Our Research Master’s in Musicology will train you in advanced research while giving you academic insight into the theoretical and artistic principles underpinning music across history and cultures. You will also investigate the contextual circumstances influencing the production, distribution, and reception of music.


The Musicology program at Utrecht University focuses on Western music from the Middle Ages to the present, the impact of media on the reception and conceptualisation of music, and digital musicology. Interdisciplinary work is central to the program, and there are particularly strong links with Medieval and Renaissance Studies, New Media & Digital Culture, Gender Studies, Postcolonial Studies, Computational Humanities, as well as Game Research, the focus area Cultures, Citizenship and Human Rights, and the strategic theme Institutions. This program aims to innovate, while at the same time retaining its links to the traditional musicological research fostered at the University over the past 85 years. Read more about the teaching and research environment, including our teaching staff.


Our current research focuses on late medieval music from the 13th to the early 15th centuries, Renaissance Franco-Flemish polyphony, music and migration, Baroque opera, Dutch music since the 17th century, music and its epistemologies from the late 18th century to the present, 20th-and 21st-century art and popular music, the complex relationship between music and politics (in particular, during the 19th, 20th and 21st century), the interaction between music and media (in particular, film and digital media, but also the materiality and semiotics of notations), and the impact of digital research tools on musicology. This research is firmly imbedded within the taught components of this program, which are further enhanced by guest lectures and master classes led by international experts.


  • You will possess a thorough knowledge of the field of musicology.
  • You have acquired sophisticated knowledge of a research specialism, either within the field of musicology, and/or an interdisciplinary subject.
  • You are equiped with the academic and professional skills needed to identify, define, analyse, and solve research problems.
  • You have learned to conduct independent research in the field of musicology and to report on this research at an advanced level.

This program will give you the specialist knowledge, insight and skills necessary to pursue further study at PhD level or a career as a researcher. Many alumni pursue academic careersin international musicological research.


Graduates of the program are equipped to operate in the international field of musicology and, in particular, the field of their research specialism. They often continue their studies at doctoral level and subsequently pursue careers in academic teaching and research. Graduates who do not wish to pursue doctoral studies have found employment in museums, libraries, archives, publishing houses, and as teachers or freelance consultants in the cultural sector.


After successfully completing the Research Master's program in Musicology, you will be able to formulate a PhD research proposal on a particular aspect of musicology. You will have a clear idea of the positioning of your own research within the context of international musicological research.

You will also be qualified to compete successfully for admission to a doctoral program in Musicology in Europe, the USA, and elsewhere. Graduates of the program have been successfully admitted, among others, to doctoral programs at the UCLA, Berkeley, University of Toronto, Royal Holloway, University of London, Duke University, Cambridge University, University of Oxford, and, of course, Utrecht University.

Alumni stories

  • Renée Vulto is a PhD student at Ghent University
  • Stefan Udell is a PhD student at the University of Toronto
  • Rutger Helmers is Assistant Professor at the University of Amsterdam.


Below you find some examples of jobs that require an expertise in the field of musicology or other academic skills.

  • Marieke Lefeber is Curator at Museum Speelklok and a Junior Researcher at the Meertens Institute, Royal Dutch Academy of Sciences.
  • One alumna works as a free-lance pianist, musicologist, culture consultant and Head of Research at Delivering Happiness Holland.
  • Another former student works as an ELT Consultant for the Netherlands at Oxford University Press.

Program taught in:
  • English

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Last updated August 23, 2019
This course is Campus based
Start Date
2 years
2,083 EUR
Dutch and other EU/EEA students (statutory fee 2019-2020): € 2,083. Non-EU/EEA students (institutional fee): 2018-19: € 15,575, 2019-20: € 16,600
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