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M.Phil. in Music

M.Phil. in Music

The M.Phil. in Music is a 9-month programme which combines structured teaching with supervised study. It is a freestanding programme, but is particularly suitable as a basis for doctoral studies, whether you continue at Cambridge or go elsewhere. From 2018, the course will consist of two separate strands, in Music Studies and Composition. For Music Studies, we welcome applications on any aspect of the academic study of music, and invite potential applicants to consult our Research pages for information about particular areas of specialization.  These include medieval music, the cultural history of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century music, opera studies, music and science, music analysis, performance studies and ethnomusicology. 

The M.Phil. programme is designed to give you:

  • Critical awareness of issues and trends, informed by current research, across a broad spectrum of music studies. Most students take the introductory plenary course entitled ‘Musicology and its Debates’: centred round an extensive set of readings, this will make you aware of current thinking in a wide range of areas from musical historiography, sociology, and reception theory to ethnomusicology, media, and performance studies.
  • The opportunity to acquire or develop research skills and expertise relevant to a specified area of music studies, giving you the chance to acquire the particular knowledge and skills necessary to carry out more advanced work in that area. In certain cases this may include work carried out in another Faculty.
  • Experience in carrying out focused research under close supervision. For those following the Composition route, you will submit a portfolio of compositions. For those following Music Studies, you will have the option of either submitting a dissertation on a topic of your choice, or in certain cases of presenting a recital and an extended essay for the final assessment.  

Composers may choose to offer an extended portfolio of compositions in place of taking ‘Musicology and its Debates’.

As a graduate student you will also participate in skills training courses, weekly colloquia, and other events within the Faculty of Music, and will have access to the outstanding facilities of one of the world’s top research universities. Browse this website to see what is on offer.

Study Music at Cambridge