The Research Process for Musicians

Subject MUSI40064 (2015)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2015.

Credit Points: 12.5
Level: 4 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2015:

Semester 1, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period 02-Mar-2015 to 31-May-2015
Assessment Period End 26-Jun-2015
Last date to Self-Enrol 13-Mar-2015
Census Date 31-Mar-2015
Last date to Withdraw without fail 08-May-2015

Semester 2, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period 27-Jul-2015 to 25-Oct-2015
Assessment Period End 20-Nov-2015
Last date to Self-Enrol 07-Aug-2015
Census Date 31-Aug-2015
Last date to Withdraw without fail 25-Sep-2015

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: One 2-hour seminar per week
Total Time Commitment:

120 hours

Prerequisites: None
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability will impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and the Disability Liaison Unit.


Dr Melanie Plesch



Contact Centre
T: 13 MELB (6352)

Melbourne Conservatorium of Music
VCA and MCM Student Centre

Subject Overview:

This subject provides Honours students in composition and performance with the tools and skills necessary to devise and conduct professional research in music at postgraduate level. Through seminars, group discussions and peer review sessions students will engage with the key principles of research and academic writing and apply them to a context relevant to them.

Students will be supported in defining and focusing their research questions, developing a critical summary of the literature, constructing an adequate conceptual framework, adhering to and meeting deadlines, and presenting their work persuasively, both in oral and written form. The main outcome will be a full research project that could potentially serve as the basis of an application for a graduate program.

Learning Outcomes:

On completion of this subject, students should be able to:

  • Devise and develop a successful research proposal within their field;
  • Frame their creative work or performance into research questions and conceptual frameworks;
  • Engage critically with the relevant scholarly literature;
  • Position their creative work or performance practice within the current state of research;
  • Communicate effectively about their compositional or performing practices within the conventions of academic language;
  • Reflect critically on their own work;
  • Work constructively yet rigorously with peers
  • Three written assignments submitted throughout semester equivalent to 2,000 words (30%);
  • A written project proposal of 3,000 words, due end of semester (40 %);
  • A 10-minute oral presentation on the project, to be given in the second half of semester (20%);
  • Attendance and class participation (10%).
Prescribed Texts:

A reading pack will be available for purchase from the Bookroom before the start of semester.

Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

On completion of this subject, students should have developed:

  • Critical thinking and analytical skills;
  • Ability to seek out, organise and evaluate relevant information;
  • Time management skills;
  • Advanced communication skills, both oral and written;
  • Collaborative skills;
  • Capacity for independent, self-reflective and critical enquiry
Related Course(s): Bachelor of Music (Degree with Honours)
Master of Music (Opera Performance)
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Composition
Graduate Diploma and Certificate Elective subjects

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