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Postgraduate Study

Course closed:

Music is no longer accepting new applications.

Postgraduate research in the Faculty of Music is centred on individual scholarly activity in fields such as historical musicology, analysis, ethnomusicology, performance studies, music and science, and composition. Doctoral students work in close contact with one or more leading researchers in their field as well as participating in programmes of skills training and research colloquia; there are also opportunities to gain experience in teaching. The overwhelming majority of postgraduate students in the Faculty undertake research that is directly connected with the special research interests of members of the Faculty. Intending applicants are strongly advised to make contact with a prospective supervisor prior to making a formal application in order to discuss the feasibility of their proposed research.

The principal educational aim of the PhD programme is to assist each student to acquire the research techniques, skills and knowledge that will enable them to make an original and significant contribution to scholarship, research or artistic practice in the discipline that is the focus of each individual's thesis. Given the focus of the programme on individual research excellence, it is necessarily tailored to the research interests of the student and the expertise of their supervisor.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the programme students should have acquired:

  • knowledge of and expertise in the techniques and methods appropriate to their chosen subject of study;
  • the ability to engage with both teaching and research at the highest level in the contemporary academic environment; and
  • a clear understanding of the scope and applicability of their research in broader contexts.


Students wishing to continue from the MPhil in Music to the PhD in Music must have achieved an overall mark of at least 70 per cent, and a mark of distinction in the most extended, relevant piece of work.

Open Days

The Postgraduate Virtual Open Day usually takes place at the end of October. It’s a great opportunity to ask questions to admissions staff and academics, explore the Colleges virtually, and to find out more about courses, the application process and funding opportunities. Visit the Postgraduate Open Day page for more details.

See further the Postgraduate Admissions Events pages for other events relating to Postgraduate study, including study fairs, visits and international events.


Key Information

3-4 years full-time

4-7 years part-time

Study Mode : Research

Doctor of Philosophy

Faculty of Music

Course - related enquiries

Application - related enquiries

Course on Department Website

Dates and deadlines:

Applications open
Sept. 15, 2022
Application deadline
Oct. 4, 2023
Course Starts
Jan. 5, 2024

Some courses can close early. See the Deadlines page for guidance on when to apply.

Applications open
Sept. 15, 2022
Application deadline
Jan. 16, 2024
Course Starts
April 17, 2024

Some courses can close early. See the Deadlines page for guidance on when to apply.

Applications open
Sept. 4, 2023
Application deadline
May 16, 2024
Course Starts
Oct. 1, 2024

Some courses can close early. See the Deadlines page for guidance on when to apply.

Course Funding Deadline
Jan. 4, 2024
Gates Cambridge US round only
Oct. 11, 2023

These deadlines apply to applications for courses starting in Michaelmas 2024, Lent 2025 and Easter 2025.

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