• Code MUSI4402
  • Unit Value 6 to 12 units
  • Offered by School of Music
  • ANU College ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Course subject Music
  • Areas of interest Music
  • Academic career UGRD
  • Course convener
    • Dr Bonnie McConnell
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Offered in Second Semester 2025
    See Future Offerings

This course investigates contemporary theoretical approaches in music research. It focuses on developing conceptual tools for understanding the history, structure, and significance of music over time and across cultures. The course explores key issues in music research that have stimulated debate and reflection over time. It assists students to explore those issues, developing skills in critical analysis and music research design. 

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. understand and evaluate a range of theoretical approaches in music research;
  2. apply theoretical approaches in their own research and writing;
  3. examine music from historical, contemporary, and cross-cultural contexts using discipline relevant vocabulary and tools for speaking and writing critically about music; and
  4. communicate and debate a range of themes, concepts and theories with peers.

Other Information

Recycling of material

Recycling “is the submission for assessment of work which, wholly or in large part, has been previously presented by the same student for another assessment, either at the Australian National University or elsewhere” (Code of Practice for Student Academic Integrity https://policies.anu.edu.au/ppl/document/ANUP_000392, paragraph 2). Students may include material that has been submitted for assessment in this course in THES4105 Thesis. Student may include in the exegesis material submitted for assessment in MUSI4402 Scholar Musician 2 if the following condition is met: a clear indication of the extent of the recycling is to be included in the first footnote.

Indicative Assessment

  1. 6 unit course (null) [LO null]
  2. Abstract (250 words) (15) [LO 1,2,3]
  3. Seminar participation (10) [LO 3,4]
  4. Research Paper (3000 words) (50) [LO 1,2,3]
  5. Research Presentation (15 minutes) (25) [LO 1,2,3,4]
  6. 12 unit course (null) [LO null]
  7. Abstract (250 words) (10) [LO 1,2,3]
  8. Seminar participation (10) [LO 3,4]
  9. Research Paper (3000 words) (25) [LO 1,2,3]
  10. Research presentation (15 minutes) (15) [LO 1,2,3,4]
  11. Detailed thesis chapter plan (1500 words) (15) [LO 1,2,3]
  12. Draft thesis chapter (3000 words) (25) [LO 1,2,3]

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


6 unit version: 130 hours of total student learning time made up from: a) 36 hours of seminars; and, b) 94 hours of independent student research, reading and writing.

12 unit version: 260 hours of total student learning time made up from: a) 36 hours of seminars; and, b) 224 hours of independent student research, reading and writing.

Inherent Requirements

Not applicable

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must have completed MUSI4401, or with permission of the convenor. You are not able to enrol in this course if you have previously completed MUSI8001.

Prescribed Texts



Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 to 12 units

If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
7.00 0.14583
8.00 0.16667
9.00 0.18750
10.00 0.20833
11.00 0.22917
12.00 0.25000
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

Second Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
7007 21 Jul 2025 28 Jul 2025 31 Aug 2025 24 Oct 2025 In Person N/A

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