Course information

Department

Music

Length

1 year full-time or 2 years part-time

Scholarship information

Funding available

Course overview

The MA Music (Ethnomusicology) introduces a range of methodologies in relation to the study of music in its cultural contexts.

As well as engaging with musical practices in various geographic or cultural areas, the programme acknowledges the importance of urban ethnomusicology and the usefulness of applying ethnomusicological approaches to Western art and popular music.

You have the opportunity to engage with key ethnographic methodologies, such as interviewing, videoing and video editing, and musical performance as a research technique.

The innovative structure of the programme allows you to specialise in one of these areas if you wish, leading to a final project that itself may have a significant practical component, and you have the opportunity to undertake fieldwork projects as part of your studies.

A written dissertation option is also available, allowing you to engage in depth with an issue that interests you.

The programme appeals to a wide range of students hoping to develop their intellectual skills in music, particularly those with interests in music as a cultural phenomenon.

It's exceptionally useful, for example, for students preparing for further postgraduate research, or for those considering careers in teaching, journalism, arts administration or the culture industries, or working with government agencies or charities abroad.

Contact the department

If you have specific questions about the degree, contact Dr Barley Norton.

What you'll study

Core module

You take the following core module:

Module title Credits
  Contemporary Ethnomusicology 30 credits

Option modules

You choose three modules from a list that currently includes:

Module title Credits
  Advanced Music Studies 30 credits
  Critical Musicology and Popular Music 30 credits
  Ethnographic Film and Music Research 30 credits
  New Directions in Popular Music Research 30 credits
  Performance as Research (Ethnomusicology) 30 credits
  Popular Music and its Critics 30 credits
  Research through Musical Performance 30 credits
  Sound Agendas 30 credits
  Philosophies of Music 30 credits

You can also choose to study a 30 credit module (or equivalent credits) from a list of modules from a different department.

Ethnomusicology Major Project

Module title Credits
  Ethnomusicology Major Project 60 credits

Download the programme specification, for the 2019-20 intake. If you would like an earlier version of the programme specification, please contact the Quality Office.

Please note that due to staff research commitments not all of these modules may be available every year.

Entry requirements

You should have (or expect to be awarded) an undergraduate degree of at least upper second class standard in Music or an equivalent subject. 

Your qualification should comprise a substantial academic element relevant to the selected MA pathway and option choices. For the generic MA Music award you should write a detailed proposal explaining the rationale for your option course choices and how these provide a coherent programme of study leading to dissertation. A detailed transcript of your degree is preferred.

International qualifications

We accept a wide range of international qualifications. Find out more about the qualifications we accept from around the world.

If English isn’t your first language, you will need an IELTS score (or equivalent English language qualification) of 6.5 with a 6.5 in writing and no element lower than 6.0 to study this programme. If you need assistance with your English language, we offer a range of courses that can help prepare you for postgraduate-level study.

Fees, funding & scholarships

Annual tuition fees

These are the fees for students starting their programme in the 2020/21 academic year.

  • Home/EU - full-time: £8040
  • Home/EU - part-time: £4020
  • International - full-time: £17070

If your fees are not listed here, please check our postgraduate fees guidance or contact the Fees Office, who can also advise you about how to pay your fees.

It’s not currently possible for international students to study part-time if you require a Tier 4 student visa, however this is currently being reviewed and will be confirmed in the new year. Please read our visa guidance in the interim for more information. If you think you might be eligible to study part-time while being on another visa type, please contact our Admissions Team for more information.

If you are looking to pay your fees please see our guide to making a payment.

Additional costs

In addition to your tuition fees, you'll be responsible for any additional costs associated with your course, such as buying stationery and paying for photocopying. You can find out more about what you need to budget for on our study costs page.

There may also be specific additional costs associated with your programme. This can include things like paying for field trips or specialist materials for your assignments. Please check the programme specification for more information.

Funding opportunities

Find out more about postgraduate fees and explore funding opportunities. If you're applying for funding, you may be subject to an application deadline.

Scholarships

Home/EU students applying for this programme in 2019/2020 may be eligible for funding under the BAME Music Scholar's Fee Waiver (MA/MMus).

How to apply

You apply directly to Goldsmiths using our online application system. 

Before submitting your application you’ll need to have:

  • Details of your education history, including the dates of all exams/assessments
  • The email address of your referee who we can request a reference from, or alternatively an electronic copy of your academic reference
  • personal statement – this can either be uploaded as a Word Document or PDF, or completed online

          Please see our guidance on writing a postgraduate statement

  • If available, an electronic copy of your educational transcript (this is particularly important if you have studied outside of the UK, but isn’t mandatory)

You'll be able to save your progress at any point and return to your application by logging in using your username/email and password.

When to apply

We accept applications from October for students wanting to start the following September. 

We encourage you to complete your application as early as possible, even if you haven't finished your current programme of study. It's very common to be offered a place that is conditional on you achieving a particular qualification. 

Late applications will only be considered if there are spaces available.

If you're applying for funding, you may be subject to an earlier application deadline.

Selection process

You will normally be required to attend an interview, and you may be asked to submit examples of your written work in advance (such as an essay of at least 1,500 words on a relevant topic).

Find out more about applying.

Staff

Find out more about staff in the Department of Music.

Careers

Skills

You'll develop an awareness of key ethnographic methodologies, investigation and evaluation skills, intellectual skills in music and specific research skills.

Careers

The programme will be exceptionally useful for, for example, students preparing for further postgraduate research, or for those considering careers in teaching, journalism, arts administration or the culture industries, or working with government agencies or charities abroad.

Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths

What our students say

Jaremdi

There is never a dull moment as I am kept busy with the wide range of events and activities offered by the university and different societies/clubs at Goldsmiths.

"I chose Goldsmiths because of its reputation in ethnomusicology. It was highly recommended by my lecturers at the university where I did my undergrad. When I went on the Goldsmiths website and read through the modules being offered on the ethnomusicology pathway, I knew Goldsmiths was where I wanted to go. After taking a year off to do some fieldwork in preparation for my masters, I finally came to London in September and what a journey it has been so far! The past two months have passed by in a whirlwind of activities. There is never a dull moment as I am kept busy with the wide range of events and activities offered by the university and different societies/clubs at Goldsmiths. And, of course, my course keeps me busy with all the reading for lectures and assignments. It challenges me in the best way possible and makes me excited about learning.

Goldsmiths has such a warm sense of community because of which I have had the opportunity to meet people from diverse backgrounds studying really interesting courses and that has been a fascinating learning experience. I am also really enjoying the creative and energetic vibe of London. There is so much to do and see that you get inspired everyday.

After I graduate, I would like to return home to Nagaland and gain employment as a lecturer in ethnomusicology (specialising in Naga music) at one of the music colleges in India. I would like to generate awareness and interest in ethnomusicology among my people so that we can have more Naga researchers in the field. I also hope to publish a book on my research findings on the music of the Nagas at some point in the future. I am confident that my time at Goldsmiths will equip me with the necessary skills to achieve these goals."

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