and such upper-division courses (100-series) as are recommended by the colleges, schools, or departments and approved by the University Graduate Committee are acceptable for use toward a graduate degree.  Other courses are counted in calculating the student's study load but cannot be counted toward the unit requirement for the degree.  Courses that were used to satisfy the requirements of a previous degree cannot be double-counted toward another degree. At least 21 units of a 30-unit program must be residence credit (courses taken through regular enrollment at California State University, Fresno).  No more than 9 units of transfer and/or California State University, Fresno Extension credit may be included in the 30-unit program, or no more than 18 units in the 60-unit program. Courses older than five years may not be included on the Petition of Advancement to Candidacy and used to fulfill requirements toward the master's degree.

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The Culminating Experience: Project (Music 298) or Thesis (Music 299)

The project or thesis represents the culminating experience in the master's program.  The "Graduate Recital Form" (http://www.fresnostate.edu/artshum/music/forms/index.html) must be submitted in the semester in which the student intends to graduate. Music 298 enrollment requires the signatures of the Faculty Mentor, Graduate Program Coordinator, and Department Chair. Students need to obtain the signature of their Faculty Mentor prior to submitting the form to the Graduate Program Coordinator. Forms must be submitted during the first two weeks of the semester.

Music Education Option students must consult with their Faculty Mentor prior to the semester of enrollment to determine whether to enroll in Music 298 (project) or Music 299 (thesis). Music Education Option students will be required to submit a proposal for either a project or thesis by at least the semester prior to enrollment.

If the project or thesis is not completed during the semester of enrollment, the student receives a grade of RP (Report in Progress) and will be required to enroll in Music 298C or Music 299C for 0 units until the project or thesis is completed. Enrollment for 0 units does not exempt the student from the payment of fees. Students may enroll twice for 298C or 299C with departmental approval. Additional registrations are not encouraged and must be approved by the Dean of Graduate Studies. Permissions and class numbers for 298C or 299C must be obtained from the Department.

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Performance Option (Music 298)

• Instrumental and Vocal Performance students are required to present a master's recital of 60-75 minutes, in at least three contrasting styles and should consult with their Faculty Mentor regarding any specific requirements. Conducting students must also consult with their Faculty Mentor regarding the specific requirements for their performance.

• In consultation with the student's Faculty Mentor, all Performance Option students are required to have a two-person Graduate Recital Committee. Students should submit the names of the committee members to the Graduate Program Coordinator at least one month prior to the Graduate Recital.

• Program notes are required of all Performance Option candidates. These notes must show evidence of appropriate research, analysis of the music, and graduate-level writing competence. A draft of the program notes must be approved by the Recital Committee at least one-month prior to the Graduate Recital.

 • It is the student's responsibility to follow all Music Department procedures for booking the Graduate Recital. Download and complete the "Degree Recital Procedures" and "Degree Recital Office" forms available at the following link: http://www.fresnostate.edu/artshum/music/forms/index.html

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Music Education Option Project (Music 298)

Students in the music education option may elect to do a project as their culminating experience. Students need to develop a well-organized and detailed proposal for the project to be submitted for approval by the Faculty Mentor in the semester prior to registering for Music 298. The proposal must demonstrate the feasibility and availability of necessary sources, as well as relevance of the project. Upon acceptance of the proposal, a project committee must be formed. Students must consult with their Faculty Mentor by the end of their second semester about specific requirements and deadlines for completing a music education project.

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Music Education Option Thesis (Music 299)

In addition to the project option described above, students in music education may elect to produce a thesis. The thesis topic should be chosen in consultation with the Faculty Mentor at least one semester prior to registering for Music 299. A well-organized and detailed proposal must be submitted. The proposal must demonstrate availability of research materials and relevance of the topic. It should include a provisional title and outline, a detailed abstract (1000 words min.) and annotated bibliography. For practical reasons, work on the thesis work will need to begin two or three semesters prior to registering for Music 299. Following the acceptance of the proposal, a three-person thesis committee must be formed. See the following link for specific thesis guidelines: https://www.fresnostate.edu/academics/gradstudies/thesis/

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