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CCM, Composition, Musicology and TheoryCollege-Conservatory of MusicComposition, Musicology & TheoryUniversity of Cincinnati

CCM, Composition, Musicology and Theory

Thesis and Dissertation Requirements

Guidelines for Submission of Thesis & Dissertations
(with Sample Documents)

The student must submit a separate copy of the document in final draft form to each member of the committee no later than the first Monday of January for April Graduation, the first Monday of March for August graduation, and the first Monday of September for December graduation. This copy must be certified in writing by the advisor as being basically acceptable.

Each reader will review this draft and return it to the student in as timely a manner as possible. The student is responsible for making any revisions requested; the advisor is responsible for reconciling any disagreements between readers and shall communicate the resolutions to the readers.

Readers may request that their marked copies be returned to them and may use them to ensure compliance with directions for revisions.


Students must submit two paper copies of the final version of the thesis/dissertation as well as a text file on a disc (including the abstract) to the Division of Research and Advanced Studies no later than the published deadline date for the quarter of graduation. Note that these copies must already have been approved by the advisor and the readers on the signature page. Final copies of theses and dissertations may also be submitted electronically; further information about this option can be obtained from the Division of Research and Advanced Studies. All of the information in this section is also available through their website (

NOTE: These guidelines refer only to work done during the regular academic year. Because many faculty members are not available during the summer term, students who plan to graduate in August must make certain that their advisor and readers are available to approve the document in its final form in accordance with these CCM guidelines and the deadlines established by the Division of Research and Advanced Studies.

To see a sample proposal, ask your advisor to request one from the Graduate Thesis & Research Committee chair.

(excerpted from the CCM Graduate Handbook)

A. General Information

  1. Approval for all thesis, dissertation, and lecture-recital topics must be secured from the Graduate Thesis and Research Committee.
  2. The M.M. thesis in composition is the only paper that will not require a proposal submitted to the Thesis Committee.
  3. An advisor for the project should be engaged by the student before the proposal is submitted.
  4. The advisor's signature must appear on the title page of the proposals indicating his or her approval.
  5. If the student is unable to secure an advisor, the CCM Academic Affairs Office will assign one.
  6. All proposals must be typewritten or computer printed.
  7. Six copies of the proposal must be submitted to the Chairman of the Thesis Committee no later than one week before a meeting of the Thesis Committee. (Scheduled Committee meeting dates are posted on the CCM Graduate Bulletin Board.) For a lecture-recital, the proposal must be submitted at least ten weeks prior to the date scheduled for its presentation.
  8. A folder of sample proposals is kept at the main desk in the CCM library.

B. Form

  1. The form to be followed in a thesis, dissertation or lecture-recital proposal will vary somewhat according to the subject. In general, three-to-four typewritten (double-spaced) pages of text plus bibliography are usually sufficient. Care should be taken in matters of writing style, spelling, bibliographical form, etc. The following information should be included:

        a.   The degree program in which the student is enrolled.
        b.   The student's address.
        c.    A description of the topic the student proposes to research.
        d.    A statement about why the topic he been chosen (lack of information about it, personal interest in it, etc.)
        e.    A description of how the topic will be covered. (A tentative outline is usually helpful to show the direction and procedure for the research project.)
        f.    A bibliography of pertinent sources already examined and others that appear to be important.

  2. Although the topic should already have been investigated to a significant degree at the time the proposal is submitted, it is understood that the very nature of research calls for investigation which reveals information not available at the time. Therefore, the Committee does not expect that the topic be investigated exactly as proposed, nor that the appended bibliography be the final one. It is necessary to know that the topic can be expanded by research and that there is enough bibliographical background to accomplish the investigation.
  3. In the case of Ph.D. dissertations, which must be the result of completely original research, the candidate must first check Doctoral Dissertations in Musicology (call number ML 128 .M3 I55 1984, and supplements) to determine whether the topic has already been claimed. After Committee approval has been granted, the candidate must register the topic. Forms for this purpose are in the office of the Academic Dean.
  4. For DMA lecture-recitals, the presentation is approximately half lecture and half recital. Approximate timings of each portion should be included, as well as titles and composers of the works to be performed. An evening lecture-recital ordinarily lasts about an hour and one given during the daytime class period no more than fifty minutes.