Norges musikkhøgskole Norwegian Academy of Music
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Mas­ter of Music in Conducting

  • Leads to qualification: Master of Music in Conducting.
  • ECTS: 120 credits – two years of full-time study.

Admission requirements

Admission to the programme requires completion of a Bachelor of Music degree (or equivalent as recognized by the Norwegian Academy of Music) with a minimum of 60 (ECTS equivalent) credits in Conducting concentration(s). Entrance examinations will be administered to applicants with suitable academic qualifications.

There is a limited number of study places available and admission is competitive.

Programme description

The Master of Music in Conducting degree programme comprises a total of 120 credits over two years of full-time study. Students may specialise in orchestral/band or choral conducting.

Students are exposed to and trained in the management of demanding artistic challenges in preparation for a conducting career at an advanced level. During the programme, students will complete an individual Master Project with concentration on a self-selected theme/repertoire. The Master Project is based on an approved project description. Conducting practice with live ensembles is a central component of the study programme.

Over the course of the programme the student will compile a collection of material from which s/he will create a portfolio. Performance recordings, repertoire overview(s), descriptions and reflections regarding her/his area of concentration and musical role, promotional material (e.g. CV, biography, photos, pamphlets, posters, concert programmes), etc. should be included.

Learning objectives

Students graduating from the Master of Music in Conducting programme demonstrate:

  • ability to realize and convey their artistic intentions with a clear personal profile as conductors
  • independence and autonomy when meeting demanding artistic challenges, as well as by initiating, implementing and directing a variety of projects
  • ability to engage in a music sphere and a music industry undergoing change
  • ability to contribute to innovation and new ways of thinking in their role as conductors
  • ability to apply acquired knowledge to expand their musical perspective and carry out independent, artistic development activity
  • ability to analyse and discuss music disciplinary issues in both historical and contemporary contexts
  • ability to articulate and discuss issues in the music field in a thoughtful, reflective manner, both within the music community and in the public sphere
  • ability to analyse and critically assess material from artistic development activity and research, and to use this in their own work
  • understanding and skills for critical assessment of ethical norms and issues of a musical and professional nature

Organisation

The study programme comprises

  • concentration (90 credits)
  • complimentary/elective courses (30 credits)

Students select as their field of specialisation orchestral or choral conducting. With approval (granted on the basis of special application), students with exceptional eligibility are permitted to concentrate (near) equally on orchestral and choral conducting. The study programme consists of teacher-led classroom instruction, academic supervision and independent study.

Very few students are accepted into the Master of Music in Conducting programme, and the number enrolled each academic year will vary. Organisation of the programme is coordinated with participating professional ensembles, and the programme structure/contents will therefore differ among cohorts based on availability.

As a general rule, class attendance at the Academy is not compulsory. However, there are certain courses in which attendance is required. The reason for this is that the activity in the classroom in itself provides students with experiences that lead to insight, understanding and skills in the subject area although this expertise cannot be documented/demonstrated on a test or examination. The individual course descriptions specify whether class attendance is compulsory.

Study credits (ECTS equivalent) are used as the unit of measure to express the scope of the courses in the study programme. The complete master degree programme is 120 credits. One year of full-time study is equal to 60 credits. One credit corresponds to 27-30 hours of work including classroom instruction and independent work.

Master of Music in Conducting candidates must have a programme leader with overall responsibility for monitoring the major area of study and the students’ individualised course plans and progression. In certain cases, this responsibility may be allocated to a team of instructors. The programme leader/instructor team organises two achievement reviews with each student, normally at the beginning of the second (2.) and fourth (4.) semesters of studies. The achievement reviews may address topics such as the students’ goals and plans for the Master’s degree programme, their study progression and their thoughts about professional life following completion of studies. Expected completion dates for course requirements and final assessment for the various concentrations are listed in a programme outline.

Assessment

Courses at the Academy use one of the following two grading systems (with the exception of non-credit courses):

  • Final mark of “passed” or “failed”.
  • Final mark on a scale of A to F, where E is the lowest passing mark.

The individual course descriptions must state which system of marking will be used.

Additional provisions on assessment and examination are laid down in Chapter VI of the Regulations Governing the Programmes of Study at the Norwegian Academy of Music.

A diploma will be issued when the student has passed all the courses required for a degree. All courses which are part of the study programme, as well as the marks and number of credits, will be stated on the diploma. The title of the Graduate Diploma Project will also be stated on the diploma.

Education quality assurance

The Academy has a system for educational quality assurance and development that applies to all aspects of the education provided. Students play a vital role in these efforts by, among other things, participating in student evaluations of courses and programmes.

Read more about educational quality at the Academy.