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PhD Pro­gramme in Artist­ic Research in Music

  • Leads to qualification: Philosophia doctor (PhD) in Artistic Research.
  • ECTS: 180 credits – three years of full-time study.

Admission requirements

To be accepted onto the PhD programme, the applicant must usually have at least a performing arts and/or creative master's degree in the relevant field of study.

Admission is subject to an expert evaluation of the application and project description in accordance with Section 6 of the Regulations concerning the Philosophiae Doctor (PhD) in Artistic Research degree at the Norwegian Academy of Music (hereafter referred to as the “regulations”).

Brief description of the programme

The PhD in Artistic Research at the NMH is a three-year programme worth 180 ECTS credits.

The programme comprises a research training component worth 30 ECTS credits and an artistic PhD project (hereafter referred to as the PhD work) worth 150 credits. The research training component must be completed during the three-year programme.

The primary teaching language is English. The material documenting the reflective component must be submitted in a Scandinavian language or English or in another language approved by the Programme Committee for the PhD in Artistic Research, hereafter referred as the "programme committee".

The programme is regulated by the Regulations concerning the Philosophiae Doctor (PhD) in Artistic Research degree at the Norwegian Academy of Music.

The field of study is music composition and/or performance. This is hereafter described as the "field" or the "field in question".

Learning objectives for the programme

Upon completing the doctorate, the candidate is expected to


  • be able to identify complex problems in artistic research in music performance in the field in question
  • have provided a notable contribution to developing new knowledge, insights and experience of significance to the field in question through their PhD work
  • be able to help develop new knowledge, new methodologies for practice and theory and forms of documentation in the field in question
  • be able to deal with complex professional issues and challenge established knowledge and practice in the field
  • be conscious of the standards for eminence in their field and be able to distinguish between valuable and irrelevant investigation
  • understand both the local and the global context of the issues raised in the project


  • be familiar with project work as a working method in artistic research
  • be able to manage complex artistic processes and projects
  • be able to account for diversity of theory and method in artistic research and identify what the project brings to the field while also discussing and arguing in its favour
  • be able to identify and contextualise current dynamic issues in their field
  • be familiar with and able to evaluate the efficacy of various methods and formats to document reflection on their project
  • be familiar with key issues surrounding research ethics, arts and ethics, and copyright

(General skills)

  • be able to conduct artistic research with a high degree of ethical awareness and professional integrity
  • be able to disseminate artistic research findings in recognised national and international publication channels and participate in professional discourse nationally and internationally
  • be able to expand on our shared artistic understanding and communicate it in an adequate manner
  • be able to transfer their artistic practice and research skills to other fields and recognise any associated career opportunities


The PhD programme is a full-time programme normally lasting three years comprising a research training component worth 30 ECTS credits and an independent artistic PhD project worth 150 ECTS credits. The research training component includes courses on artistic theory, methodology, ethics and copyright, dissemination, project development and documenting results and reflection on artistic research.

The candidate attends courses organised by the programme committee and the Norwegian Artistic Research School.

The programme includes seminars, workshops, lectures, presentations, supervision and independent work.

The course description for each component specifies whether attendance is obligatory.

ECTS credits are used to measure the weighting of each course on the PhD programme. One year of full-time study is equivalent to 60 ECTS credits. One ECTS credit is equivalent to 30 hours of work, including teaching, supervision and independent work.

Participation in international forums and networks and exchanges

The PhD programme will bring the candidate into contact with relevant international arts and research communities through organised events facilitated by the NMH and others. Amongst other things, the NMH is part of the Erasmus exchange programme for students, candidates and teachers. If the PhD candidate so wishes, the NMH may arrange for an exchange or study visit at relevant partner institutions as part of the PhD project.


All courses on the PhD programme are assessed with either a pass or a fail mark.

The diploma will be issued once the candidate has passed the courses which together meet the criteria for the PhD in Artistic Research to be awarded. The title of the PhD work will be stated on the diploma

Quality management

The NMH has a programme in place for ensuring and improving quality in all parts of the programme. The students are important contributors to this process, including by way of student evaluations.

Published: Apr 3, 2020 — Last updated: Feb 1, 2024