Department of Music

Financial Support

Brown offers five years of guaranteed support in the form of a full tuition scholarship, health benefits, and a cash stipend that is competitive with that offered by other top-tier programs.

Summer support is funded for four years, over and above the academic-year stipend. Ph.D students in the music department hold a Fellowship in the first year of study, with no TA or proctorship obligations. During three of the remaining four years they hold either Teaching Assistantships or Proctorships. In the remaining year they hold a Dissertation Fellowship. There is some flexibility as to when to use up the final year of fellowship. Some people use it to fund dissertation research in the fourth year of study; others obtain external grants for that research and defer the fellowship for dissertation write-up time at Brown. (In other words, external funding does not replace Brown funding: students who win one year’s worth of external support still receive a full five years of funding from Brown, on top of that year of external support). Graduate Teaching Assistantships and Proctorships in music normally require up to twenty hours of work per week during the school year.

Graduate School Five-Year Guarantee

International Students

International graduate students are funded in exactly the same way as American students. If you are admitted to the program, you will receive five years of funding through fellowships and teaching assistantships.

More Than Five Years

The graduate school frequently offers sixth year funding, including the standard stipend, summer funding, tuition waiver, and health insurance. This is dependent on your progress toward the degree, the department's teaching needs and available funding. Students receiving sixth-year funding are expected to teach a course or serve as a teaching assistant during both terms of the sixth year.

In addition, the graduate school has also developed several interdisciplinary options for humanities and social science scholars to fund a sixth year of study while in residence at institutions or departments within Brown, ranging from the Cogut Center for the Humanities to the Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs.

The graduate school offers some financial incentives for obtaining external funding. In practice, if you receive a major external grant, equivalent to a year of funding (for example, to conduct dissertation research away from campus), then you are able to defer one year of the funding that Brown guarantees to Ph.D. students, and reserve it for a 6th year of study.

All forms of sixth-year funding apply equally to American and international students.

Additional Information

Applicants to the program should submit the online application, three letters of recommendation, a personal statement, writing sample and/or documentation of creative work, and transcripts from previous university studies.
Learn about our graduate programs in Musicology and Ethnomusicology, and Music and Multimedia Composition.