Anna Gawboy, area head

Faculty list

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The program in Music Theory at Ohio State provides students with skills and knowledge for all careers in music. The innovative undergraduate curriculum comprises the core courses in theory and aural training, fostering strong musicianship through creative exercises in improvisation and composition. Upper-level courses, also taken by MA/MM students, include counterpoint and theory, and analysis classes in music of four historical periods, and offerings in music technology.

Graduate study in music theory is led by a distinguished faculty whose mission is to guide scholars on paths to professional careers, typically but not exclusively in academia. Recent graduates are teaching at colleges and universities, and several others have chosen to take positions in the information economy. Ohio State is renowned for its programs in Music Cognition and Computational Musicology with a wealth of research produced by graduate students and faculty in the Music Cognition Laboratory. Other areas of faculty and graduate research include Sound, Music, Media and Movement and Mathematical Music Theory. All graduate students are encouraged to develop a broad background in the discipline of music theory, which includes studies of analytical methodologies and in history of theory.
Graduate students develop a broad range of teaching strategies for the undergraduate music theory classroom through their appointments as teaching associates, and some complete the Graduate Interdisciplinary Specialization in College and University Teaching.
In the area of music technology, students are encouraged to take advantage of multi-disciplinary collaborations within the university and the College of Arts and Sciences, especially through the internationally acclaimed Advanced Computing Center for the Arts and Design.   
The program is enriched by guest speakers on the William Poland Lecture series.


Theory Assessments and Diagnostic Exams

Prospective undergraduate students, consult Theory Skills Assessments, as they relate to Undergraduate Admissions.
If you are an admitted graduate student, please consult Graduate Entrance Assessment for information.

Want to learn more?

Future undergraduate and graduate students, explore our degree programs, application and audition details and more, in the navigation menu.

High school students, learn about outreach programs, admissions visit days, request an appointment with our admissions coordinator, and more at Undergraduate Admissions.


  • Future undergraduate students — contact Tanya Sparks, admissions coordinator, at
  • Future graduate students — contact Graduate Studies at