Culminating Experience in Music Business 2


Authored by Robert Lagueux


Course Code: OMBUS-695

Next Term Starts April 8

Graduate-level Course

All Master of Arts in Music Business students complete a culminating experience or thesis project. This experience is meant to be exactly as named: the culmination of your work in the program, the experience through which you synthesize all you have learned. The culminating experience helps to shape your next steps in the profession and in your career. In short, the culminating experience provides an opportunity for you to complete unique and original professional work. Through the culminating experience, you make a creative contribution to and/or define and solve a problem that exists in the profession. This contribution may take the form of a research project, a creative project, a practical project, and/or another project of your devising. Regardless of the form that the project takes—whether creative, research-focused, or practical in nature—the culminating experience represents the highest expression of your learning at the graduate level. 

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This course, a continuation of OMBUS-693: Culminating Experience in Music Business 1, supports the completion of the culminating experience. You will work in consultation with your culminating experience advisor to develop your unique project, and to take you from first draft to finished form. In addition, you’ll prepare for your final presentation and ultimately present your work to your advisor and to the online graduate community. As part of your coursework, you’ll reflect on your project as well as on the knowledge and skills you have attained in the program. You will apply the individual experience, intelligence, organization, creativity, and synthesis of acquired knowledge necessary to complete your unique project. You’ll analyze the ways in which your culminating experience enriches the discipline of study or the profession, and the ways in which you have changed by completing the experience. Likewise, you will determine next steps, if appropriate, to develop the project further. You will also master written and oral communication skills as you present your project to your advisor and to your classmates, and as you prepare your project for submission to the course and to the Berklee archives. 

By the end of the course, you will be able to:

  • Complete your culminating experience project
  • Produce a professional piece of work
  • Prepare for project next steps
  • Synthesize knowledge gained to develop an original contribution
  • Assess your contribution to the profession
  • Analyze your own artistic, professional, and personal growth, as a result of having completed the graduate program
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Overview Syllabus Requirements Instructors Request Info


Lesson 1: Beginning the Final Ascent

  • Charting the Course
  • Maintaining Energy
  • Assignment 1: Create Your Work Plan

Lesson 2: Managing Your Career

  • The Berklee Career Manager [in collaboration with Berklee Career Center]
  • Assignment 2: None Required / Optional: Partial Submission of Culminating Experience

Lesson 3: Presentation Skills

  • A Fate Worse Than Death [in collaboration with Berklee Career Center]
  • Presentation Materials
  • Assignment 3: Peer Review

Lesson 4: Writing Style, Revisited 

  • Always in Style
  • Assignment 4: Culminating Experience Style Revision

Lesson 5: Interviews and Presentations

  • Interviewing [in collaboration with Berklee Career Center] 
  • Presentation Schedule
  • Assignment 5: None Required, Continue Working on Culminating Experience

Lesson 6: The Final Submission

  • Getting It Together
  • Assignment 6: Final Culminating Experience Project

Lesson 7: Final Presentations 

  • Presentations
  • Assignment 7: Student Presentations

Lesson 8: Final Presentations 

  • Presentations
  • Assignment 8: Student Presentations

Lesson 9: Final Presentations 

  • Presentations
  • Assignment 9: Student Presentations

Lesson 10: Looking in the Mirror 

  • Reflecting on What’s Been Accomplished
  • Assignment 10: Final Reflective Essay

Lesson 11: Into the Archives

  • Requirements for Archiving
  • Assignment 11: Archiving Your Culminating Experience

Lesson 12: What’s Next?

  • Congratulations!
  • Options for Next Steps: Applying to Conferences
  • Options for Next Steps: Publishing Your Findings
  • Commencement


Required Textbooks

None: Readings will be provided.

Software Requirements

  • Students intending to do statistical analysis for quantitative projects will need a statistics package of their own choosing.

Mac Users

  • OS X 10.9 Mavericks or higher (click here for system requirements)
  • Latest version of Google Chrome

Windows Users

  • Windows 7 or higher (click here for system requirements)
  • Latest version of Google Chrome

Hardware Requirements

  • A built-in microphone or an external microphone plugged directly into your computer (via built in ports or an external audio interface)
  • 2 GB RAM (4 GB recommended)
  • 500 MB hard drive space
  • Speakers or headphones
  • Webcam
  • Internet connection with at least 4 Mbps download speed ( to verify or download the Speedtest by Ookla app from your mobile app store)



Author & Instructor

Robert Lagueux is Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dean of Graduate Studies, and founding Dean for Faculty Development at Berklee College of Music. He oversees Berklee's graduate-level degree programs as well as the creation of learning and development opportunities for faculty at all of Berklee's campuses, as well as for instructors at Berklee’s international partner schools. He has worked with faculty to enhance teaching and learning at the University of Chicago, Columbia College Chicago, and Northeastern University. As a Fulbright Scholar at City University of Hong Kong, he spent a year developing programs to support general education and leading teaching workshops throughout Southeast Asia.

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Lagueux is a music historian who has published and presented on topics as diverse as Leonard Bernstein and the medieval celebration of Christmas. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Harvard University and an M.Phil. and Ph.D. from Yale University. Read Less


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