Musicology (M.A.)

The most important facts at a glance:


Master of Arts (M.A.)

Standard period of studies:

4 semesters


Winter and summer semester

Admission restrictions:

Open admission


You find information on the application procedure for international students here.

Applicants with foreign certificates: Language of instruction: German
Required language certificate: DSH-2

Winter semester: April 1 - September 1

Summer semester: October 1 - March 1

Required Bachelor's degree:

Musicology (B.A.)


Musicology Institute


Faculty 07: History and Cultural Studies


The accreditation of study programmes for Bachelor and Master Degrees constitutes as a precondition for the granting of state approval.

Subject Matter

The Musicology course at JGU traditionally teaches an introduction to the subject, which integrates sub-disciplines in a consequent manner and links scientific education with practical components. Within the context of a Master's program, Musicology is supplemented and strengthened by a decidedly cultural historical orientation. The main aim of the program is to significantly enhance key competences of musicological work and theory in a scientific and application-oriented way and to position them more broadly in subject and methodology discourse relating to culture and history.

The main academic parts of the Master's program are the two modules "Understanding Music in a Historical Context" and "Music Historiography".

The module "Understanding Music in a Historical Context" is oriented towards a critically reflective scientific approach to music, as well as the differentiation or contextualization of adequate methodological approaches. The content of the module's courses is devoted to providing an advanced and differentiated analysis of the main categories of music history, taking into account the current research situation, whereby the module is designed specifically for analytical work, as well as for contextualizing issues relating to the history of the humanities, ideas, society, and reception.

In addition to providing an awareness of musical historiographical issues, the "Musical Historiography" module also enables students to critically assess resources and phenomena relating to music history. Using selected topics, the course addresses the application of theoretical historical models and music analysis methods for the specific requirements of music historiography that have been established in the cultural subject discourse.

A "Master's in Musicology Add-on Module" precedes both modules and links the following three items: First, the safeguarding, re-exposure and enhancement of the knowledge gained on the Bachelor's program in Musicology; second, a consideration of musicology methods that goes beyond the Bachelor's degree in dialog with associated disciplines; third, the adoption of a methodological system for the research-based Master's program.

With regard to the student's ability to integrate musicology-related topics and issues with associated cultural historical disciplines, the comprehensive "General Studies" module supplements the first two semesters of the Master's program in Musicology and accompanies students in particular with regard to specializing on the basis of the broad "Elective Module", which is currently divided into a total of eight different specializations, seven of which are transdisciplinary in nature (Theater Studies, Book Studies, Music Theory, Music Informatics, Art History, Media Management and Ethnology) and encompass the most current subjects relating to musicology. At the same time, the module "Musicology as Historical Cultural Studies", which is taught within the JGU, enhances the awareness of cultural problems by encouraging students to address historical music issues themselves. It is combined with cultural history and musicology methodologies in a case-specific way.

Within the module "Musicology in Practice", the reference to practical research in discussion and writing serves to develop key cultural and specific musicology skills. Emphasis is placed on the application of specialist knowledge acquired at the university, as well as networking and the formation of contacts with regard to applying for jobs in future and taking the next steps into a professional musicology career. Here, the resultant need for scientific cooperation intensifies the need to acquire appropriate social skills.

As part of the integrated examination module, students can independently apply musicology concepts and methods according to their subject area after they have finished their Master's thesis, and can independently formulate research questions from all subject areas of the course and prepare these scientifically within the allocated time. In addition, they are able to discuss views relating to musicology and can formulate solutions to problems and defend them in an argument, as well as being able to conduct musicology research projects in an independent manner.

Master entrance requirements

First university degree: Certificate of previous degree

a) a Bachelor degree with a standard period of study of at least six semesters at a university in Germany or abroad with at least 60 credits in the field of musicology. At least 36 credits have to be from the field of historical musicology. If students apply before completing their Bachelor, they must provide proof of having earned at least two thirds of the required subject-specific credit points by the end of the application deadline.

b) an equivalent degree with an equivalent amount of subject-related coursework and examinations.
If in the first university degree program more than 36 but less than 49 credits have been earned in the field of historical musicology, students must attend the additional module 13 in the Master's program which in this case replaces one of the two special modules from the elective field 16. In cases of doubt, the examination board shall decide whether or not the conditions set out in this paragraph have been met.

Students are required to either have a sufficient active and passive understanding of another modern foreign language that enables them to read specialist literature or to be proficient in Latin.

To study musicology, it is highly recommended that students are able to play an instrument. It is also essential that they have a deep understanding of music theory.

Before starting the Master's program, it is strongly recommended that students are first consulted on studying in the field of musicology.

Applicants who neither obtained their university entrance qualification at a German institution nor a degree in a German-language degree program must provide proof that their German language skills are at the level of the DSH (“Deutschen Sprachprüfung für den Hochschulzugang ausländischer Studienbewerber”).


The International Office offers counselling for international students about the application process and general information.

The Academic Advisory Office offers specific information on the subject (List available in German only).

The Student representatives give information from a student perspective (List available in German only).