Musicology

About the subject

The ability to make and listen to music is as fundamental for humans as the ability for speech. By means of studies in Musicology you will become acquainted with musical sound worlds and structures, and the ways these are used and interpreted in different social contexts. You will come to know diverse musical genres and traditions, like pop music, jazz, classical music, video game music, and film music.

Musicology addresses you who has a professional need to understand music as a social and cultural phenomenon, as well as you who want to enrich your experience of music by means of such knowledge. Modern musicology involves many different ways of investigating and understanding music. They have in common the view of music as a cultural, rather than a natural entity. If the core of musicology once consisted of historical musicology, ethnomusicology, and music theory, it today also involves modern varieties of cultural theory and interpretation theory.

What musicology is not, is natural science. If you are interested in musical acoustics, psychology of music, or neurobiology of music, these are subjects of other academic disciplines.

Stockholm University offers courses and programmes in musicology at the bachelor, master and doctoral levels.

The courses at the bachelor level represent a wide range of perspectives and options. Their subject matters include: Genres and styles of music, music in society and culture, and music in interplay with technologies and media. Both historical and contemporary perspectives are richly represented.

You will learn music theory and study methods of musical source criticism and field work. Musical criticism and archival studies will be part of your studies.

The courses at the master level are mainly about history of ideas, aesthetics, and philosophy of music. They do not presuppose ability to read scores, which makes it possible for students without musicological background or score-reading capability to attend.

Career opportunities

Musicologists are working in cultural administration and communication, as critics or researchers, and at libraries and archives.

Courses and programmes

Degree

For a bachelor’s degree in Musicology you can choose to study individual courses or join one of the bachelor’s programmes listed under Educations within the subject. The bachelor’s degree in Musicology is only offered in Swedish.

Learn more about Swedish language qualification  

A master’s degree in Musicology can only be obtained through enrolment in one of the master’s programmes listed under Educations within the subject.

More information about degrees at Stockholm University

Research