M.A. course in Musicology

Master’s degrees are postgraduate courses, i.e. they follow a degree that has already been completed. The Master’s degree in Musicology, offered by the Department of Musicology Weimar-Jena, generally follows a Bachelor of Arts degree and culminates in a Master of Arts degree (M.A.). The standard duration is four semesters.

As a research topic at the Department of Musicology Weimar-Jena, music involves engagement with a varied range of topics and methods, which are also reflected in the M.A. course in Musicology. Half of the degree serves to offer deeper knowledge of the core disciplines of Musicology, while the other half enables students to select a study profile, thereby specialising in a particular sub-area within the subject. The offered profiles within the M.A. in Musicology are following below.

The detailed regulations, module catalogues, sample timetables and lecture lists can be found under the corresponding links. If you have any questions, please contact the student counselling service or the student representatives.

Historical Musicology profile

The Historical Musicology profile focuses on the history of music, and music throughout history. In line with this, it looks at sources from music manuscripts through to printed music and ego documents, not forgetting teaching works and musical instruments. That said, it also explores historical sources of all kinds, that help us to understand and illuminate the context of the music in question. Furthermore, empirical approaches, such as developing repertoire and documenting facts, are also included. This is just as much part and parcel of the bundle of methods utilised by a historical musicologist as a form of analysis and theoretical, hermeneutic reflection, or, in other words, the exploration and discussion of genres, styles, eras, historical contexts and the history of the ideas and discourses of the subject itself.

The master’s course offers deeper academic and professional qualifications, both in terms of music history itself and its methodological impact. Similarly, great value is placed on expanding knowledge in terms of repertoire. The primary objective, is to put students in a position where they are able to carry out independent academic work with a knowledge of musicological methods, critically reflecting upon them, applying them and ultimately developing them independently. Similarly, the lectures offer a broad spectrum of the history of music, from antiquity through to the 21st Century, while students are able to develop a personal specialisation as part of their master’s thesis.

The broad range of options for specialisation is supported by the Department's varied research activities. The research colloquia are not merely an opportunity for the students to engage in academic discussions, thereby learning communication skills within the academic system in a targeted fashion. This opportunity also arises at the numerous conferences, research projects and guest lectures at the university, enabling students to pick up a broad range of international content. In turn, this gives them the opportunity to engage in academic discussions, to gain communication skills and to educate themselves further in a targeted manner. Seminar concepts adapted to suit particular professional fields (such as writing workshops or research seminars, including an intensive research course), a degree structure that includes a high proportion of oral work (for communication skills in the field of moderating and tutoring) and the practical, music-related nature of many module areas (such as music notation and interpretation, or performance practice) give students sustainable qualifications for professional fields in which particular specialist skills are indispensable, alongside general skills in the humanities.

Graduates work in the fields of teaching and research at universities, universities of music and independent research institutes, in the areas of publishing, concert and opera dramaturgy, media houses, the diplomatic corps and libraries and archives.

The microsite for the study profile in Historical Musicology can be accessed here.

Transcultural Music Studies profile

Transcultural Music Studies is one of a total of five sub-disciplines in musicology that students can study at the Department of Musicology Weimar-Jena. Furthermore, students of cultural studies or social studies at Friedrich Schiller University Jena can take the TMS profile in the minor subject of musicology and complete a written thesis on it.

The Transcultural Music Studies profile opens up a plethora of scopes, perspectives and specialist cooperation opportunities. TMS focuses on music and transcultural studies which is a specialisation, or profile area with its own methodological focus on the 'culture of music’.

History of Jazz and Popular Music profile

Popular music and jazz are now key musicological research areas that are characterised by an array of interdisciplinary methods. The master’s profile focuses on exploring various genres and styles of popular music and jazz, both past and the present. In this regard, their sounds and the social, ethnic, economic and media-related contexts that relate to their production, dissemination and presentation, are researched. To this end, the master’s profile provides historical and theoretical knowledge, as well as methods of analysing music recordings and performance, source study and empirical research. Possible fields of work include musical publishing, journalism and collaboration on record labels.

Further information can be found on the microsite for the Professorship in the History of Jazz and Popular Music.

History of Jewish Music profile

The History of Jewish Music study profile, within the Master’s course in Musicology, involves an academic exploration of the diversity and plurality of Jewish music, which is principally understood as an expression of Jewish identity. Four fields of Jewish music are in the foreground, each depicted against their historical and cultural background:

  • Jewish music in relation to religion and liturgy
  • Jewish musical traditions in a secular context
  • Elements of Jewish identity in art music
  • Israeli musical culture

More detailed information on the study profile can be found on the microsite for the History of Jewish Music study profile.

The study profile is funded with resources from the Federal Ministry for Education and Research for the Centre for Jewish Studies, Berlin-Brandenburg.

Music Performance profile

  • In addition to the above: completion of a degree in which Music Performance was the supplementary subject, or completion of an audition/qualification exam to determine equivalent artistic abilities

Arts Management profile

  • In addition to the above: completion of a degree in which Intercultural Music and Events Management, or another subject with a similar profile, was the supplementary subject

Admissions requirements

All profiles

  • Degree with professional qualification (Master’s Degree, Diploma, Bachelor’s Degree, or similar, with Musicology as the core or supplementary subject, or with a comparable subject profile) with an overall mark of at least 2.5
  • Knowledge of two foreign languages (Historical Musicology profile: Latin and one other foreign language): five years of lessons without an A-levels examination, three years of lessons with an A-level or B1 level (A2 or B1 for Latin) certificate, in line with the Common European Framework of Reference)
  • For overseas applicants: proof of German proficiency at language level C1 through, for example, the ‘Deutsche Sprachprüfung für den Hochschulzugang’ (DSH), the ‘Test Deutsch als Fremdsprache’ (TestDaF), ‘The European Language Certificates’ (telc) or comparable language examinations, e.g. Goethe certificates. We recommend using a certified language school

Music Performance profile

  • In addition to the above: completion of a degree in which Music Performance was the supplementary subject, or completion of an audition/qualification exam to determine equivalent artistic abilities

Arts Management profile

  • In addition to the above: completion of a degree in which Intercultural Music and Events Management, or another subject with a similar profile, was the supplementary subject

Application process

In the case of the M.A. course in Musicology, the application is made via the UoM’s online portal. After the documents have been received, the departmental bachelor’s examination committee reviews whether the requirements for the degree have been met. If the conditions are met, the applicants receive a decision of acceptance, together with a request to enrol at the UoM. Enrolment is carried out in writing, using the appropriate form, and payment of the current semester fee is a prerequisite thereof.

Please note: your application is only valid once you have successfully completed your application online and sent all your application documents by post. Additional information regarding application deadlines and documents can be found under ‘Application’.