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Program details on the graduate programs in the Schulich School of Music can be found in the  PDF version of the 2013-2014 university graduate course calendar.

Graduate Programs

NOTE: the choral conducting program will not be accepting applications for September 2013. Orchestral and Wind Band conducting (Master's only) are open for September 2013. In addition, Music Education will not be accepting PhD applications for September 2013 admission.


Application for Admission

Application information is available at Deadline Dates and Procedures and the online application form is available at Applying to Music.

Applicants (with some exceptions) who are not current McGill B.Mus. graduates are required to ask two instructors familiar with their work to send letters of recommendation. The names and email addresses of your referees are required when filling out the online application. Referees will receive an email and are able to submit letters electronically to McGill University. After successfully applying, applicants are able to upload required documents to their application; some exceptions apply such as audio and video material which must be sent separately (electronically) to the music admissions office. Transcripts written in a language other than English or French must be accompanied by a certified translation. This can also be uploaded with an unofficial trasncript. 

A non-refundable application fee of $102.60 in Canadian funds must accompany each application, otherwise it cannot be considered. This sum must be paid by credit card if the online application is used. In addition, Performance applicants must also pay a non-refundable audition fee of $61.56.

Completed applications for Music, with supporting documents, must be uploaded by December 15. International students are advised to apply well in advance of the deadline as immigration procedures may be lengthy. Applications received after the prescribed date will not be considered unless exceptional circumstances are argued by the department concerned. Candidates will be notified of acceptance or refusal as quickly as possible.

Admission Requirements

Applicants should be graduates of an accredited university of recognized reputation and hold a Bachelor's degree equivalent to a McGill degree in a subject closely related to the one selected for graduate work. This implies that about one-third of all undergraduate courses should have been devoted to the subject itself and another third to cognate subjects.

The applicant must present evidence of academic achievement: a minimum standing equivalent to a Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) of 3.0 out of a possible 4.0 or a CGPA of 3.2/4.0 for the last two full-time academic years. High grades are expected in courses considered by the department to be preparatory to the graduate program. Please note that we do not require the GRE (Graduate Record Examinations) for admission.

Some departments impose additional requirements and even though the applicant may appear to satisfy the general admission requirements, acceptance into a graduate degree program is not guaranteed by the department or the Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies Office. The final admission decision rests with the Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies Office.

Admission to a Qualifying Program

Some applicants, whose academic degrees and standing entitle them to serious consideration for admission to graduate studies, but who are considered inadequately prepared in the subject selected, may be admitted to a Qualifying Program. The undergraduate-level courses to be taken in a Qualifying Program will be prescribed by the department concerned.

Qualifying students are registered in graduate studies, but not as candidates for a degree. Only one qualifying year (i.e., two full-time terms) is permitted. In cases where a department recommends a change of registration from Qualifying Program (Fall) to Master's Degree First Year (Winter), students must apply to the degree program by October 1 at the latest.

Successful completion of the work of the Qualifying Program does not automatically entitle the student to proceed towards a degree. Qualifying-year students must reapply for admission to the program for which they seek qualification.

Students who are ineligible for a Qualifying Program may apply to the appropriate undergraduate faculty for admission as regular or special students, and seek admission to graduate studies at a later date. The normal admission requirements must be met and the usual procedures followed.

For those students who need more study in order to prepare for the Masters Program in Sound Recording, there are a number of prerequisite courses that can be taken and may be recommended by the department. Applicants must apply through the undergraduate application as a special student. Please consult the sound recording web page for details.

Competency in English

Non-Canadian applicants to graduate studies whose mother tongue is not English and who have not completed an undergraduate degree from a recognized institution where English is the language of instruction must submit documented proof of competency in oral and written English. Before acceptance, appropriate exam results must be submitted directly from the TOEFL or IELTS Office. An institutional version of the TOEFL is not acceptable. Examples of appropriate exam results are: TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) with a minimum score of 550 (or 213 on computer-based test), or IELTS (International English Language Testing Systems) with a minimum overall band of 6.5. Permanent Residents may be required to submit a TOEFL score. Applications will not be considered if a TOEFL or IELTS test result is not available.




All new students who are not citizens or Permanent Residents of Canada are required to obtain the necessary Visa and/or Study Permit and CAQ prior to entering the country. Do not leave home without proper documentation. You cannot change your status from Visitor to Student in Canada.

Quebec Acceptance Certificate for Studies -- The process to come to Canada begins with an application for a Quebec Acceptance Certificate for Studies. There is a $100 processing fee for this document. Details on how and where to apply for the CAQ are provided with the McGill acceptance package.

Study Permit -- Issued by Immigration Canada through a Canadian Embassy or Consulate. (There is a processing fee of $125 on all applications for Study Permits.)

A citizen of the United States, Greenland and/or St. Pierre-Miquelon is permitted to obtain the Study Permit at a Port of Entry, if in possession of the required supporting documents.

