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College of Creative Arts and Media: School of Music

Performance, DMA

The primary objective of the Doctor of Musical Arts degree is the recognition of the highest achievement in music performance and teaching, preparing artist-pedagogues for careers in higher education and in the professional world.

The degree may be taken in performance and literature (with specialization in piano, collaborative piano, voice, vocal pedagogy, percussion, flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, saxophone, horn, trumpet, trombone, tuba, low brass, violin, viola, cello, double bass or conducting) or in composition.

Historical and theoretical knowledge sufficient to support individualized interpretations for performers and original creative work for composers is expected, as are writing and speaking skills needed to communicate clearly and effectively. To assist the student in achieving these objectives, the course of study includes requirements in performance or composition, academic coursework and research.

Interested students should check the program website for specific audition and application information.

Your Degree Plan


Aerial view of Martin and Woodburn Halls

Prepare for a career in higher education or the professional world with a rigorous course of study in the instrument of your choice.

As a DMA Performance student, you will gain:

  • Advanced competencies in performance.
  • Knowledge and skills in one or more fields of music outside the major, such as theory and analysis, history and literature, musicology and ethnomusicology, and pedagogy.
  • Competencies sufficient to understand texts in the repertoire. Voice majors are expected to be proficient in English, German, French and Italian diction, and to have general phonetic knowledge and skills that can be applied to other languages.

Take advantage of special options related to this major:

  • Honors

    Expand your curiosity — and enhance your curriculum — through the WVU Honors College. Two programs are offered: Honors Foundations for first- and second-year students and Honors EXCEL for third- and fourth-year students.

    Explore Honors

Learn by Doing

Learning happens outside the classroom. Get involved.

Performance majors may specialize in the following:

  • Piano
  • Voice
  • Flute
  • Oboe
  • Clarinet
  • Bassoon
  • Saxophone
  • Horn
  • Trumpet
  • Trombone
  • Tuba
  • Low brass (DMA only)
  • Percussion
  • Violin
  • Viola
  • Cello
  • Double Bass
Outside of the Evansdale Crossing building.

What you learn outside of the classroom is just as important as what you learn during class. We’ll help you follow your curiosity.

Places and Spaces

Learn about all of the places and spaces you'll learn in.

Program Facility - Creative Arts Center

Canady Creative Arts Center

The Loulie, Valerie and William Canady Creative Arts center boasts 4 exhibition spaces, 5 performance spaces, 33 individual practice rooms and 50 classrooms and studios with plenty of space to create. The loading dock at the rear of the building is a wonderful open-air space with stunning acoustics.

Explore the Canady Creative Arts Center
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Admission Requirements

To be eligible for admission into a graduate program at WVU an applicant must submit official, bachelor's degree transcripts from a regionally accredited institution and hold a GPA of at least 2.75. WVU operates decentralized admissions. Decentralized admissions allows each graduate program to set its own application requirements in addition to the University requirements.

Ready to take the next step?

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