Methods in Music Studies

This course will run Spring 2022 

Course content

Contemporary music studies is a highly heterogenous domain of research with elements ranging from the humanities and behavioural sciences to the natural sciences and informatics. The term 'method' is here understood as the skill to fulfil the knowledge aims of a research project, and the motivation for the course is twofold: 1) to become familiar with this heterogeneity of methods in contemporary music studies and thus enable a dialogue between practitioners of different methods, and 2) to enable a well-informed assessment of the PhD fellow's own methodological approach. The course will feature presentations of method challenges in ongoing research by postdoc fellows currently at the Department of Musicology, providing firsthand accounts of methods in ongoing musicological research.

Learning outcomes

By the end of this course, the PhD fellow will:

  • Be familiar with methods in contemporary music studies and be able to understand and assess the possibilities and limitations of different methods in contemporary music studies.
  • Be able to choose and reason about suitability of methods in view of the knowledge aims of the PhD fellow's own research project.


The course consists of 8 sessions of up to three hours each held in the Spring of 2022, to be placed in the weekly ‘PhD slot’, Tuesdays 9:15-12.

  • Presentations by current postdoc fellows at the Department of Musicology of methodological issues in their own ongoing research.
  • Reading of papers suggested by the postdoc fellows, supplemented as needed by other papers.
  • Oral presentations of the PhD fellows' own epistemological reasoning and the main elements of the final essay. 


  • Active participation in the discussions of the postdoc fellows' and other PhD fellows' presentations.
  • A presentation of the main contents of the final essay to be submitted.
  • Submit a final essay of approximately 5000 words which shall give a well-informed and balanced discussion of the method issues of the PhD fellow's own research.
  • By fulfilling the required active participation and submitting the final essay, the course will give the PhD fellow 5 ECTS points as part of the PhD training component.
Publisert 16. juni 2021 14:21 - Sist endret 18. juni 2021 11:11