Music - Ethnomusicology

University College Cork

Music - Ethnomusicology

Ethnomusicologists give a special place to learning via the formation of relationships with members of musical communities and to learning via their own personal involvement in music-making itself. This experience, often both humbling and insightful, informs us as we build understandings, interpretations, and analyses upon those of the people with whom we live and study. In projects referred to as applied ethnomusicology, we also contribute as advocates or supporters, using our expertise to transform society in positive directions.

Our innovative one-year taught MA in Ethnomusicology offers a fresh and dynamic approach to the study of music at the postgraduate level in Ireland. The programme combines scholarship and performance in the study of a diverse range of music traditions from around the world.

Coursework includes a personalised research training preparation, musical performance, history and theory of ethnomusicology, multi-disciplinarily, performance studies, and ethnographic field research. MAs are completed by a research project, selected by the student, which ranges from ethnographic dissertations to major performance and from filmmaking to the creation of world music materials for the classroom.

Postgraduate Diploma in Ethnomusicology (NFQ Level 9, Major Award)

Candidates who pass at least 60 credits of taught modules may elect to exit the programme and be awarded a postgraduate Diploma in Ethnomusicology.

Subjects taught

The MA consists of 90 credits as follows:

Part I (60 credits)

MU6050 Performance Studies (10 credits)

MU6004 Performance Practice (15 credits)

MU6030 Research Skills (5 credits)

MU6034 Multidisciplinary Debates in Musicology and Ethnomusicology (5 credits)

MU6042 Ethnography of Music (10 credits)

MU6043 History and Theory of Ethnomusicology (10 credits)

MU6047 Music Cognition and Perception in Culture (5 credits)

Part II

MU6006 Research Project (30 credits)

Entry requirements

You will have a Second Class Honours Grade II in a primary honours Arts degree (NFQ, Level 8), or equivalent, in music or a related subject (e.g. anthropology, folklore, cultural studies). Applicants with an appropriate professional equivalent (e.g. professional musicians of high standing, music media professionals) will also be considered under Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL). All applicants will be required to attend an interview with members of the programme team and may be required to pass a qualifying test.

Application dates

Closing Date

Rolling deadline. Open until all places have been filled. Early application is advised.

Assessment Info

All assessment is based on continuous assessment methods. You are assessed on coursework submitted, including essays/papers, presentations, music performances, and on attendance and contribution to class.


1 year full-time, 2 years part-time.

Enrolment dates

Start Date: 9th September 2024

Post Course Info

Skills and Careers Information

Our MA Ethnomusicology graduates go on to pursue a wide range of careers in the creative arts, culture industries and media. Many have applied successfully for PhDs in Ireland or overseas. Our graduates include professional musicians, academics, teachers, arts managers and staff in NGOs.

More details
  • Qualification letters


  • Qualifications

    Degree - Masters (Level 9 NFQ)

  • Attendance type

    Full time,Part time,Daytime

  • Apply to

    Course provider