The Master of Music, Instrumental Conducting Specialization offers students the opportunity to conduct a broad range of ensembles in preparation for their career. The art of conducting is examined from the perspective of gesture and movement, score study/analysis/ear training, and rehearsal techniques and strategies. For students focused on band conducting, this is a program of advanced study in repertoire and advanced wind/percussion techniques with a strong supporting program of theoretical and analytical studies. For students focused on orchestral conducting, this is a program of advanced study in repertoire and advanced orchestral techniques with a strong supporting program of theoretical and analytical studies.

Graduate band/wind conducting students are also an integral part of the Athletic Bands Program, assisting with rehearsals and games and learning the administration of an athletic bands program.

Aspirations for Student Achievement

  • Develop the skill, intellect, and musicianship necessary among those who wish to become the next generation of leaders in the conducting field.

  • Develop a method of score study to help in all educational and professional settings.
  • Develop the skills necessary to lead ensembles in their specific discipline (band or orchestra, including theatrical accompaniment) with best-practice rehearsal strategies and methodology.
  • Conduct repertoire in all three disciplines of varying difficulty levels, spanning many genres and time periods.
  • Integrate best-practice rehearsal strategies with sound conducting technique to inform instruction with conducting gestures.
  • Develop the ability to think abstractly, analyze complex ideas or phenomena, synthesize or generalize knowledge across disciplines and sub-disciplines, interpret and apply scholarly findings to specialized topic areas, and communicate ideas effectively in oral and written forms.
  • Develop an awareness of substantive publications in the field of music and conducting.
  • Describe the contemporary role of programming and assessment design in the teaching-learning process.


The conducting degrees accept a limited number of students who pursue a variety of professional goals, including education and directors of choral/instrumental ensembles. Students who are full-time music educators at the middle/high school levels are considered if they have three years prior teaching experience and are presently conducting an ensemble(s). Students who are not public school educators must show a minimum of three years of full-time music/conducting employment and be presently conducting a high school, religious, or community ensemble.

In addition to the admissions processes for the Graduate School and the School of Music, Theatre, and Dance, a personal audition with CSU Music faculty is required for admission into the band or orchestra graduate conducting program.

Effective Spring 2012

Select 10-13 credits from the following: 110-13
Tonal Analytic Techniques
Post-Tonal Analytic Techniques
Symphonic Literature
Music History
Select 9 credits from the following: 19
Junior and Senior High School Music
Advanced Instrumental Conducting and Techniques
Independent Study: Conducting
Group Study: Conducting
MU 630Methods of Music Research3
MU 671Graduate Recital1
Select 0-7 credits from the following: 10-7
Applied Music Instruction: Euphonium
Applied Music Instruction: French Horn
Applied Music Instruction: Trombone
Applied Music Instruction: Trumpet
Applied Music Instruction: Tuba
Applied Music Instruction: Harpsichord
Applied Music Instruction: Organ
Applied Music Instruction: Piano
Applied Music Instruction: Percussion
Applied Music Instruction: Guitar
Applied Music Instruction: Harp
Applied Music Instruction: String Bass
Applied Music Instruction: Viola
Applied Music Instruction: Violin
Applied Music Instruction: Violoncello
Applied Music Instruction: Voice
Applied Music Instruction: Bassoon
Applied Music Instruction: Clarinet
Applied Music Instruction: Flute
Applied Music Instruction: Oboe
Applied Music Instruction: Saxophone (Alto)
MU 696IGroup Study: Performance 10-2
Electives 10-5
Program Total Credits:30

A minimum of 30 credits are required to complete this program. 


Specific courses will be approved by the student’s graduate committee. Students may be required to take additional course work as determined by diagnostic examinations and/or their graduate committee.