Students in the Master of Music program who plan to pursue additional graduate study are strongly urged to consider selecting the Thesis Option as part of their degree requirements. The completion of a Master's Thesis is documentation of one's scholarship and generally is considered to indicate expertise in a given area of study. Students pursuing the Thesis Option may register for 3, 6, or 9 hours of credit in MUSC 6999 Thesis in Music as approved electives.

Prior to selecting the Thesis Option, the student must establish his/her graduate faculty committee. The student will work with the committee to develop a thesis topic proposal and complete the thesis document under the direct guidance of the committee chairperson. It is expected that the manuscript will demonstrate high standards of scholarship. Once the topic has been chosen, a formal proposal is prepared. The proposal, when fully developed, must be approved by the candidate's committee. During the research and writing of the thesis document, the candidate is advised to consult regularly with the major professor and the other members of the committee. Following approval of the committee, the document must be defended orally.