Applying to McGill from within Canada (outside Quebec) -- Students transferring from another Canadian institution outside Quebec to McGill should send their documents and CAQ application to the Montreal address of Immigration Quebec.

Students must normalize their status with Quebec and Canada Immigration prior to attending any classes at McGill.

For further information, or if there is an emergency, contact International Student Services at 514-398-4349 during regular office hours, 09:00 to 17:00, or by international [dot] students [at] mcgill [dot] ca (Email).

Compulsory Health Insurance -- By Senate regulation, all students who do not have Canadian citizenship or Permanent Resident status, as well as their accompanying dependants, must participate in a compulsory health insurance plan administered by the University.

When registering by MINERVA, students will be directed to the International Student Services web page for enrolment procedures and schedule.

Please refer to the "Fees" section for information concerning rates.

All inquiries related to this University policy must be directed to:
International Student Services
Brown Student Services Building, Room 3215
3600 McTavish Street
Montreal, Quebec H3A 1Y2
international [dot] health [at] mcgill [dot] ca (Email)




International and Canadian students may be eligible for partial funding to offset tuition fees.



Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies Office
(Fellowships and Awards Section)
James Administration Building, Room 400
845 Sherbrooke Street West
Montreal, Quebec H3A 2T5
Tel.: 514-398-3990
Fax: 514-398-2626
graduate [dot] fellowships [at] mcgill [dot] ca (Email)

The Fellowships and Awards Section of the Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies Office provides information on many sources of support for Canadian and non-Canadian students, both new to McGill and continuing. Further information on these and other sources of funding can be found in the Graduate Fellowships and Awards calendar, and on the Office web site, under Funding: Fellowships and Awards. "Making Ends Meet" is a guide to successful strategies for funding graduate studies.

The Tomlinson Fellowships are awarded to the most outstanding applicants at the following levels: Master's programs in disciplines housed in the Faculty of Science, doctoral programs in any discipline, and postdoctoral research in any discipline. Applications for Tomlinson Postdoctoral Fellowships must reach the proposed academic department by the first Monday in November -- please consult the GPSO web site for application guidelines and forms.

Tomlinson Master's and Doctoral Fellowships, as well as other entrance fellowships, are awarded on the basis of the application for admission, upon nomination by academic departments -- please contact the proposed academic department directly for further information. To be considered for a Tomlinson Master's or Doctoral Fellowship, the application for admission must reach the proposed academic department by the first Monday in January (Music has an earlier deadline of December 15).

The GPSO also administers Major Fellowships for students who are currently enrolled in a McGill graduate program for subsequent years of studies. Competition deadlines are in the early fall prior to the funding period (e.g., Fall 2005 for funding in 2006-07) -- please consult the GPSO web site for application guidelines and forms.

Differential fee waivers for International students provide eligible non-Canadian graduate students with waivers of the international tuition fee supplement. There are no application forms for differential fee waivers, since these are awarded on the basis of departmental nominations made to the Fellowships and Awards Section.

Research Assistantships, Teaching Assistantships and stipends from professors' research grants are handled by individual academic departments at McGill. All assistantship and stipend inquiries should be directed to departments.

Recruitment Fellowship

Normally one (1) recruitment fellowship (valued up to $14,000) is available to students who apply for first admission to PhD- or DMus-level studies at McGill.

McGill Graduate Studies Fellowships

A certain number of fellowship units of $5,000 are awarded by the Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies Office upon nomination by the Schulich School of Music for graduate-level studies. Exceptional students at the graduate level who demonstrate potential may be considered.

Max Stern Fellowship in Music

A limited number of fellowships worth $12,000 (renewable) are awarded by the Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies Office to doctoral level students in Music on the recommendation of the Schulich School of Music. Exceptional students at the Master's level who demonstrate potential for doctoral studies may be considered.

Fee Waivers

A limited number of differential fee waivers are available to allow international students to pay the same tuition fees as Canadian students. Restricted to those who will be registering full time in a Master's or PhD/DMus program. Students who will be in a qualifying year are not eligible.

Schulich School of Music

The Schulich School of Music has a number of scholarships, awards and fellowships available to students entering a graduate program. These awards range in value from $250 to $10,000.

Schulich Scholars

The Schulich School also has a number of prestigious renewable scholarships in the $5,000 to $10,000 CDN/year range for outstanding prospects and/or students in-programs who are designated ”Schulich Scholars.” About 40 such Scholars at both undergraduate and graduate levels are present in the School during any academic year.

NOTE: Application forms are not required for any of the above awards as all students will automatically be considered.

Teaching & Research Assistantships

Teaching assistantships and instructorships in the Department of Music Research are available, with support ranging up to $5,000. A limited number of TA positions are also available in the Department of Performance for D.Mus. Performance students. Additional positions are available for research assistants, computer technicians, sound recording technicians and invigilators.




Citizens and Permanent Residents of Canada
Need-based student financial aid programs are offered by the Federal/provincial governments. Applications should be submitted directly to the province (or territory) of residence. Application forms are available from the governmental authorities as well as the Student Aid Office. Information on governmental student aid and links to sites can be found on McGill's Financial Aid web site.

