If you are a musicologist, singer, organist or liturgist with a keen interest in English Church music, this pathway of our MA Music could be for you.
You'll explore in detail the music created and shared in English churches, from the late Medieval period to the present day.
Through weekly seminars, you'll gain a comprehensive overview of English church music. You'll be able to specialise in topics that interest you, such as defined historical or liturgical topics, manuscript studies or editing projects. You'll be part of a small group, meaning we're able to tailor what we teach to the specific interests of you and your classmates.
We encourage you to get involved in the lively community of our department, from participating in department ensembles to attending our weekly research seminars.
Working as a performing musician within a liturgical context, I frequently draw directly upon my research into cathedral music of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. More broadly, I would like to think that principles of intellectual curiosity encouraged during my time at York inform all aspects of my work as a musician.David, MA Music (English Church Music pathway)
Assistant Organist and Director of the Girls' Choir at Canterbury Cathedral
If you're interested in the composition of church music, you'll have the opportunity to work with Dr Richard Shephard, internationally renowned for composing church music.
You'll have access to a wide range of early instruments, as well as practice rooms, recording studios and two professional concert halls.
From choral to orchestral, jazz and folk to improvised electronica, gospel to gamelan, almost every kind of music is performed by the Department’s many ensembles.
All pathways for the MA Music follow the same structure. We place an emphasis on independence and creativity - you will have the freedom to study the areas that interest you.
Over the year, you’ll take four modules:
In addition to these modules, we strongly encourage you to participate in department ensembles and attend weekly research seminars, performance classes and composition seminars relevant to your studies.
As part of these modules, you’ll attend a weekly seminar related to the English Church Music pathway.
Topics covered during the first module ('In Quires and Places where they Sing': the 18th to 21st centuries) may include:
Topics covered during the second module ('In Quires and Places where they Sing': the 16th and 17th centuries) may include:
At the end of each module, you’ll produce a ‘guided submission’ - either a 5,000 word essay or a composition portfolio.
Throughout these modules you’ll receive advice, support and feedback from your academic supervisor. You’ll have the freedom to submit work on areas that interest you - our courses are designed to allow maximum flexibility and independence.
Critical Reflection in Musical Practice (20 credits) runs throughout the year. In this module you’ll develop sophisticated ways to articulate critical and reflective outlooks on your creative work.
You’ll give two presentations and present a paper at a conference organised by MA students in the Summer Term.
Please note, modules may change to reflect the latest academic thinking and expertise of our staff.
During the Summer Term and summer vacation, you will work on Project III (100 credits), an extended individual project.
The extended project is considerably more complex than your first two submissions - you'll submit an essay of 12,000–15,000 words, or a substantial composition portfolio.
You'll receive advice and support from your supervisor during the Summer Term to help you develop your work.
Every course at York is built on a distinctive set of learning outcomes. These will give you a clear understanding of what you will be able to accomplish at the end of the course and help you explain what you can offer employers. Our academics identify the knowledge, skills, and experiences you'll need upon graduation and then design the course to get you there.
Students on a Tier 4 Visa are not currently permitted to study part-time at York.
UK/EU or international fees? The level of fee that you will be asked to pay depends on whether you're classed as a UK/EU or international student.
Discover your funding options to help with tuition fees and living costs.
If you've successfully completed an undergraduate degree at York you could be eligible for a 10% Masters fee discount.
The Department of Music offer a number of postgraduate scholarships, awards and bursaries. See funding options on our website.
You can use our living costs guide to help plan your budget. It covers additional costs that are not included in your tuition fee such as expenses for accommodation and study materials.
You’ll work with world‐leading academics who’ll challenge you to think independently and excel in all that you do. Our approach to teaching will provide you with the knowledge, opportunities, and support you need to grow and succeed in a global workplace.
Your teaching will largely take the form of weekly pathway seminars and regular one-to-one tutorials.
You will have regular meetings with your supervisor, who will advise you and help develop your ideas as you progress through your studies.
We encourage you to get involved with our lively departmental community, from our ensembles to our weekly seminars, performance classes and research seminars.
We have a range of outstanding facilities, including the Sir Jack Lyons Concert Hall and dozens of teaching rooms and practice facilities. All spaces are designed to be flexible and are used for projects, seminars, ensemble rehearsals and recordings. Discover our facilities.
Almost all of your teaching will take place within the department.
Our beautiful green campus offers a student-friendly setting in which to live and study, within easy reach of the action in the city centre. It's easy to get around campus - everything is within walking or pedalling distance, or you can always use the fast and frequent bus service.
You’ll produce Guided Submissions for the first two terms and an Independent Submission during the summer term and summer vacation. These can be written essays or a composition folio.
English Church Music students have gone on to a variety of jobs. Others have undertaken further academic work towards a PhD, and the pathway has also appealed to students who wish to further their study in retirement.
|Undergraduate degree||2:1 or equivalent in Music or another relevant discipline. We will also consider your application if you have a 2:2 honours degree and relevant professional experience.|
If English isn't your first language you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. We accept the following qualifications:
|IELTS||6.0, minimum 5.5 in each component|
|PTE Academic||55, minimum 51 in each component|
|C1 Advanced and C2 Proficiency||169, minimum 162 in each component|
|TOEFL||79, minimum 17 in Listening, 18 in Reading, 20 in Speaking and 17 in Writing|
|Trinity ISE III||Pass in all components|
For more information see our postgraduate English language requirements.
You may be eligible for one of our pre-sessional English language courses. These courses will provide you with the level of English needed to meet the conditions of your offer.
The length of course you need to take depends on your current IELTS scores and how much you need to improve to reach our English language requirements.
After you've accepted your offer to study at York, we'll confirm which pre-sessional course you should apply to via You@York.
You can apply and send all your documentation electronically through our online system. You don’t need to complete your application all at once: you can start it, save it and finish it later.
You will need to demonstrate essay writing ability by submitting a piece of writing with your application.
Get in touch if you have any questions
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