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Finding the right MA

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
I'm really struggling to find an MA program that will actually allow me to do the dissertation that I want to. I don't really see the pont in doing an MA that doesn't even point me in the right direction of where I want to do further work. I'm starting to think about looking abroad/OU/MRes, but I'm not sure of my options. I'm looking at a possible september start if I can go part time, if not it will be the year after!

I want to do an MA in musicology, but I want a program that doesn't involve study of classical music (because thats not my background at all), and will allow me to either look at subcultures or visual arts and their relationship with music. But I haven't found anything...

I've used prospects, but I find it a really difficult site to use...

Any suggestions?

Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    The only advice i can think of is to see
    a careers adviser who can help you research programmes
    or hotcourses website. I hope that helps. xxx
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    yeah, but where can I access a careers adviser who actually knows what they're talking about? The college advicer doesn't have any info on post grad courses because they only deal with undergrad inquiries. Especially considering I'm over 21 which seems to knock me out of having any access to youth services because they've all cut their remit down to 18 or 21 rather than 25.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    If it's primarily the dissertation you're looking for (and you're not interested in studying actual modules), I think you really want to be doing a MRes, as that will give you a lot more freedom to do exactly what you want. Start off by looking at the staff pages of university Music department websites which offer MRes courses to see what people's research interests are, and if you find someone working in the kind of area you're looking at, drop them an e-mail to see what they think of your idea, and if they'd like to supervise you. Good luck :)

    ETA: You could also try looking at Google Scholar to find relevant articles/books, which might be a short cut in looking for a potential supervisor, rather than randomly going through staff pages on the off-chance.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    most MRes courses require you to have taken an MA as well. Thats pretty much what I want to do, but if I have to do the MA first I might as well then go on and do a PhD rathe than an MRes...

    I wondering if I should be looking for something along the lines of cultural studies rather than musicology. I might contact one of the people I quoted a lot to see if he is at all interested in my line of research (although I'm not too sure how keen I am on going to uni of northampton, but this guy has many good theories)...

    Any other ideas?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Miss_Riot wrote: »
    most MRes courses require you to have taken an MA as well.

    I thought MRes was Masters level? Certainly, I've found after a quick Google that the one offered at Southampton is, for example, (thus only requires a BA)
    http://www.southampton.ac.uk/postgraduate/pgstudy/programmes/humanities/music/mres_musicology.html
    Miss_Riot wrote: »
    I wondering if I should be looking for something along the lines of cultural studies rather than musicology. I might contact one of the people I quoted a lot to see if he is at all interested in my line of research (although I'm not too sure how keen I am on going to uni of northampton, but this guy has many good theories)

    That sounds like a good idea - go for it! Finding interested contacts is often the easy bit. And yes, broadening out the departments you're looking at may also help - people in your area might not be limited to Music departments.

    Oh, and there's no reason you would have to live in Northampton - being more research-based allows a lot more flexibility to study at distance.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I thought so too, but I've looked at MRes courses at Cardiff and somewhere else and they were only open to people with an MA...

    I wanted to see if I could do something through the OU, but I'm not sure exactly how I'd go about finding that out. Do I just give them a call to see if theres any MA programs that fit what I want?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    You're not getting confused with MPhils are you (which do require Masters, as they're basically the first stage of a PhD)? Looking at Cardiff's website, I can't see mention of MRes, but their website does mention MPhils, along with the PhDs, so maybe that's where the confusion lies. I think that as you want to focus on the dissertation element, you should focus your search on who would be the best supervisor for you: if the OU has someone appropriate than brilliant, if not, you may wish to look elsewhere. Looking at the Northampton website, they don't appear to offer postgrad courses in Music, but if you get in touch with that guy he may be able to suggest places elsewhere worth trying (presumably he'll also know academics working in similar areas).

    You can find info about the OU MA in Music here: http://www3.open.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/qualification/f32.htm but you'll still hit the problem of needing to do taught modules, unless you just wish to do the dissertation module (but then you won't come out of it with a full qualification).
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    This is the guy i want to be my supervisor! He's actually at surrey now, but their MA music program isn't going to work for me (even part time would mean I have to move), so I'm wondering if I just do the MA with the OU and bite the bullet and then go looking to see if I can do my PhD with him as a supervisor... :/

    I might contact him and see what he suggests...
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    The big tricky thing with PhDs that I've been told is not finding someone happy to take you on as a student, but securing funding. Especially in the arts, with the state the economy is in nobody is paying for that kind of research.

    I don't know how this translates over to masters programmes though, I don't know how most people fund those other than saving up etc.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    ShyBoy wrote: »
    The big tricky thing with PhDs that I've been told is not finding someone happy to take you on as a student, but securing funding. Especially in the arts, with the state the economy is in nobody is paying for that kind of research.

    I don't know how this translates over to masters programmes though, I don't know how most people fund those other than saving up etc.

    Yep, but there are a few studentships floating around for PhDs - university/departmental, as well as the research council ones (more so, it seems than postdoc jobs available afterwards - so anyone considering a PhD needs to think very carefully, about why they're doing it, and certainly in Arts and Hums I'd recommend only going for it if you definitely intend on going into academia: it tends to screw your career up otherwise).

    In terms of funding for Masters there are a very few (very competitive) studentships available, but the ones from the research council see it as a PhD preparation course, so there's not much that's stand alone, if a PhD isn't definitely on the horizon. When I did my Masters I got a Career Development Loan, which covered (I think) 80% of my fees and some living expenses (It was £8k). It's meant to be for vocational/career related courses (which I was able to argue Public Policy was). I don't know how easy it would be to apply for one for something like Music, but it's worth looking into.

    Miss_Riot - yes, definitely tap him up for advice! Good luck.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I used this http://www.mastersportal.eu/ to find masters in Europe, in particular places in Scandinavian, the Netherlands and parts of Germany as Masters are often extremely cheap or even free in some case. Plus your traveling at the same time! :) I also managed to find a pretty easily through this.
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