Citizens and Permanent Residents of the United States
McGill University participates in the Federal Family Education Loan Program (FFELP). American students in need of financial assistance may apply for Stafford loans.

All students applying for loans must file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to determine financial need. This is done on-line at FAFSA. Our school code is C06677. Applicants will need to obtain the necessary PIN number to validate their signature before electronically sending the application to be processed. Follow the steps on the FAFSA website to obtain the PIN.

The report generated from the FAFSA is called a Student Aid Report (SAR). The SAR is not sent to our school as indicated on the FAFSA website. However, if you have designated McGill University as a school you may attend, we will be able to retrieve your SAR.

Stafford Loans
Graduate students and students in professional programs may borrow up to the cost of attendance, to a maximum of $18,500 US. $8500 of this amount may be a subsidized loan.

Information from the SAR and any financial aid received from your department and other sources is used to determine how much of the loan will be subsidized (interest free during full time studies) or unsubsidized (interest is charged during full time studies).

Students who qualify for the subsidized loan will begin repayment of the principal and interest six months after they cease to be enrolled at least half time. Students receiving unsubsidized loan funds may pay the interest charges while they are in school, with principal deferred, until they cease to be enrolled at least half time; or they can choose to have both the interest and principal deferred until after they cease to be enrolled at least half time.

You must report any financial aid you are receiving (including funding from your department) when you apply for Stafford loans.

How to Apply for Stafford Loans
Each year, in addition to filing a FAFSA, a student must sign a Stafford Master Promissory Note (Stafford MPN). The MPN documents a student's choice of guarantor and lender as well as the obligation to repay the loan.

Please note that, at the time of printing, the application process for submission of the Stafford and PLUS (parental loans) MPNs is being revised. New information regarding the use of e-signatures for these documents will be updated on the Student Aid website in early spring. E-sign will be available for students who use the preferred guarantor, American Student Assistance (ASA), and Northwest Education Loan Association (NELA).

Students who are residents of Vermont should apply using Vermont Student Assistance Corporation (VSAC) as a guarantor. Students may order an application package at VSAC. Mail the original MPN to VSAC and the school copy of the MPN to the Student Aid Office. It is not yet possible to apply using e-signatures.

If you require further information, you may contact Marcia Vance at:
Vermont Student Assistance Corporation
One Main Street
PO Box 2000
Winooski, VT 05404-2601
Phone: 1-800-660-3561, ext.273 (toll-free in North America)
1-802-654-3770, ext.273
Fax: 1-802-654-3765
E-mail: vance [at] vsac [dot] org

McGill Financial Aid
The Student Aid Office also administers the University's need-based financial aid program, which includes short-term loans to cover emergency situations, limited bursary assistance and a Work Study program. All applicants for aid must first apply for the maximum government assistance for which they may be eligible.

Applications should be directed to:
Student Aid Office
Brown Student Services Building
3600 McTavish Street
Montreal, Quebec H3A 1Y2
Telephone: 514-398-6013/6014
student [dot] aid [at] mcgill [dot] ca (Email)




For further information refer to the Student Services web site. Unless otherwise noted, these services, offered by the Office of the Dean of Students, are located in the
William and Mary Brown Student Services Building
3600 McTavish Street
Montreal, QC H3A 1Y2

International Student Services

  • offers support to international students with non-academic matters (immigration, health insurance, etc.), runs a Buddy Program to welcome new international students and an orientation program.

Brown Building, Suite 3215
Telephone: 514-398-4349
international [dot] students [at] mcgill [dot] ca (Email)

Office for Students with Disabilities

  • coordinates services to meet the special needs of students with disabilities.

Brown Building, Suite 3100
Tel.: 514-398-6009
TDD: 514-398-8198
disabilities [dot] students [at] mcgill [dot] ca (Email)





The majority of residence accommodation located on the downtown campus is available to undergraduate students only.

A small amount of housing in the form of apartments and shared-facilities houses is available for graduate students. Application forms and detailed information on graduate housing can be obtained from:

McGill Residences and Student Housing

University Hall
3473 University Street
Montreal, Quebec H3A 2A8
housing [dot] residences [at] mcgill [dot] ca (housing.residences@mcgill.c)housing [dot] residences [at] mcgill [dot] ca (a)

Off-Campus Housing

The McGill Off-Campus Housing service publishes on-line lists of apartments for rent, apartments to share, and rooms for rent in private homes throughout Montreal. The lists are updated daily and are available to all students with a valid McGill ID number. The web site also contains information on renting in Montreal and on Quebec lease laws, as well as links to other useful sites.

Phones and computers are available at the Off-Campus Housing Office to assist students in their housing search. The office is located in the
Student Housing Office
3641 University Street
Montreal, QC H3A 2B3
Tel.: 514-398-6010
Fax: 514-398-2305
offcampus [dot] housing [at] mcgill [dot] ca (Email)