Once you have been accepted to Temple and the Boyer College of Music and Dance and paid your tuition deposit, please email the Boyer College to update your contact information. Please include your new Philadelphia address and cell phone number.

Diagnostic Testing

Diagnostic Testing is required for Master of Music and Master of Science students as well as Music Therapy students.

Master of Music and Master of Science

Diagnostic examinations are required for all students entering at the master's level (excluding Music Therapy and Jazz Studies students) in written theory, aural theory, and music history.  The exams may be taken in one day or split over three days, or you could take these exams online for a fee. Preparations are provided upon registration. The exam schedule can be found here.

Registration for Diagnostic Testing for Incoming Master's (Music) Students

  • Keyboard students take an additional two-hour examination in Keyboard Literature.
  • Jazz Studies and Music Therapy students have their examinations arranged within their respective departments.

Please re-read your admission letter, especially the “Special Notes” section on page 2, regarding any entrance deficiencies.  If there are courses you need to complete, they should completed by the end of the first year of study. Begin taking any necessary remedial coursework in the Fall semester. It is best for you to complete your Research in Music course (required for all except Music Therapy and Music Education students) in your first year of study.

*Per the Boyer College Graduate Handbook: “[Master’s] students may not take final qualifying examinations nor perform graduation recitals until all diagnostic examinations have been successfully completed” (9). 

Graduate Diagnostic Examination in Aural Theory

The examination lasts approximately forty minutes and consists of a written portion in which students are asked to:

1. Identify melodic and harmonic intervals.
2. Identify chord quality and inversion of triads and seventh chords.
3. Dictate a chord progression that modulates by writing out the bass line and identifying chords and inversions.
4. Complete a two-part melodic dictation.

Graduate Diagnostic Examination in Harmony

The examination lasts one hour and is in three parts as follows: 

1. Analysis of phrase structure (e.g. parallel period, sentence, etc.).
2. Identification of parts of sonata-allegro form (e.g. transition, development, etc.).
3. Analysis of keys and cadences.
4. Anaylsis of chords (including chromatic chords such as the Neapolitan).
5. Recognition of sequential progressions (e.g. cycle of 5ths).
6. Analysis of motives. 

Graduate Diagnostic Examination in Counterpoint

The examination lasts one hour and is in three parts as follows:

1. Analysis of parts of a fugue (e.g. subject, answer, episode, stretto, etc.).
2. Analysis of keys.
3. Identification of contrapuntal techniques (e.g. augmentation, canon, etc.).

Graduate Diagnostic Examination in Music History

The examination lasts one hour and contains objective questions (multiple choice and/or true/false) covering musical works, composers, forms, styles, terms, and instruments from 1450 to the present. A few sample questions are:

  1. The basso continuo came into use in about which year? 
    (a) 1500 (b) 1600 (c) 1650 (d) 1700
  2. Who composed Das Lied von der Erde (The Song of the Earth)? 
    (a) Mahler (b) Bruckner (c) Brahms (d) Schumann
  3. Which of the following instruments would not be found in the score of a symphony by Haydn? 
    (a) horn (b) oboe (c) timpani (d) trombone (e) trumpet.

Master of Music Therapy Diagnostic Examinations

The audition and additional music requested during the interview serve as the diagnostic examination in voice, piano and guitar that is required of all Music Therapy applicants.  These diagnostic examinations cover two broad areas of competence: the ability to sing and play a large repertoire of songs from the standard, popular, tradition, folk, rock or country literature: and the ability to accompany yourself in a way that demonstrates proficiency on these instruments.  The faculty may select any of the songs on the list.

If a student has not studied piano, guitar and/or voice, or if the student is not prepared to play popular music, she/he may waive any or all portions of the examination and opt to take the appropriate remedial course(s).  This is not unusual.  If the student waives any portion of the examination, please note this on your repertoire list. Depending on each student’s background and competence, as demonstrated during the audition and Skype interview, students may be placed in the following remedial courses:

  • Voice 1211 and/or 2211 (1 credit each)
  • Functional Voice 3631 and 3632 (1 credit each)
  • Guitar 1658 and/or 1659 (1 credit each)
  • Functional Guitar 3635 and/or 3636 (1 credit each)
  • Jazz Piano 2106, 3105 and/or 3106 (1 credit each)
  • Functional Piano 3633 (1 credit)

Note: Credits earned in required remedial courses may not apply toward the master’s degree.

Important: All students must present themselves for the diagnostic examinations at the designated time shown; otherwise, permission to register for the first semester of study will not be granted. Students who wish to waive any portion of the examination by taking the remedial courses are still required to present themselves for the scheduled diagnostic examination, unless they send written notification to the music therapy faculty stating their intent to waive all portions of the examination. When students waive all portions of the examination, they will be required to take all remedial coursework without any further opportunity for taking or retaking the examination. Diagnostics are scheduled prior to the beginning of each semester or in conjunction with the intensive courses. However, advisement and registration take place before or at the beginning of each semester (not during the intensive days). Students will be notified of the dates of diagnostic examinations.