Music - Traditional Music Studies

This taught, 2-semester online Masters Programme programme is rooted in Irish traditional music while also exploring outwards into the neighbouring traditions which have impacted on Irish music. The programme combines academic research, performance practice and the latest technological methods and explores the musical, social and historical dimensions of the folk music traditions of many areas of Europe including Ireland, Scotland, Brittany and Scandinavia.

Students engage with the discipline of ethnomusicology undertaking courses in traditional music studies, collection and archiving, popular music theory, transmission and technology. The dissertation/research project provides the opportunities for students to develop an in-depth specialised study, which can be academic or performance based. The programme is designed to inform a variety of interests including musicians, teachers, media commentators, producers and promoters.

In addition to the online delivery, students will be on campus at DkIT for approximately one week each semester for face-to-face meetings with other students and staff and onsite delivery of components of the programme. These residential weeks will include generic skills training, performance tutorials, visits and fieldtrips, training in essential music software packages, the development of group-based assignments and recording sessions. These intensive learning contexts will allow the linking of content and learning across modules will encourage group interaction and foster a positive group dynamic that will encourage greater participation in and engagement with blended learning components.

Entry requirements

Second class honours degree in any music genre or a related discipline. Entry is open to applicants from any music genre or relevant music background, and is subject to acceptance at interview. Shortlisting of applicants for interview, based on submitted application form, may take place. All eligible applicants will be interviewed before being considered for admission to the programme.

Other disciplines may also be accepted depending on recognised prior learning.

Applicants who have eligibility criteria based in music performance, production and media will be assessed according to the Institute's Recognised Prior Learning Policy.

Subjects taught

Students will study:

•Irish Traditional music performance style and contexts
•Traditional music collection and archiving
•Scottish music style, forms and repertoire
•Popular music aesthetics and sociology
•English Traditional music and song
•Folk musics of Europe
•Transmission, education and technology

These in addition to a major, researched dissertation/project.

This is a full time course, with part-time options offered through blended delivery mode. The seven academic modules collectively engage with Traditional music forms as artistic, social and professional practices. They involve performance, production and presentation of music, song, dance, each of which is engaged with by participants according to personal strengths. Ongoing assessment is mostly continuous. Final assessment for the MA level involves a major research dissertation or music project which is completed over the summer months; the PGDip is completed in early summer by a minor dissertation or project. The programme has been planned to suit the needs of a range of candidates of varying age, education level and music background. Such might be Traditional Irish music, song or dance performers who wish to gain a more academic knowledge of their subject, or a wider view of traditional musics on these islands and in Europe. It will be of great value to those involved in non-performance aspects of the Traditional-music spectrum who wish to learn more about its history and practice. It is designed also for those who wish to explore Traditional music newly, who will have much to gain by immersion in both its academic analysis and performance.


18 months

Enrolment dates

Contact Dundalk IT for the next course start date.

Post Course Info

Graduates would have eligibility potential for a wide span of Traditional music and Arts related employment niches which require specialist field knowledge and aesthetic judgment and sensitivity to community and cultural values. Such include:

•Production companies
•Arts administration
•Television and radio
•Print media
•Artiste representation and PR
•Music rights
•Music supplies
•Recording studios and video companies
•Archives and local history projects
•Music technology and web

Students can also progress to further studies and undertake research postgraduate studies at MA, MSc and PhD level.

Students can also progress to further studies and undertake research postgraduate studies at MA, MSc and PhD level.

More details
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  • Qualifications

    Degree - Masters (Level 9 NFQ)

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