The MMus in Musicology takes a broad and contemporary approach to musical scholarship, and equips students with the context, skills and critical understanding necessary to undertake original research in this dynamic and increasingly interdisciplinary field.
You will be taught by leading academics whose research interests cover a broad range of approaches and genres, including the cultural and material history of music, music and politics, popular music studies, music analysis, music instrument research, music and audiovisual media, music psychology, and jazz studies.
The programme allows you to develop specialised skills in researching and writing about music, and to pursue, in greater depth, an area of special research interest.
The MMus in Musicology provides an excellent foundation for further postgraduate work, and many of our students have gone on to work in academia.
Recent graduates have also established successful careers in performance, journalism, arts administration, music education, and librarianship.
Edinburgh is an extraordinary place to study music. You will join a large postgraduate community and benefit from a vibrant research culture within the Reid School of Music. The university is home to a range of student ensembles and choirs, and located in a capital city with a dynamic cultural scene.
You will be introduced to a wide range of methodologies in musicology and will develop the critical skills needed to pursue your own research.
You will take four compulsory courses...
Introduction to Musicology
Making Sense of Popular Music
Music, Philosophy and Politics
... and will choose a further course from a selection of options across the University.
You will also develop your independent research skills. You will work under the supervision of a member of staff on an individual research project over the first two semesters and write a longer dissertation on a second topic of your choosing at the end of the programme.
Our teaching combines small-group seminars and individual supervision. You will be taught by leading academics with diverse research interests, including fifteenth century English and Scottish music, nineteenth century music theory, music and politics in the Cold War, music and armed conflict, opera, music instrument research, music and film, music cognition, and jazz.
In addition to one of the largest university libraries in the UK, on-campus resources include the musical instrument collection at St Cecilia’s Hall[http://www.stcecilias.ed.ac.uk/] and the School of Scottish Studies archive[https://www.ed.ac.uk/information-services/library-museum-gallery/cultural-heritage-collections/school-scottish-studies-archives]. The National Library of Scotland, one of the UK’s six legal deposit libraries, is just a short walk away.
The weekly Music Research Seminar Series [https://www.ed.ac.uk/edinburgh-college-art/reid-school-music/research-seminars/music], one of a number of research seminars [https://www.ed.ac.uk/edinburgh-college-art/reid-school-music/research-seminars] which we organise, is an integral part of the programme and gives you the opportunity to learn about and discuss the work of local, national and international researchers.
What kind of person studies this programme?
People come from all over the world, and from a range of different backgrounds, to study Musicology in Edinburgh. Most have a first degree in Music, but some have degrees in other subjects. Some are involved in making music as performers, songwriters and composers, but many are not. Their musical interests, too, are varied. What unites our students is a desire to understand more about what music is, how it works, and why it is such a fundamental and significant part of human culture.
Musicology is an academic discipline. While many musicologists are also active as performers and composers, and while we often research what performers and composers do, musicology is about researching music rather than creating it. Performance is not taught on this programme, and while we may discuss issues related to research music pedagogy, this is not an integral focus of this programme.
If you have any questions about the programme, how it suits your needs, and what to consider when applying, please contact the Programme Director.