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We design multilevel coding (MLC) and bit-interleaved coded modulation (BICM) schemes based on low-density parity-check (LDPC) codes. The analysis and optimization of the LDPC component codes for the MLC and BICM schemes are complicated because, in general, the equivalent binary-input component channels are not necessarily symmetric. To overcome this obstacle, we deploy two different approaches: one based on independent and identically distributed (i.i.d.) channel adapters and the other based on coset codes. By incorporating i.i.d. channel adapters, we can force the symmetry of each binary-input component channel. By considering coset codes, we extend the concentration theorem based on previous work by Richardson et al. ( see ibid., vol.47, p.599-618, Feb. 2001) and Kavcˇic´ et al.(see ibid., vol.49, p.1636-52, July 2003) We also discuss the relation between the systems based on the two approaches and show that they indeed have the same expected decoder behavior. Next, we jointly optimize the code rates and degree distribution pairs of the LDPC component codes for the MLC scheme. The optimized irregular LDPC codes at each level of MLC with multistage decoding (MSD) are able to perform well at signal-to-noise ratios (SNR) very close to the capacity of the additive white Gaussian noise (AWGN) channel. We also show that the optimized BICM scheme can approach the parallel independent decoding (PID) capacity as closely as does the MLC/PID scheme. Simulations with very large codeword length verify the accuracy of the analytical results. Finally, we compare the simulated performance of these coded modulation schemes at finite codeword lengths, and consider the results from the perspective of a random coding exponent analysis.