Doctor Of Philosophy (Music Performance)

Course Duration
Full Time – 3 Years / Part Time – 7 years
Course Location
Kuala Lumpur
Course Mode
Full/Part Time (Local) / Full (International)
Approval Code
Accreditation Code


The Doctor of Philosophy (Music Performance) programme places emphasis on both research and performance at its core either as soloist in solo performance or as the primary performer or soloist in collaborative setting. This programme develops doctoral-level creativity through performance and skills of critical enquiry in research.  The Institute of Music at UCSI is well-known for its Top 50 ranking in the world for performing arts in the QS World University Ranking 2021. Learn from some of the world’s best performers and join the fraternity of over 1,000 music graduates the institute has created to date. 

About the Programme

Mode of instructions

The programme is conducted entirely in English. It is essential that all candidates are able to speak, read, and write fluently in English.

Entry Requirements

Candidates may be admitted into the programme by meeting all the academic, language, music or audition, and proposal requirements below. Additional documentations such as prior experiences in the field and recommendation letters are required.

Academic Requirements

Master’s Degree in the field or related fields, or other equivalent qualification recognised by the Malaysian government.

Music Audition Requirements

Performance Audition (Auditions are conducted at least 1 month before the start of the semester)

Submit a portfolio of work of professional standards and curriculum vitae demonstrating at least 5 years of performance experience.

Pass an entrance audition:

  • A recital programme lasting 25 to 30 minutes.
  • Performance by memory as per concert practice.
  • The level of performance must meet the attainment of a master’s degree graduation level and show potential to develop throughout the PhD programme.
  • For repertoires with piano parts, accompanist is needed. Request for accompanist from the Institute can be made and a fee will be charged. Recording submissions without piano accompaniment will be rejected.

Proposal Requirements

Candidates are required to submit the following:
  • One thesis proposal
    • with information on the scope of research, literature review, and supporting references. The proposal has to be between 500-1,000 words. The focus of the research covers all areas of performances, literatures, and composers. Focus on repertoires performed in Recital 1 and 2 is encouraged.
    • The following components are required:
      • Background of Study
      • Significance of Study
      • Research Aims/Goals
      • Research Methods
      • Research Questions
      • Reference List
  • Two creative work proposals
    • Recital 1 & 2
      - proposed list of repertoires programme to be performed.
    • Lecture-Recital
      - with information on the scope of the literature or performance to be studied and presented. Literature review and supporting reference to be included. The proposal has to be between 250-500 words.

Commencement of the Programme for International Students

Successful applicant will be able to proceed with the programme once the visa requirement is approved and received by the music office.

English Language Requirements

For Local students
Band 5.0
Cambridge English Qualification and Test
Pearson Test of English

* If your native language or the prior degree studies is not in English, proof of English language proficiency is required when submitting your application. If English language is the medium of instruction from previous institution, supporting document is required.
For International Students
Cambridge English Qualifications and Tests
(B1 Preliminary, B2 First, C1 Advanced C2 Proficiency, Linguaskill Online)
Cambridge English Qualifications and Tests
Band 5.0
PTE Academic / Academic (online)
Band 3.5

    Courses Offered

    • Music Research Methods
    Graduation requirements
    • 3 Creative Work Projects

      - Recital 1 (50-60 minutes performance)
      - Recital 2 (50-60 minutes performance)
      - Lecture-Recital (60 minutes performance and 2,000 words document)

    • 1 Research Project
      - 1 thesis (20,000 - 40,000 words)
    Semester 9
    • Submission and Viva

    All information is correct at the time of upload and UCSI University reserves the right to make amendments without prior notice.

    Programme Learning Outcomes

    PLO1: Explain aesthetical issues related to music performance studies and research. 
    PLO2: Demonstrate ability to investigate aesthetical issues and interpretative challenges in music performance through research. 
    PLO3: Deliver professional-level music performances informed by current scholarship and research. 
    PLO4: Communicate clearly through effective delivery methods. 
    PLO5: Show ability to use technology to support use in musical notation interpretation and research-related activities. 
    PLO6: Demonstrate independence and self-advancement in music discipline, research, and professional development. 
    PLO7: Manage concerts and other performance events. 
    PLO8: Act responsibly and ethically as a professional musician, whether as an individual or as a team member. 


    Local Students

    Approximate Total Fees:

    RM 59,340

    International Students

    Approximate Total Fees:

    RM 92,900

    Note: This is an estimated fee, as different countries have different visa processing charges and administrative fees. For more information, kindly refer to your region’s counselor for the detailed fee breakdown.

    All information is correct at the time of upload and UCSI University reserves the right to make amendments without prior notice.


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