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Musicology

The training in musicology offered at Université de Montréal places the discipline at the heart of the humanities while taking into account the essential relationships that bind it to other scientific disciplines.

The diversity of the world’s musics is thus explored from a number of different angles, including:

  • Music history
  • Esthetics
  • Ethnomusicology
  • Sociomusicology
  • Music theory and analysis
  • Acoustics
  • Psychology of music
  • Playing an instrument

This multidisciplinary training has the advantage of:

  • Fostering the development of cross-sectoral abilities that prepare students for interdisciplinary exchange
  • Providing the means to connect music to other activities
  • Allowing for reflection on the vocation of musician

Renowned teachers and close supervision

Courses and seminars are given by teachers known internationally by way of their many publications and scientific conferences. The quality of their work is reflected in the annually obtained research grants that foster the creation of dynamic multidisciplinary research teams. In addition to numerous active research projects, the Faculty of Music is also home to the Canada Research Chair in Music and Politics.

Moreover, both faculty members and students also take part in the activities of other Montreal-based interuniversity music research groups as well as international research partnerships.

The supervision provided by teachers is highly personalized in order to meet the needs of students, offering them complete theoretical training in a deeply human framework.

The bachelor’s in musicology: solid preparation for graduate studies

The bachelor’s in musicology allows students to continue their studies either at the graduate level in music (musicology or ethnomusicology option) or in other sectors of learning (law, archival, librarianship, communications, management).

This undergraduate degree is built on a number of obligatory courses that ensure intensive general training, as well as elective courses that enable students to study the subjects of their choosing more deeply and to prepare a more precise orientation with a view to graduate studies.

Certificate, minor and major: studies that make it possible to combine disciplines

Addressing musicological issues, the minor and major programs in music, history and societies, along with the certificate in music and arts, may be completed on their own or be associated with other short programs offered at Université de Montréal. The latter formula may lead to a bachelor’s degree by accumulating certificates.

Graduate studies

At the graduate level, two orientations are possible: musicology or ethnomusicology. General training includes a mandatory research seminar (MUL6216 for the master’s) and a number of thematic seminars (master’s and doctorate).

During their education, students will be able to go deeper into a broad range of themes relative to, among other topics:

  • Historical musicology
  • Music theory and analysis
  • The semiology of music, the philosophy of music and music esthetics
  • Ethnomusicology and sociomusicology
  • Music mediation
  • Film music studies and ludomusicology
  • Cognitive and experimental musicology
  • Psychoacoustics
  • Digital musicology and computer music
  • Music acoustics and organology
  • Analysis of processes in music creation
  • Creative research (performance, improvisation, composition)
  • Any interdisciplinary approach at the intersection of these disciplines and other related disciplines (visual arts, film, literature, political science, sociology, psychology, computing, movement science, etc.)

The general education and the scientific support, as well as the presence of a center of interdisciplinary research integrated into the general training – OICRM – contributes, at all levels of study, to the uniqueness of the training offered at the Faculty of Music.

Different music repertoires can be addressed (Western art and popular music, world music, movie and video game music). Analysis of these artistic objects, of their creation and transmission processes along with the overall ecosystem that carries them, comprise possible research focuses in graduate studies.

The OICRM

At the Faculty of Music, students also benefit from an important research body, the Observatoire interdisciplinaire de création et de recherche en musique (OICRM).  The different specialized laboratories of this interuniversity group offer top-quality research tools, in addition to allowing for integration into the research work that takes place there. These practical activities complement the theoretical training. Research assistantship contracts connected to the different laboratories are available, in relation to the topics dealt with.

Career prospects

Moreover, training in musicology prepares one for a considerable number of opportunities in today’s musical life:

  • Teaching and research
  • Print and broadcast journalism
  • Music programming
  • Musical entertainment:

    • Researcher
    • Media columnist
    • Artistic advisor
    • Head of communications for cultural organizations or record companies
    • Resource person in production organizations

    Program head