Master of Arts or Master of Fine Arts in Musicology

Print of two women standing next to a banner with Latin text on it.

Excerpt from Adrian Willaert. Musica nova.

Courtesy of the Walter F. and Alice Gorham Collection of Early Music Imprints

Our master's degree programs in musicology take an integrated approach to understanding the nature, structural basis and historical development of music. Musicology faculty and students actively participate in the American Musicological Society of New England.

The one-year MA program is for you if you want to engage in beginning graduate study without making a multi-year commitment, or if you're contemplating a career in performance or in a music-related field (such as library science, arts administration, program annotation) and wish to develop some advanced research and writing skills. This program program requires proficiency in German or French. If you are successful in the one-year MA program, you may choose to continue for a second year to complete the MFA.

The two-year MFA program involves further in-depth study. You'll be required to demonstrate a high degree of competence in research writing by writing a master's thesis or submitting two expanded seminar papers. This program requires proficiency in both German and French.

As you design your curriculum, you'll work closely with the musicology graduate program chair in choosing courses appropriate to your specific research interest.

Why Brandeis?

Music thrives here. We have an award-winning faculty comprised of composers, scholars, instrumentalists, vocalists and conductors. Our state-of-the-art facilities include:

We also belong to the Boston-area library consortium, so you can use books in major libraries in the area.

Careers and Alumni

Many of our graduates go on to pursue a doctoral degree in musicology or a related field and are now on the faculty of such prestigious institutions as the Boston Conservatory at Berklee, New England Conservatory of Music, Hartt School of Music and University of Electro-Communications and Musashino Academia Musicae, Tokyo.

Stephen Radcliffe '14 is director of music for the Seattle Youth Symphony Orchestra. Tina Tallon MFA'13 is pursuing a PhD in composition at the University of California, San Diego.


For the one-year MA in musicology, you will:

For the two-year MFA in musicology, you will:

Financial Aid and Scholarships

A partial need-based tuition scholarship is available from the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. Information about this and other sources of funding may be found on the GSAS website. The Department of Music may also recommend additional merit scholarship, determined on a case-by-case basis.