We welcome postgraduate applications from students who have or are about to obtain an MMus in an appropriate subject, but candidates with degrees in other subjects or with relevant publications will be considered. We usually expect students to have achieved at least a 2:1 or equivalent in their first degree.
Overseas applicants should have a degree of equivalent standard and must possess an excellent level of competence in spoken and written English. (Required IELTS scores are 6.5 overall with 7 in writing, and no remaining subscore to be below 5.5 if the applicant requires a student visa.)
Students are initially registered for an MPhil degree and transfer to PhD on satisfactory completion of the ‘upgrade’ process. Full-time PhD students are expected to complete their degree in three years (with a fourth and final year for writing up). These deadlines are enshrined in college regulations and strictly applied; if you are thinking of working part-time while doing your research, you must therefore take this into consideration.
We recommend that you first consult the staff research pages and look through the research profiles of our academic staff involved in supervision. It is worth determining whether your research interests resonate with any of the specific areas of interests outlined and, if so, to emphasise this in your application. The following extremely broad categories might serve as a first pointer to more thematic patterns beneath; it is essential to visit individual staff websites.
· Medieval & renaissance music (Helen Deeming)
· 16th to 18th-century music (Stephen Rose, Henry Stobart, Geoff Baker)
· 19th-century music (Mark Berry, Stephen Downes)
· 20th-century music (Rachel Beckles Willson, Mark Berry, Julie Brown, Stephen Downes, Paul Harper-Scott, Julian Johnson, Erik Levi, Tina K. Ramnarine)
· Theory and analysis (Stephen Downes, Paul Harper-Scott)
· Film and media music (Julie Brown, Anna Morcom, Shzr Ee Tan)
· Ethnomusicology (Geoff Baker [The Americas], Henry Stobart [The Americas], Anna Morcom [India, Tibet], Tina K. Ramnarine [Northern Europe, The Caribbean], Shzr Ee Tan [East Asia, Gender])
· Composition (Mark Bowden, Helen Grime, Brian Lock [electronica, film])
You may consider sending a preliminary research proposal to a potential supervisor ahead of completing your formal application. In addition to this, you may also choose to send a sample of your writing. This will offer you a chance to find out whether your proposed area of research matches the specific expertise and interests of any potential supervisor(s) with whom you might like to work. Alternatively, should you decide to go straight into the formal application procedure, your proposal will be circulated to all potential supervisors for consideration.
Although there is no set model for how to put together your research proposal, the following is a basic outline of what you should probably include:
* Research Aims / Objectives – including Research Questions (3-5 questions)
* Research Context
* Research Methodology (including for Composition)
* Proposed Outcomes (including contribution to knowledge)
* Selected Bibliography
Applications Procedure for PhD in Music
Applications can be made throughout the academic year; studies generally commence in September or sometimes January.
Our standard application procedures involves filling out an on-line application, which you can find on the postgraduate research ‘How to Apply’.
In addition to any documents required by the college, you will need to submit the following directly to the Music Department:
* Any relevant funding application forms, if applying for funding
* Two samples of written work in English, which should take the form of two short academic essays (approx. 5000 words in total) or the equivalent, i.e. your dissertation from Masters programme or peer reviewed journal article
* Research proposal (up to approx. 2000 words)
* If applying for a composition PhD you will need to send in a portfolio of work consisting of scores and recordings
Please send all of these materials to Nanette.Elias@rhul.ac.uk. Our standard application procedure operates on a rolling deadline, with successful candidates starting in either September or January. (If you intend to apply for funding, you need to follow the additional instructions outlined under the 'Funding' tab, and observe the deadline advertised there.)
Please choose your referees with care. If you intend to apply for funding, please inform your referees that they should include an assessment of the viability of your proposed project, and an assessment of the extent to which you are equipped to undertake it. The references submitted as part of your overall PhD application will also be used for the TECHNE scholarships process.
The Next Stages
After your application has been submitted, we will contact you about the status of your application and next phase in the process.
