Entry requirements

Entry requirements - A first or upper second class Honours degree, or equivalent in a relevant related subject area, such as Music, is required.

Applicants whose first language is not English are expected to have reached a minimum IELTS score of 6.5 (with no subscore less than 5.5).

Application process – You should complete the University’s online application form and upload your supporting documents (two references (preferably academic) and copies of academic transcripts).

Please supply a personal statement which demonstrates your interest in the programme and your background in the field of study.

You should name the pathway you are interested in applying to in your personal statement and also provide the below supporting materials:


You will need to provide a link to an online audition showing a video performance of two contrasting pieces of music. Face and hands should be visible at all times to show technique. The video recording must not be edited. Your personal statement will need to discuss and evidence your knowledge of performance, style, and technique.


Experienced composers with relevant qualifications will be considered for the composition specialism. Please supply a personal statement which addresses your style and rationale for your compositions, looking at techniques, imagination and confidence in approach. You will also need to provide three notated scores in either Sibelius, Finale or PDF. Audio links of these pieces would also be helpful but you will not be penalised if these cannot be provided

Music Studies

We welcome applications from students with backgrounds in music and cognate areas e.g. anthropology, history, politics, cultural studies, philosophy, film and media studies. As well as a personal statement, you will be asked to provide an essay which is the best example of your undergraduate work (in English or Welsh). The essay should be of 1,500-2,000 words about a specific topic (e.g., a composer, piece, musical practice) which demonstrates a knowledge of leading scholars, contemporary theories and relevant literature in the field. The essay should include citations and a comprehensive bibliography. Please note that applicants are advised that unless discussing ethnography, narratives about musical experience should be in the personal statement rather than essay sample.

Months of entry


Course content

This MA is an opportunity to challenge yourself academically and musically, while developing a specialism in a research-led university environment. We place an emphasis on flexibility and student choice and have designed a programme that allows you to personalise your course of study.

A significant proportion of module choices will be determined by your abilities and interests so that you can tailor your programme of study to best meet your career goals and ambitions.

This programme is ideal for performers, composers and music scholars with an interest in developing their area of expertise, learning valuable skills, and exploring a relevant course of study.

Areas of Study

You will have the opportunity to follow one of three pathways: Performance, Composition and Music Studies.


This pathway is designed for performers who are committed to improving their skills as instrumentalists and/or singers, both as soloists and in ensembles.


This pathway will equip composers with the techniques and practical experience to pursue their own creative goals to a professional level with confidence and imagination.

Music Studies:

This pathway is designed to allow students to develop a solid basis in research techniques and methods in the fields of Historical Musicology, Music Analysis, Popular Music, and Ethnomusicology, whilst exploring different music styles and traditions in their historical, analytical, and theoretical perspectives.

You will have the option to specialise in one of three main areas:

  • Performance
  • Composition
  • Music Studies.

You will be taught by staff who are internationally-recognised experts in these subject areas.

Our reputation for international research was recognised in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework, the UK government’s assessment of research across all higher education institutions, where we are ranked 8th in the UK amongst music departments for research excellence and 2nd for the quality of our research environment.

Information for international students

Applicants whose first language is not English are expected to have reached a minimum IELTS score of 6.5 (with no subscore less than 5.5).

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MA
    part time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Postgraduate Enquiries
+44 (0)29 2087 0084