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  1. Postgraduate
    1. 2021
Study at City

MA Music by Research

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Entry Year:
Join one of the UK’s leading universities for an innovative course embracing music and sound in all its plurality, combining world-leading research, exceptional teaching and a vibrant musical community in the heart of global London.

Key information

Start date

Sept 2021

Academic year dates

Duration

This course is subject to approval and offers cannot yet be made.

Full time: 1 year

Part time: 2 years

UK

Full-time: £4,900

Part-time: £2,450

EU

TBC

Non-EU

Full-time: £12,900

Part-time: £6,450

Campus

Northampton Square

Who is it for?

The programme provides ideal training for those wishing to enter the professional music world and/or proceed to a research degree. We welcome students from all over the world and from a range of backgrounds.

Objectives

The MA by Research develops skills within the broad fields of music, including contemporary composition and sound practices (notated and digital music, sound arts, and interdisciplinary practices), performance (classical, jazz, improvisation, popular, and other musical traditions), and scholarship (historical musicology, ethnomusicology, music analysis, and sound studies). This unique course embraces music and sound in all its plurality and cuts across key topics and issues in order to bridge increasingly overlapping sub-disciplines.

Engagement with professional practice lies at the core of the course taught by world-leading artists and scholars who are active creators and researchers. You will collaborate with international visitors in workshops and masterclasses and have the opportunity to present your work and research to the public in our annual City Summer Sounds Festival and Postgraduate Research Conference. The course complements our research centre SPARC (Sound Practice And Research @ City), which hosts an annual interdisciplinary symposium and our groundbreaking record label multi.modal distributed by NMC Recordings.

We have an outstanding reputation for dynamic, inspiring and rigorous postgraduate education and we offer exceptional support to our students who benefit from our location in the heart of London, one of the world’s great cultural hubs.

Requirements and how to apply

Entry requirements

Applicant should hold (or expect to gain) an honours degree (2:1) from a UK university, or an equivalent qualification, accompanied by a creative or scholarly portfolio. We consider applicants with an honours degree in Music, or related subjects in the arts, humanities and social sciences if they can demonstrate musical expertise and experience.

English requirements

If your first language is not English, you will need to achieve one of the following English language test scores:

  • IELTS: An overall IELTS score of 6.0 with no component score below 5.5
  • Cambridge Proficiency grade C or above Evidence that the medium of instruction for your first degree was in English.

Your English test should have been taken in the last two years.

INTO English language programmes

If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this course, our partner, INTO City, University of London, offers a range of English language courses.

These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for entry to this degree. Please follow the links below for more information:

Visa requirements

International Students (EEA and Non EEA) coming to study in the UK, may need to apply for a visa or entry clearance to come to the UK to study. The way that you apply may vary depending on the length of your course. There are different rules for:

  • EEA nationals joining the programme in 2020 and EEA nationals joining from January 2021
  • Students on courses of more than six months
  • Students on courses of less than six months
  • Students on a pre-sessional English language course.

For more information see our main Visa page.

How to apply

This course is subject to approval.

Applications for 2021 entry are now open:

Apply online: MA Music by Research 2021 (full time)

Apply online: MA Music by Research 2021 (part time)

The MA by Research in Music attracts a high number and standard of applications. To make sure you have the best opportunity of gaining a place, please apply as early as possible.

Each application is carefully assessed against the entry requirements so it is important that you include all the required information with your application (for example, degree certificates, certificates of language proficiency levels etc). The processing of your application may be delayed if you do not include these documents.

When applications are open you will be expected to submit the following:
1. A personal statement and topic proposal (ca. 1,000 words). Use this opportunity to demonstrate clearly why you wish to undertake the MA, how this relates to your future career plans, and what research or creative topic you wish to pursue for your MA Major Project,
2. A transcript of your undergraduate degree.
3. An essay (2,000-3,000 words) on a musical or related topic. The essay should demonstrate critical skills and writing ability, and conform to standard academic guidelines for formatting and referencing. Most applicants submit an essay completed as part of their undergraduate studies.
4. Depending on your proposed topic, a second writing sample OR an electronic portfolio of creative work (no more than three examples of your best and most representative work), with brief commentaries on each example. Please include with your application a list of non-expiring links to recordings, scores, videos, multimedia work, or software.

If you wish to send files or hard copies, please email music@city.ac.uk

Research-intensive
88% of our research was described as either world- leading or internationally excellent
(REF 2014).
Seven
acoustically treated studios include a main recording studio and live room and 8.1 and 5.1 surround studios, all featuring Genelec monitors.
Central London location
We are within walking distance of many internationally important art and culture venues.
During your course

More about fees

Fees in each subsequent year of study (where applicable) will be subject to an annual increase of 2%. We will confirm any change to the annual tuition fee to you in writing prior to you commencing each subsequent year of study (where applicable).

