Music - 4088



Further your music development with a Monash Arts PhD, examining music across genres from early styles to improvisation and real-time machine music. The Monash Arts PhD is an unrivalled graduate research degree that brings big picture thinkers together with world-leading academics, field experts and sector partners, and the PhD (Music) gives you the practical experience and opportunity to develop your expertise as a researcher and the professional tools needed to undertake music for professional purposes.

At the core of the PhD degree is the Arts Advantage PhD program. This consists of a live performance, an extensive, independent research project supported by at least two expert academic supervisors, and professional development activities or coursework units that provide you with the skills to make an impact in academia, industry, government or the wider community.

What we offer in the Arts Advantage PhD program:

  • An innovative, customisable program that offers tailored industry, sector and professional development opportunities to support and realise your research and career ambitions.
  • Immersive research partnerships with world-renowned experts in our world-class facilities, amplifying your potential to make positive change in your field and in the world.
  • An unparalleled global footprint and a Guaranteed Mobility offer with our domestic and international partners, to connect you to local, national and international opportunities, expand your perspective and help you create the most relevant, influential and scaleable research outcomes.
  • Access to 120 hours of professional development training with a menu of options to sharpen and strengthen your research, leadership communication and collaboration skills.
  • Belonging to a tradition and network of the brightest research minds, leaders and peers in Australia and internationally, providing the reputation and networks that will enhance and propel your work.
  • Your work will be housed alongside our world-renowned research centres such as the Gender, Peace and Security, Monash Centre for Consciousness and Contemplative Studies, Monash Indigenous Studies Centre and Monash Migration and Monash Inclusion Centre.

This customisable, innovative program is specially designed for PhD candidates who want to pioneer the change-making research in Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences that will make our world a better place for all.

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At a glance

Course Details

  • On-campus at Clayton: Full time & part time
  • Off-campus: Full time & part time
  • 4 years (full time)
  • 8 years (part time)
Start date
Throughout the year
Doctor of Philosophy
Course Handbook

Our academics in music are some of the world’s most inspiring and distinguished researchers. To learn more about our cutting-edge researchers’ work across humanities, arts and social sciences, listen to our podcast and watch our documentary series.

Entry Requirements

You need to satisfy the following entrance requirements to be considered for entry to this course.

Minimum Entry Requirements (Domestic students)


All applicants must be able to demonstrate a capacity to carry out independent research and have adequate training and ability to pursue the proposed course of study.

See the Section 2.1 of the Graduate Research Handbooks for detailed information.

English requirements

Sound English language skills are required for academic programs at Monash University.

See the Section 2.2 of the Graduate Research Handbooks for detailed information.

University entrance requirements

Minimum entrance requirements for admission to Monash University Australia.

Your degree will consist of three components, supported by a minimum of two expert academic supervisors:

Research & thesis

You will undertake research that will inform both your creative work and your thesis.

Based on your research and subsequent creative work, a written thesis of between 25,000 to 30,000 words must be completed. It must articulate the conceptual, methodological and aesthetic context for the creative work.

An abstract summarising the connection of the written and practical work of no more than one page will need to be provided to examiners at the live performance, and the written thesis will need to be submitted no longer than 3 months after the performance.

Practical (creative work) component

You will develop a live performance of 90 to 120 minutes in duration or a folio consisting of an equivalent duration in music scores, recordings, programming outcomes, videos or other media as appropriate to the discipline.

Professional development

As well as the research and practical components, you will also complete a series of professional development activities relevant to your chosen research focus. These activities are designed to provide you with the skills needed to develop your professional skills to support you in your future career.

Visit the Faculty of Arts Graduate Research Website.

Making the application

Future students

Applications for this course can be accepted at anytime.

Applications for this course are submitted via the research degree and scholarship online application form.

Current Monash students

You may apply to transfer from another Monash course. Transfers are a competitive process. You may apply mid-year for available courses however consideration will be given as to whether you will be able to follow your course progression.

Please note that if you apply for a course transfer, you should still enrol in your current course as if you were continuing so as not to jeopardise your enrolment in the Faculty if your transfer application is unsuccessful. More about Course Transfer...

Self assess for credit eligibility

Check for study credit using the "Credit search" link on the Credit for prior study page


Research Training Program (RTP)

This course is supported by the Australian government's Research Training Program (RTP). Under the RTP, domestic students are awarded an RTP Fees Offset which exempts them from tuition fees for the normal duration of the course. This exemption is valid for up to four years for students enrolled in a doctoral program and up to two years for a research master's degree.


We offer over 360 types of scholarships, valued at up to $280,000. Some scholarships offer one-off payments while others continue for the length of your course. Learn more about Monash Scholarships.

Other costs and fees

For information on other study costs and fees, see other study costs.