Research course

Music

Institution
University of Bristol · Department of Music
Qualifications
PhDMMus by researchMPhil

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Entry requirements

MPhil: An upper second-class degree or international equivalent. Please note, acceptance will also depend on evidence of your readiness to pursue a research degree.

MMus (Composition): An upper second-class degree or international equivalent, plus a portfolio of representative compositions. Please note, acceptance will also depend on evidence of a suitable level of professional accomplishment.

PhD: A master's qualification, or be working towards a master's qualification, or international equivalent. Applicants without a master's qualification may be considered on an exceptional basis provided they hold a first-class undergraduate degree (or international equivalent). Applicants with a non-traditional background may be considered provided they can demonstrate substantial equivalent and relevant experience that has prepared them to undertake their proposed course of study.

PhD (Composition): A master's qualification, or be working towards a master's qualification, or international equivalent. Applicants without a master's qualification may be considered on an exceptional basis provided they hold a first-class undergraduate degree (or international equivalent) and/or can demonstrate evidence of a sustained and high level of professional accomplishment. Applicants with a non-traditional background may be considered provided they can demonstrate substantial equivalent and relevant experience that has prepared them to undertake their proposed course of study. In all cases, applications must be supported by a portfolio of representative compositions. Please note: applicants may be registered on the MPhil or the MMus degree in the first instance.

Months of entry

January, September

Course content

MPhil: a standalone, one-year (full-time) research degree. Students will undertake their own research project, concluding in the submission of a 25,000 word dissertation or a portfolio of 25–35 minutes of music and an analytical/contextual commentary (c.4,000–5,000 words). Students may have the option to audit units from our taught master's programmes if they are relevant to their research.

MMus: a standalone, two-year (full-time) research degree. Students will undertake their own research project, concluding in the submission of a 25,000 word dissertation or a portfolio of 50–70 minutes of music and an analytical/contextual commentary (c.8,000–10,000 words). Students may have the option to audit units from our taught master's programmes if they are relevant to their research.

PhD: a research project undertaken across three years (full-time, plus a writing up period), culminating in an 80,000 word thesis or a portfolio of 75–120 minutes of music and an analytical/contextual commentary (c. 15,000 words). As well as having the option to audit taught units, there may be the potential for PhD students to teach units themselves from their second year of study onwards.

Expertise: the Department of Music is a centre of research excellence in both composition and musicology.

In composition, there is no particular house style, but we are well known for a number of areas, including:

acoustic music, ranging from solo to symphonic scale;

electro-acoustic, including acousmatic composition, live electronics, and mixed forms with instrument/voice;

composition exploring the interface of Western and non-Western traditions.

The department also provides access to a wide network of opportunities for professional and amateur performance.

In musicology, research strengths include not only the Western art music tradition, but also screen media, non-Western and popular music. We have particular depth of expertise in the early Middle Ages (especially Spain), and in the 19th and 20th centuries (including the music of France, Britain, Germany and Soviet Russia). We also have expertise in Anglophone vernacular traditions, including jazz and hip hop; in opera, film, music and the history and philosophy of technology, music and migration; and cultural and reception history more generally.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • PhD
    part time
    72 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    full time
    36 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
  • MMus by research
    part time
    48 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    full time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
  • MPhil
    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

Name
Postgraduate Admissions Team
Email
artf-pgadmissions@bristol.ac.uk
Phone
+44 (0) 117 428 2296