Funding

Explore up-to-date information about funding options, available financial support and typical living costs.

Graduate Loyalty Discount

The School of Arts & Social Sciences offer a 10% discount on tuition fees for all City graduates.

Academic facilities

Department facilities include advanced recording and composition studios, a professional performance space, computer laboratories, rehearsal rooms, practice rooms and world music instruments.

Seven acoustically treated studios include a main recording studio and live room and 8.1 and 5.1 surround studios, all featuring Genelec monitors. All studios are equipped for sound editing, processing and mixing with Neve and SSL mixers, a wide array of outboard effects, reference microphones, and industry standard software including Pro Tools, Logic Pro, Ableton Live, Max, Native Instruments Komplete, Altiverb, and Ircam Forum.

Accommodation

We offer a variety of accommodation options and support services for postgraduate students.

Read more about our postgraduate halls.

Our Accommodation Service can also help you find private accommodation.

Find out more about private accommodation.

Learn a language for free

We offer a free language course for City, University of London students.

Find out how to apply

Timetables

Course timetables are normally available from July and can be accessed from our timetabling pages. These pages also provide timetables for the current academic year, though this information should be viewed as indicative and details may vary from year to year.

View academic timetables

Please note that all academic timetables are subject to change.

Student support

We offer an extensive support network during your time here at City, University of London – from Learning Support (including disability support) and counselling to financial and career advice – leaving you free to enjoy every opportunity campus life has to offer.

Find out more about the different types of student support available.

Ask a student

Chat to our current students and read their blogs to gain an insight into studying at City and learn more about our undergraduate and postgraduate courses.

Course content and assessment

To make sure that you can begin or continue your studies with us during the COVID-19 pandemic, we have reviewed and adapted our courses to ensure a safe learning environment for our students and staff. We have modified the way some of our courses are delivered, with many programmes being made available online.

Contact us to find out more about how our programmes will be delivered.

Teaching and learning

Teaching delivery is through a combination of lectures, group seminars, interactive sessions, practical workshops, one-to-one tutorials and a high level of individual learning. Qualified performance students also have the opportunity to receive one-to-one instrumental or vocal tuition from leading professional performers.

MA students have opportunities to participate the Department of Music concert series, our annual City Summer Sounds Festival, our Postgraduate Research Conference, and our research centre SPARC (Sound Practice And Research @ City). You are welcome to join the Music Department’s many performance ensembles and are also eligible to audition for the University of London Symphony Orchestra.

Assessment

We use a range of assessment methods, including projects, portfolio submissions and extended creative tasks and accompanying commentary.

Modules

On City's MA by Research in Music, you will take a 30-credits core module in which you will enhance your understanding and engage critically with current issues in music research and creative practice. You will then submit a 150-credit Major Project, which allows you to develop your research or creative practice in a variety of ways based on a topic you refine and pursue in consultation with your Major Project supervisor.

Core modules

  • Contexts of Music and Sound Practice (30 credits, terms 1-2)
  • MA Major Project (150 credits, terms 1-3)

The programme specification contains more information on how the course is organised, the requirements for progression for each part and credits required for awards.

After you graduate

Career prospects

Our MA programmes have excellent employment statistics. Students have gone on to teach, compose and perform in a wide variety of settings, and are also employed in areas such as music publishing, broadcasting, music management, arts administration and further musical study at MPhil or PhD level.

100% of our graduates are in employment or further study 6 months after graduation, and our alumni include film sound designer Chris Reading and Nico Casal, composer for the winner of the Best Short Film at the 2016 Oscars.


This course is subject to approval.

Applications for 2021 entry are now open:

Apply online: MA Music by Research 2021 (full time)

Apply online: MA Music by Research 2021 (part time)

The MA by Research in Music attracts a high number and standard of applications. To make sure you have the best opportunity of gaining a place, please apply as early as possible.

Each application is carefully assessed against the entry requirements so it is important that you include all the required information with your application (for example, degree certificates, certificates of language proficiency levels etc). The processing of your application may be delayed if you do not include these documents.

When applications are open you will be expected to submit the following:
1. A personal statement and topic proposal (ca. 1,000 words). Use this opportunity to demonstrate clearly why you wish to undertake the MA, how this relates to your future career plans, and what research or creative topic you wish to pursue for your MA Major Project,
2. A transcript of your undergraduate degree.
3. An essay (2,000-3,000 words) on a musical or related topic. The essay should demonstrate critical skills and writing ability, and conform to standard academic guidelines for formatting and referencing. Most applicants submit an essay completed as part of their undergraduate studies.
4. Depending on your proposed topic, a second writing sample OR an electronic portfolio of creative work (no more than three examples of your best and most representative work), with brief commentaries on each example. Please include with your application a list of non-expiring links to recordings, scores, videos, multimedia work, or software.

If you wish to send files or hard copies, please email music@city.ac.uk

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