Postgraduate study in Music


Students who intend to enrol for our postgraduate degrees must choose their qualifying courses carefully to ensure that the necessary prerequisites have been met. If you are uncertain, discuss your course with the appropriate member of staff or the Head of Department. To get an idea about what postgraduate study at UC School of Music is like, please visit our Postgraduate student profiles

It is possible to apply to study for postgraduate courses (except MMus) on a part-time basis.

Within these degrees a wide spectrum of specialisations in music is possible.

Bachelor of Music with Honours

The one-year MusB (Hons) degree course follows on from the successful completion of a Bachelor of Music degree and may be taken in composition, musicology, ethnomusicology, music education, or performance. Four appropriate courses are chosen from the 15 that are available. It is possible to select courses that will give a more general, non-specialised degree.

Further information on Bachelor of Music with Honours MusB (Hons)

Bachelor of Arts with Honours

This one-year degree course follows the successful completion of a BA or other bachelor's degree. Four courses are selected from courses in musicology, or ethnomusicology, or music education only.

Students intending to enrol for the BA (Hons) degree should choose their Stage 3 options carefully when completing the qualifying undergraduate degree.

Master of Music (MMus)

This one-year course follows MusB (Hons), providing a fifth year of full-time study. The degree is taken in either composition or performance and continues the area of specialisation of the Honours degree.

Students who intend to enrol for the MMus degree should choose their MusB (Hons) courses carefully to ensure that the necessary prerequisites have been met. Consult the University of Canterbury Calendar for details of prerequisites and course content.

Master of Arts (MA)

The MA in music is a one-year degree course, consisting of a thesis based on supervised research, following the completion of a BA (Hons) in music or MusB (Hons) degree.

Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA)

The DMA is a three-year degree course (usually following an Honours or Masters degree), and involves advanced research in music composition or performance. It comprises scholarly research in the form of a supervised research thesis and performance practice in the form of public music performance or the presentation of compositions.

Students make a significant contribution both intellectually and in practice to either the interpretative and/or technical practice of musical performance, or the technical and creative practice of musical composition. The application process normally requires an audition, interview and/or submission of previous academic work and recommendation from the School of Music.

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

The Doctor of Philosophy course follows on from completion of an Honours or Masters degree and is in an approved field of supervised research. The minimum period of enrolment for a full-time candidate is two years.

If you are unsure about how to plan your studies to cater for your background, contact the School of Music.

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