University of Sussex

University of Sussex

Music

Our PhD courses provide you with the support and resources necessary to complete an original and substantial piece of research. The main fields in which research supervision is available are composition, musicology and music theatre. It is also possible to study for an MPhil. We offer a PhD in Music, assessed by a written thesis of 80,000 words, and an MPhil in Music, assessed by a written thesis of 40,000 words. For the PhD in Musical Composition, your final portfolio of compositions contains at least one, typically large-scale, work with the overall portfolio comprising at least 30 minutes' duration. Equivalent-scale musical works, involving sonic and audiovisual work for digital media, are welcomed. A discursive and written critical component of between 20,000 and 40,000 words is also required. For the MPhil in Musical Composition, your final portfolio of compositions contains at least one, typically large-scale, work with the overall portfolio comprising at least 15 minutes' duration. A discursive and written critical component of between 8,000 and 10,000 words is also required. You normally have two supervisors; they offer complementary perspectives on your work, perhaps reflecting a theory and practice balance, crucial for your development as a researcher. They help you devise a detailed programme of study tailored to the individual research project and offer regular guidance and feedback until completion. All new research students are required to participate in a programme of research training and to take other postgraduate modules that may be recommended by their supervisors. The first term (or first two terms for part-time students) is devoted to developing the research plan. By the end of the first year (or second year for part-time students), you have completed and presented a draft chapter or report. Composition students would typically aim to produce a substantial composition work and related critical or theoretical writing within the same timescale. In the second year, a further sample of work is read by a thesis panel in order to assess progress and give you a small-scale mock viva experience. You are then ready to bring your project to fruition by the end of your final year.

Entry requirements

Normally a Masters degree or equivalent professional experience in a subject related to your chosen area of research.

Course modules

Modules: recent and current phd projects; musical alterity and embodied practice; sonification of the body; sound scores for early avant-garde film; temporality in post-tonal music; the representation of animals in music theatre; the impact of stravinsky's ballets on conducting techniques in the 20th century.

Assessment methods

A discursive and critical written component of between 20,000 and 40,000 words (or between 10,000 and 20,000 words for the MPhil) is also required.

Qualifications

Qualification Study mode Start month Fee Course duration
PhD Full-time GBP 4,052 per Year 1 (England) 3 years
PhD Full-time GBP 14,450 per Year 1 (International) 3 years
PhD Full-time GBP 4,052 per Year 1 (Northern Ireland) 3 years
PhD Full-time GBP 4,052 per Year 1 (Scotland) 3 years
PhD Full-time GBP 4,052 per Year 1 (Wales) 3 years
MPhil Full-time GBP 14,450 per Year 1 (International) 2 years
MPhil Full-time GBP 4,052 per Year 1 (Northern Ireland) 2 years
MPhil Full-time GBP 4,052 per Year 1 (Scotland) 2 years
MPhil Full-time GBP 4,052 per Year 1 (Wales) 2 years
MPhil Full-time GBP 4,052 per Year 1 (England) 2 years

Campus details

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Key information

Contact: 
Student Recruitment Services
Telephone number: 
01273 873525