Canterbury Christ Church University's MMus was always top of the list for me. I can’t praise the flexibility highly enough - such as recording lectures, utilising online tutorials, seminars and materials. It was definitely the right decision for me.

Stuart Slater

How do you want to study?


1 year


TEF Silver


If you want to take your musical knowledge to the highest level then our MMus is the place to start. 

The course will develop your technical, conceptual and critical skills, allowing you to specialise in performance, composition and/or musicology, guided by internationally-renowned staff and supported by stunning facilities. With the MMus under your belt you'll be perfectly placed to pursue PhD study if you wish.

What's more the course is designed to be flexible enough to fit around work or caring commitments, with on-site teaching focused on just one day of the week. 

The curriculum is designed to take your specialisms to an advanced level, including undertaking an extensive independent practical project or dissertation of your choosing, while developing a keen sense of context for those fields.

Entry requirements

A good honours degree (2:2 or higher) in music, or equivalent academic or professional experience. Applicants must be able to show that their background in their chosen independent study is sufficient for development at postgraduate level.

The selection of entrants is normally based on audition or interview in the School of Creative Arts and Industries. Performance audition programmes should be approximately 20 minutes long, and demonstrate the breadth of your command of style and technique. Portfolios of creative or academic work should be of comparable scope and submitted in advance of interview.

If English is not your first language you require an IELTS overall score of 6.0 with no element below 5.5 for most standard undergraduate and postgraduate courses. There are some exceptions and if the IELTS requirement differs it will be specified on the course page.

Honours Degree

Module information

Core/optional modules

How you’ll learn

The programme offers you the opportunity to enhance your musical, compositional, performance, analytical, critical and research skills. In addition, you will apply these skills to your individual areas of interest in specific optional modules in written and practical disciplines.

Within the course, you'll take modules to a total of 180 credits.

You'll choose from one of the following individual study areas (60 credits each):

  • Performance (solo instrumental or vocal performance with a specialism in classical music, jazz, or commercial music
  • Conducting
  • Composition/Creative Audio (e.g., acoustic composition, electroacoustic composition, popular song writing, sound art, music production)
  • Research Project in a chosen area of musicology (e.g., music psychology, music education, music and health, historical musicology, contemporary musicology)

You have four CORE modules to complete (4 x 20 credits):

  • Research Methods
  • Analysis
  • Contextual Studies
  • Criticism

And then you choose one each from the following pairs of OPTIONAL modules (2 x 20 credits):

  • Aesthetics OR Music Psychology, Health and Education
  • Performance Project OR Creative Project

Part­time students will complete two core modules in their first year (Research Methods and Contextual Studies) and two optional modules (one of Aesthetics or Music Psychology, Health and Education and one of Performance Project or Creative project), as well as starting work in your individual study area. Then, in the second year, part­time students will complete the remaining two core modules (Analysis and Criticism) and complete the work for the individual study area.

The Master of Music course aims to produce graduates who are accomplished and confident musicians and/or musicologists, who are able to work at a professional level within their specialist fields of study and who are prepared for further study at PhD level.

The course will develop your technical, conceptual and critical skills which will allow you to engage with music and musicology in a sophisticated and insightful way.

The curriculum is designed to allow you to pursue specialist fields of study to an advanced level, including undertaking an extensive independent practical project or dissertation of your choosing, while developing a keen sense of context for those fields within the broader discipline of music.

Your specialist field of study will be tackled primarily through independent learning, supported by either tutorials or instrumental or conducting lessons as appropriate. Students undertaking independent study in similar disciplines will meet for workshops and seminars during the year as they develop their work.

Supporting this, critical and contextual awareness will be explicitly developed through core modules, which are delivered through seminars that may be student-led. The option modules allow students to explore highly specific areas of music and musicology, through lecture- and seminar-based teaching, and to undertake projects within their own interests through seminars and workshop-based learning.

The music staff comprises resident and visiting specialists who contribute to the MMus through lectures, seminars, workshops and masterclasses. Performance and composition­based subjects are supported by a generous allowance of individual tuition. You'll also participate in a range of public performances and concert activity within the University and beyond.

The lectures usually take place on just one day of the week (normally a Thursday), and so the course is flexible for students wishing to continue working alongside their studies.

The course will develop your technical, conceptual and critical skills, allowing you to specialise in performance, composition and/or musicology, guided by internationally-renowned staff and supported by stunning facilities. Situated halfway between London and mainland France, Canterbury is a UNESCO World Heritage City with a tradition of innovation in music.

James DeanProgramme Director

How you’ll be assessed

You will be assessed through a wide range of assignments throughout the programme. These include musical performance, composition portfolios, written work, research posters, presentations and learning journals, and will be specific to the disciplines and modules that you choose to study.

The independent study modules will be assessed through a major project in each, with performance and conducting assessed through a recital, composition through a portfolio, and research project through a dissertation.

Within core modules, you will undertake coursework assignments that assess skills and techniques that are central to research and professional work in music. There is an element of peer learning and support in Contextual Studies which will provide you with continuous formative feedback, while the preparation of final projects in this module and in the Performance Project and Creative Project options will test your ability to develop and demonstrate an independent approach to critical engagement with a topic. Assessed seminar presentations in Contextual Studies will invite you to realise or speak and write about your work as a composer, performer or researcher.

The range of assessment tasks in the option modules further reflects the range of subjects that you might study and assessment tasks may include learning journals, essays, posters, workshop presentations, compositions and performances.

Continuous Assessment

No exams

Your future career

Graduates of the MMus course typically go on to a range of careers which have included portfolio careers in music, performance and composition, working in a professional studio, music education and music research at PhD level.


Government loans of up to £11,222 are available for some postgraduate Master’s courses for students starting their course from 1 August 2020. Loans are subject to both personal and course eligibility criteria.

The rules around course eligibility mean that in some cases it may depend on how you are studying (full-time or part-time) as to whether you can apply for a postgraduate loan. To check whether your course is eligible, you can email the Student Fees Team or call 01227 923 948.

2021/22 tuition fees for this course

  UK Overseas
Full-time £8,160 £13,000
Part-time £4,080 N/A

20% Alumni Discount

We offer alumni discounts on CCCU Postgraduate Taught, PGCE Primary and Secondary, and Masters by Research courses for eligible students.

Find out if you're eligible for the discount.


Important Information on Tuition Fees

Tuition fees for all courses which last more than one academic year are payable on an annual basis, except where stated.

There will be an annual inflationary increase in tuition fees for this course where the course lasts more than one academic year. For further information read the 2021/22 Tuition fee statements and continuing fee information.

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1 year