One way to get a doctorate

Robert Schumann aspired to be awarded a doctorate degree. On January 31 1840, Robert Schumann asked a friend to appeal to the University of Jena to give him an honorary degree, or set him a degree to pass, on the grounds of: “My sphere of action as an editor on a high-class paper, which has now existed for seven years, my position as composer and the fact of my having really worked hard, both as an editor and musicians.”

Schumann began an essay on Shakespeare in relation to music, but without waiting for this, the University of Jena granted him his his Doctorate on 24 February 24, less than a month since his application.

Hughes, Rupert (2004) The Love Affairs of Great Musicians, vol. II. Project Guttenburg. http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/11419. Accessed 13 March 2016.