Postgraduate Admissions - PhD
Professor Julian Johnson (firstname.lastname@example.org) +44 1784 443949
Director of Graduate Studies:
Professor Anna Morcom (Anna.Morcom@rhul.ac.uk) +44 1784 414143
Postgraduate Admissions - Masters
Professor Tina K. Ramnarine (Tina.Ramnarine@rhul.ac.uk) +44 1784 443947
Faculty Administrator (All Postgraduate):
Mrs Nanette Elias (Nanette.Elias@rhul.ac.uk) +44 1784 443540
Those intending to study for PhD in the Department are able to apply for funding opportuinties.
In addition to the information below, you should consult the College's general information on postgraduate funding available here.
We would draw your attention to these funding opportunities in particular:
1. AHRC TECHNE Studentships are open to UK and EU applicants (fee waiver at Home/ EU rate, plus stipend if the awardee is a UK student). These are offered through the TECHNE Doctoral Training Partnership which is led by Royal Holloway and includes six other universities in London and the South East. TECHNE offers a rich and diverse training programme for doctoral students with a focus on interdisciplinarity. The training programme is enhanced by input and placement opportunities provided by TECHNE’s 13 partner organisations (including the Barbican, Natural History Museum, Museum of London, BFI and Science Museum) in the cultural sector. If the Music Department agrees that your proposal may be suitable for a TECHNE or College studentship, complete both a regular application form (see previous tab: Applications) and a TECHNE application form. The TECHNE application form and further information on the application procedure for TECHNE funding, as well as other College studentships, is on the TECHNE applications page. Send your completed TECHNE form to Professor Julian Johnson by the Music Department deadline of 22 January 2017.
2. Royal Holloway Funded Scholarships are open to all students. These may include full awards (fee waiver at Home/ EU rate, plus full stipend), but are generally part-awards:either fees (at the Home/EU rate only) plus £5,000 per annum, or a Home/EU fee waiver alone. We will likely have a small number of these to award. However, keep in mind that if you are awarded one of these, you will need to be prepared to part-fund your studies. To apply, complete and submit the TECHNE form by the TECHNE deadline; the two schemes are considered together.
3. Leverhulme (Magna Carta) Doctoral Scholarships fund multi-disciplinary research into the impact of digital technologies on personal liberty, addressing the global challenge of how to balance freedom, privacy and security, embracing the spirit and principles of the original Magna Carta but updated to reflect the very different society in which we now live.These scholarships include UK/EU fees and a stipend of £16,296 p.a. for three years. They are awarded on the basis of outstanding academic achievement and the potential to produce cutting-edge research. Students interested in proposing projects for the 2017/2018 academic year should contact Director of Graduate Studies, Professor Anna Morcom, mentioning their interest in a Leverhulme Magna Carta award.
** The Music Department deadline for applications for TECHNE funding and all other College studentships is 22 January 2017.**
1. Before applying for TECHNE funding you should already have applied to the college for a place to undertake your PhD. (See Applications tab)
2. As a guide, students awarded a full scholarship will normally have a first class Bachelor’s degree and a (predicted) distinction for their Master’s degree.
NB: Applicants NOT wishing to be considered for funding will need to complete a Research Proposal, then follow our standard application procedure by filling out an on-line application on the postgraduate research ‘How to Apply’ page (see Applications tab). Our standard application procedure operates on a rolling deadline, with successful candidates starting in either September or January.
Please direct any further enquiries about Postgraduate Research in the Department of Music to Nanette Elias (Postgraduate Administrator), or Professor Julian Johnson (Postgraduate Research Admissions).
The college offers a full platform of generic skills training through the Postgraduate Research Student pages. There is also a full Practice-Based PhD Programme run by the Faculty.
The Music Department runs a series of sessions throughout the year to provide foundational music research skills: the first is a 2-hour seminar on research bibliography and resources. Relevant training sessions run by other departments and institutions such as the Institute of Musical Research (IMR) will be advertised.
Advice and pastoral support is initially by your supervisor (advice on the content and direction of your PhD), your advisor or Director of Graduate Studies (pastoral matters), or the departmental administrator (administrative queries), and also by various facilities in the college.
See also our page with Information for Current Students in Postgraduate Research for full information on training and support provided.